Statement Regarding the ANTIFA Terrorist Declaration

Good Evening,

As we reflect upon the anniversary of D-Day (address on that event can be found under Addresses) and the defeat of fascism on the world landscape, I find this to be a prudent time to release a statement regarding the declaration of terroristic intent against ANTIFA. Of course, we have now all overheard a term which has direct correlation with fascism by this point in modern times.

Fascism is defined as a form of far-right, authoritarian ultra nationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, as well as strong regimentation of society and of the economy. This form of dictatorship came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe. An example of a fascist leader would be the staple head of that movement itself: Italian Prime Minister Benito Mussolini. Mussolini is reflected upon historically as the right-hand of Adolf Hitler in leading the Axis powers. By reflecting upon Mussolini alone, I feel that it is evident that fascism is not acceptable in any sense of the imagination. And so, the target placed upon a group such as ANTIFA for the chaos playing out on our streets today is preposterous. The truth of the matter is that ANTIFA is not a collective group, rather a loose collection of local/regional groups and individuals. This essentially makes the declaration of ANTIFA as a terrorist group ineffective.

The violence is posed by groups which embrace violent tactics to suppress opposition. ANTIFA, while potentially integrated in the fold on the outset, is intended to be a scapegoat for the federal government to place blame upon. This declaration, as previously mentioned, will not lead to the deescalation of riots and vandalism. In principle, all Americans are likely to declare fascism as treacherous and a threat to our democracy itself. And yet, to condemn ANTIFA as a terroristic affiliation when no group formally exists? I cannot express my level of displeasure with this proclamation. Not only is the federal branch looking for an obscure place to assess blame, they also are avoiding the issues we are pressed with all together. I am not one to outright condemn any one person or group for their inability to grasp the gravity of a situation, but in this case, I have no other alternative. This issue is prominent, and will not simply die out. Mr. President, it is time to act. You are the President of the United States of America. You must stop tarnishing the reputation of the office itself by your complete inaction in a time of disaster. I am not talking policy at this point, I am talking outright morals, the intrinsic variance between right and wrong as we know in our consciences. What do you plan to do about this crisis, Mr. President? What reform do you propose we place forward to address the issue of police brutality? What speech will you deliver to put protestors at ease? What symbolic gesture are you willing to preform in order to illustrate that you hear the cries of millions of American citizens? Mr. President, you have had three weeks to show one once of sympathy, to show that you care about the Floyd family, to depict your awareness of the injustices faced by African American communities, to make an appearance at a public gathering which mourns the loss of Mr. Floyd while reflecting upon the issues faced by thousands of communities scattered throughout our great country. Mr. President, in case you have not taken notice of this obvious fact, you have failed to preform any one of those actions.

Let me reflect upon a time in 2015, when incumbent President Obama marched with a large crowd to reflect upon the granting of voting rights to African Americans. Let me reflect upon a time in 2020, when several state governors marched with protestors in an effort to bring awareness to the need of common sense police reform. Let me reflect upon a time in 2020 when the Democratic nominee for President Joe Biden walked the streets of Delaware to access the damage caused riots, and went on to listen to members of the African American community in a nearby church. Policy aside, all of these officials heard the collective cry for help, and stood in solidarity with them. These public servants wished to show solidarity with the protestors. Now let me reflect upon a time in 2020 when the President issued a statement on Twitter, calling protestors “thugs” and uttered the racially-insensitve statement, with history dating back to the Civil War, “when the looting starts, the shooting starts”. The point in this reflection is not necessarily intended to compare which servants present themselves with decorum or ‘act like a President’. The point in this comparison is to illustrate what a public servant is expected to do when holding office: listen to their constituents, regardless of their affiliation or support level. The term public servant indicates that you must be beholden to the interest of the majority of your constituents, not just your political base and donors. I certainly hope that we have not lost sight of that basic, democratic initiative.

I leave you with one final point: when you enter the ballot box on election day, and on any election day to clarify, you will ponder one question to yourself. President Ronald Reagan had conjured up this proposition in his election bid in 1980, and I find this to be a very basic, yet vital consideration that each voter must consider prior to bubbling in your choice as to who best represents the interest of America’s future. President Reagan stated, “Are you better off than you were four years ago? Is there more or less unemployment…than there was four years ago?” I pose those questions to you in this election before you make your choice. Carefully consider every variable which accompanies every candidate. Also give consideration to third party candidates and independents if the ‘lesser of two evils’ argument is unappealing to you. The one thing I encourage every eligible voter to avoid, however, is not voting at all. The easiest way to voice your opinion in this democracy is through your vote, and so at that, why wouldn’t you want your opinion to hold weight. Regardless of whether people appreciate your views, they are meaningful because they show that you care, that you can compose your own, unique opinions on complex matters. Perhaps the greatest accomplishment of voicing your opinion is the very fact that you can form one in a time when the electorate is so easily swayed and buys into every narrative at a whim. Irrespective of whether I personally agree with someone, I respect their view as they know what they stand for and express it openly. I will always respect that, and I hope you all can as well. In a society where name smearing has gone rampant, I find that the value in meaningful conversion and compromise has skyrocketed.

– C. Lewis

Statement Regarding the Passing of David Dorn

Good Evening,

We have lost many innocent civilians in the past few weeks due, in part, to the violent protests ravaging through our great nation. It is unfortunate that we will never be able to properly commemorate these fine Americans, but we can do our best to promote at least a few stories of the accomplishments of who they were as a person. No, I do not mean any sort of accolades or certificates which show that they successfully graduated from college, or from a training course prior to entering the workforce. I am referring to the true accomplishments one achieves in life, such as being a gleeful son, or a sidekick of a brother, or a proud father. I am talking about the events in life which matter most to you when you know that your life is coming to an end. Or, in the case of these civilians, the moments which flashed before their eyes as their last chapter on Earth concluded without warning. Their lives were taken in cold blood, and we cannot forget who they are, what they stood for, or the loved ones that they leave behind. They had not known that they would never wake to see another day. They did not get the chance, that invaluable ability to call or see their family once more prior to their passing. While this statement is directly addressing the passing of Captain Dorn, we must also take a moment to commemorate our fellow civilians who also have perished as a result of the extensive violence playing out in the streets across America the past few weeks. If you have the ability to do so, I encourage you to seek out donation services to help the families recover from these tragedies and cover the unforeseen expense of a funeral, one which they must conduct far sooner than ever anticipated.

Captain David Dorn, a retired police captain of St. Louis, was brutally shot outside a pawn shop. He was the type of person who actually stood up for the morals that this movement, the Black Lives Matter movement, preached. He wholeheartedly agreed with the basic concept of equality and the ambition this generation has to achieve that premise. He would give his life to stand up for these activists, and he ultimately lost his to looters who diminish the very morals this movement is founded upon. Dorn was working security for this pawn shop, which was owned by his friend. He went to check the alarm when it rang early Tuesday morning, only to find looters at the doorstep. He did his part to attempt to allow the group to walk away peacefully, but they took advantage of the situation, murdered Dorn in cold-blood, and proceeded to rob the shop. Similar instances have played out throughout the nation, to business owners, employees, residents of large apartment buildings, and so on. Not only have these violent rioters destroyed countless properties, effectively depleting the life savings of your average mom-and-pop shop, but they have now resorted to the ruthless killings of innocent bystanders. When have we ever stood for a group of vandals who set an apartment building ablaze while occupied by a little girl and her mother? How do we defend that and their following action of preventing firefighters from entering the building to save the family? We have never stood for such immoral actions, and we haven’t for one simple reason: they defy every principle we have abided by since the dawn of modern humanity. I urge everyone to join with me in condemning the actions of these rioters. They must be held accountable for their crimes just as the officers who murdered Mr. Floyd must be held accountable for theirs. To denounce their actions and go on to praise the violence playing out on the streets is hypocritical and fails to advance the movement that we are all advocating for. Our society is currently unraveling at its seams, and if we allow this to continue, we will not have a democratic society to reform at all. We must commence the layout of reform, as presented in my prior statement, but this violence gets us nowhere close to the exceptional results we seek. These are human beings, and no life is worth losing.

Captain Dorn was an esteemed colleague of his police department. The department mourns his loss, as do we as a nation. We have lost so many priceless lives as a result of reckless actions. Mr. Dorn leaves behind a wife who also serves in the same department which he had retired from. The shock of this event will not subside in our nation for months, but it will likely never leave his loved ones and close friends. We had only known Mr. Dorn for the short five minutes he was recorded on camera, and yet those close to him have a lifetime of memories which they have shared together. Know that we stand with you, in solidarity, in unity, in remembrance of a fine man who lived his life on the basic idea of dedicating service to aid others. We will forever appreciate your commitment to service, even if it cannot be openly expressed at this tumultuous time. Police officers do not get the credit, the recognition, and the respect they deserve for the sheer devotion they give to their communities. Captain Dorn served 38 years for his department, and many other officers dedicate at least 20 years as well. That service will not go unnoticed or underappreciated, rest assured.

Lastly, I would like to comment on the heightened tensions between the public and blue-collared workers. I have already released my plan on how to reform policing to be more accepting, and more equatable to all communities in the 21st century. However, I would like to point out something that, I feel, has gone unsaid for long enough. I believe that the vast majority of police officers are good people at heart, and are guided by the proper moral principles that we would expect them to be. Take Captain Dorn for example, he is a fine gentleman who served for 38 years without notable complaint, and forged a long record of being well-liked by the community and colleagues alike. I understand and wholeheartedly agree that we need drastic reform in the way which we practice our policing tactics, but we cannot completely blame those who don the uniform as comparatively intolerable. The officers must adhere to the policy they are guided by, and there are certainly many policies which are not acceptable and should be eradicated. But by and large, most officers are good people. And I am confident that, once these steps are implemented to reform policing, those who are the negligent members of the pack will become obvious to all and will be dismissed immediately. We, the people, can coexist with blue-collar workers. We, the people, must coexist with blue-collar workers if we are to continue on as a society. We do not need to establish a police state, but we cannot fall into a state of anarchy and nihilism either. It is in our own self-interest that the police continue to hold a place in society, and it is also in our own self-interest that we enact the reform necessary to ensure that minorities are never treated unjustly by officers of the law again, and that impose limits to the control the police hold. Let us learn from prior mistakes while crafting our newfound future. And in that essence, we forge forward and call for action and accountability. But let us not overlook our own credence, either. We must hold ourselves accountable for our own missteps, as it would be vastly insincere to hold oneself to a different standard than others. If we are ever to achieve blanket equality, we must be mindful of our own partialities, and act diligently to overcome them.

Cordially,

– C. Lewis