Quantcast
Connect with us

Trump fan who shot anti-Fascist protester set free while journalists face 10 years in prison for doing their jobs

Published

on

A Trump supporter who shot an unarmed anti-fascist protester was released by Seattle, Washington police without charge. Meanwhile, at least six journalists arrested by the Washington, D.C. force face up to 10 years in prison and $25,000 fines on felony “riot” charges for covering protests at the presidential inauguration.

Massive protests were held throughout the country on January 20, the day on which Donald Trump was officially sworn in as president. In Seattle, the date coincided with a public speech by far-right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, an editor of the racist website Breitbart.

ADVERTISEMENT

Anti-Trump demonstrations began early that day in Seattle. In the evening, Yiannopoulos hosted a sold-out event at at the University of Washington. Activists from socialist organizations and other left-wing groups protested outside the hall where he was speaking, chanting “No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA!”

Several minutes into Yiannopoulos’ speech, a Trump supporter shot a protester in the stomach. The victim was later identified as 34-year-old Josh Dukes, a member of the socialist union Industrial Workers of the World. The shooting briefly disrupted Yiannopoulos’ speech. When he heard the news, Yiannopoulos falsely claimed that the victim had been a supporter of his. In reality, local media revealed it was a Yiannopoulos fan who had shot the left-wing activist.

The Seattle Times reported that the shooter had sent Yiannopoulos messages on Facebook before the event, asking for him to autograph a pro-Trump “Make America Great Again” hat. The newspaper also noted that the attacker had expressed support for Trump, Yiannopoulos and the National Rifle Association on his Facebook page.

After shooting the protester, the attacker, whom the Seattle Times did not name, turned himself in to police. He claimed he acted in self-defense and was questioned. Seattle police released him and did not charge him with any crime.

Josh Dukes, the activist who was shot in the stomach, was hospitalized and remains in stable condition. His attorney told local media he was concerned about his name being made public “as the risk of harassment and threats is very real, and my client needs time to rest and recover from his injuries.”

ADVERTISEMENT

While the Trump-supporting shooter is free to walk the streets, more than 230 people mass-arrested by Washington, D.C. police at protests against the inauguration of the far-right president potentially face a decade in prison. Each has been charged felony rioting.

Police kettled large numbers of people at the January 20 demonstrations—not just protesters but also legal observers, medics and media workers. At least six journalists face felony charges as well, including reporters Evan Engel of Vocativ, Alex Rubinstein of RT America, and AlterNet freelancer Aaron Cantu.

The Committee to Protect Journalists slammed authorities for cracking down on reporters, calling the charges “clearly inappropriate” and warning that they “could send a chilling message to journalists covering future protests.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Rubinstein said he had showed his media credentials to police. But he was hit in the face with a flash grenade, which temporarily blinded him and made his ears ring, before being encircled by cops. “I was told that everybody present would be arrested. It doesn’t matter that I’m press,” he recalled.

Police also confiscated the phones, cameras, and other personal belongings of the hundreds of people they arrested. There are some indications that police meddled with the phones after confiscating them.

ADVERTISEMENT

The National Lawyers Guild said Washington, D.C. police “indiscriminately targeted people for arrest en masse based on location alone,” in “illegal acts” that “are clearly designed to chill the speech of protesters engaging in First Amendment activity.” The legal group called the mass arrests illegal and emphasized that police subjected protesters, journalists, and others “to chemical weapons including tear gas and pepper spray.”

In a statement on the shooting of its Seattle-based member, the Industrial Workers of the World pointed out the hypocrisy of law enforcement. “There is a double-standard for violence in America: right-wing activists may shoot protesters with impunity,” it wrote. “We appear to be in a period when the right wing can murder unarmed protesters and claim self-defense.”

The IWW noted that the victim Josh Dukes “had been seen de-escalating conflicts between protesters and counter-protesters before he was shot.”

ADVERTISEMENT

The group also reported that, according to multiple witnesses, the right-wing shooter appeared to have been drunk, and “had aggressively and repeatedly sought confrontations with protesters.”

“We are disturbed by the total silence from Seattle’s political establishment,” the organization said. It also criticized the University of Washington administration for not taking any action.

“Our comrade has expressed his empathy for the shooter and his desire to engage in a restorative justice process rather than cooperating with a criminal prosecution. This indicates his deep opposition to the violence of the police and the state,” the IWW wrote. “The police’s complicity with the shooter indicates their willingness to protect those who create violence.”

The IWW described the so-called alt-right, the far-right political movement led by white nationalists like Milo Yiannopoulos and his website Breitbart, as a whitewashed, contemporary form of Nazism.

ADVERTISEMENT

Yiannopoulos is notorious for his ultra-right views. The internet provocateur, a fervent Trump aficionado, boasts of waging a “culture war” against the left, and says he is “dedicated to the destruction of liberal media.” He vilifies feminism, and was permanently banned from Twitter after inciting racist and misogynist harassment against women on the website. Yiannopoulos also openly demonizes Islam and elevates white Western civilization as the model for humankind.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

FBI investigating possible ‘criminal enterprise’ in Jeffrey Epstein’s jailhouse death

Published

on

The director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons confirmed that the FBI was investigating whether Jeffrey Epstein's death was related to a criminal enterprise.

Two correctional officers, Tova Noel and Michael Thomas, were arrested and charged Tuesday with falsifying prison records to cover up their lapses in their official duties, which included checking on Epstein every half hour, reported the Miami Herald.

The officers instead remained at their desk, browsing the internet and moving around the common area.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Trump mounts sexist attack on Pelosi during impeachment hearing: ‘I think the woman is grossly incompetent’

Published

on

President Donald Trump attacked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) from the White House on Tuesday.

As impeachment testimony was underway in the House, Trump told reporters in a Cabinet meeting that Pelosi is "grossly incompetent."

The president also said that Republicans are "killing it" in the impeachment hearings.

But Trump took a shot at Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, an expert on Ukraine who was testifying at the time.

"I don't know him. ... I never saw the man," he said. "I understand now he wears his uniform when he goes in. No, I don't know Vindman at all. What I do know is that even he said that the transcript was correct."

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

‘You ran out of a book signing!’ Donald Trump Jr torn to shreds for questioning Vindman’s heroism

Published

on

Donald Trump Jr. questioned the military service of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, and was sprayed with venom.

The president's eldest son posted a link to a Federalist article suggesting Vindman is not a dedicated military officer and public servant, a line of questioning which Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) also pursued during an impeachment hearing.

"Let’s Stop Pretending Every Impeachment Witness Is A Selfless Hero," Trump Jr. tweeted, quoting the piece's headline.

Let’s Stop Pretending Every Impeachment Witness Is A Selfless Hero https://t.co/f2Jq7SdxO9

Continue Reading
 
 
Help Raw Story Uncover Injustice. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1 and go ad-free.
close-image