On August 6th, Joey Gibson stood with nazis while claiming not to stand with nazis.
On August 6th, Joey Gibson held another far-right rally in downtown Portland, In an effort to record the facts about this fascist-enabling activity and provide educational tools for those new to anti-fascist activism, we held a Fight the Fascist Creep Fundraiser Challenge. After outlining eight different types of fascist-enabling activity that had been seen at Gibson's previous events, we asked those opposed to this sort of fascist creep to pledge donations to the National Network of Abortion Funds for every instance of this activity we counted.
In the end, we counted 47 instances of fascist creep, which amounted to $678 donated to the NNAF. While it would take far too long to list every single instance, here is a summary of what we saw.
Entryism - Final Count: 11
Joey Gibson delivers a speech next to his two “white nationalist” white supremacist friends Allen Pucket and Jacob Ott.
Entryism is a tactic by which extremists gain entry to a political organization, in the attempts to recruit members of that group to their own extremist aims. In addition to Identity Europa coordinator Jacob Ott, and white nationalist leader of the Street Preachers Allen Pucket, eleven total members of white supremacist and fascist organizations were spotted, masquerading as far-right patriots.
Tokenism - Final Count: 5
Joey invites a trans woman to speak, even as attendees of his rally harassed and threatened other trans people present.
Tokenism is a process of holding up a few token minority members of an organization, as “proof” that the organization cannot possibly be racist or white supremacist.
In the above image, one of Gibson's supporters calls “racism” when Tiny Toese is given the finger, even though immediately afterwards, Toese assaulted anti-racist protesters.
Joey plays the race card, calling a critic “racist” even though Joey is the one who invited white nationalists and white supremacists to march with him on August 6th.
Blind-Eye Constitutionalism - Final Count: 6
Gibson’s followers erroneously cite the First Amendment, which limits the government’s ability to curtail citizen’s speech, as a rationale for ignoring racism and bigotry right beside them. They are so desperate for followers that they will defend neo-nazis, and call this threat to our communities “freedom.”
Joey posts a photo of Tiny threatening someone with his shoe right before he hit someone with it, with an empty plea for “tolerance."
Dog-Whistles - Final Count: 8
A “dog-whistle” is a form of racism that masquerades as ordinary speech. Ordinary people may not know that it is racist, but racists certainly know that it is racist, and use it to speak to each other almost as if in code.
In this conversation just before the rally, Gibson plays dumb while fascists portray their white supremacy as “anti-diversity”.
Baiting - Final Count: 8
Deborah Venetucci believes protesters worship satan.
The history of baiting is long and varied across different contexts, but it uses fake scare-tactics to disguise violent persecution behind popular outrage. Playing on fears of communism, terrorism, satanism, or pedophilia at different times, this practice uses a moral enemy to target political opponents for a rampaging mob. At the August 6th rally, anti-fascist protesters were accused of being communists, satanists, terrorists, and pedophiles– a grand slam of baiting tactics which Gibson's followers revell in.
Fascist Irony - Final Count: 3
Vincenzo Molino waves a fascist “helicopter rides” flag as Lee Gayer Robbins looks on admiringly.
In contemporary internet culture, it is a common defense to claim that hate speech is mere trolling, an attempt to “trigger” sensitive people, a joke, or just ironic. But this attempt to create loopholes for the intention of racist content or imagery ignores a simple fact: no matter how ironic you might think you are, there are real nazis doing the same thing, and as you stand next to each other, no one can tell you apart.
A participant in Joey Gibson's 8/6 rally displays a “kekistan” color-swapped nazi war flag.
Another attendee wears a “kekistan” color-swapped nazi war flag as a cape.
Fascist Symbolism - Final Count: 4
A rally attendee wears a sticker combining the US flag with the “rising sun” motif, a symbol of imperial Japan.
Fascists throughout history have appropriated symbols from other sources, rather than invent their own. Famously, the swastika was an ancient sun symbol before it was used as the symbol of Hitler’s Germany. Although now the swastika is more readily recognized as a symbol of nazism and fascism, there are other symbols that are more obscure. Fascists often use this obscurity, as a way of signaling amongst themselves, and also denying that their use of this symbol is intentionally fascist.
State Collaboration - Final Count: 2
One of many attempts by rally attendees to sic the police state on anti-fascist protesters.
Whether by providing free rides on Trimet buses for fascists, or by bombarding activists with chemical weapons so that fascists can walk to their parked cars without delay, or by collaborating with militia members to unlawfully detain protesters, the state often works hand in hand with the far-right, and against anti-fascists. On August 6th, after several fascist and patriot rally attendees blatantly attacked anti-fascist protesters (including Francis Marion, who cornered a person on the ground and began punching and kicking her) they then attempted to call the police, to get anti-fascists arrested for defending themselves.
This is only a small amount of the fascist creep activities that has been seen at Joey Gibson's events. And yet, we wanted to provide this report to the Portland community in order to promote the facts about the far-right, and at the same time promote a great cause like the National Network of Abortion Funds.
But when it comes to opposing fascism and white supremacy in our communities, there is no way that a fundraiser could ever be sufficient. Rose City Antifa has and always will stand for community self-defense. If you see fascists, their activities, or insignia, or if you have other information about any fascist, neo-nazi, white supremacist, or other bigoted organizing be sure to send it to [email protected]!