Charlottesville’s “Unite The Right” Rally and the Wrath of the Internet

Charlottesville Unite The Right rally

Through August 11 and 12, a far right rally, Unite the Right, took place in Charlottesville Virginia. The purpose of this rally was to protest the removal of Robert E. Lee’s statue in Emancipation Park and Confederate monuments throughout the country. The rally was attended by hundreds of protestors and counter-protestors and quickly escalated into various incidents of brawling. The rally reached its climax when a rally attendee ran his car into a crowd of counter protesters resulting in the killing of 32-year-old Heather D. Heyer and injuring 19 others.

Background

Picture taken during the car attack on counter-protestors.

Picture taken during the car attack on counter-protestors. Source: ProPublica.

The events in Charlottesville received national condemnation resulting in vigils, rallies for peace, and denunciation from numerous public figures. The events that transpired led various nodes of the internet to take action. These efforts range from taking down far-right web pages to exposing the names of white supremacist publicly.

The Daily Stormer gets the boot from GoDaddy and Google

The Daily Stormer, a white supremacist news site, posted an article slandering and insulting the late victim of the car attack. The article written by The Daily Stormer’s editor Andrew Anglin is… how do I put it… downright sickening. In the article, he states that Heyer is a waste of space due to her weight and lack of children. He further continued to berate her while stating that she is better off dead. Not only was the content of this article disgusting and in horrible taste, but even the way it was written was hard to the eyes. It literally looked like it was put together by someone with the IQ of a slug. And I even feel like I might be insulting slugs by saying that.

“Had she not died yesterday, hundreds of thousands of dollars would have been spent on propping-up this gross creature who had failed to do her most basic duty – her only real duty, in fact – and reproduce.
A Dodge Challenger is a fast car. Fat people like Heather fatty fat are slow, slow, slow.”
-Andrew Anglin

I kid you not this was actually written on The Daily Stormer’s article.

Out of the whole article, the worst thing is him attempting to vilify the victim and exalt the aggressor. I don’t know what psychological issue this Anglin guy is suffering from, but I’m sure it’s really hard to spell. Fortunately, no one will have to suffer reading that article or any content from The Daily Stormer anytime soon. GoDaddy, the company where The Daily Stormer was hosted, has stated that they have violated their terms of use and has given them twenty-four hours to migrate their site. Owners of the Daily Stormer then attempted to migrate their domain to Google only to receive the ban hammer from them too. As of now, The Daily Stormer has migrated its site into the dark web.

Anonymous initiates #OpDomesticTerrorism

Hacktivist group Anonymous has started a campaign named OpDomesticTerrorism. New World Hackers, a counterpart of Anonymous, has taken down the Charlottesville city website using a DDoS attack to send a message. This is in direct protest to the Unite The Right rally and the hit and run incident that occurred.

“Our strategy relies on the unity of these direct actions (DDOS), as the ballot box is no defense against fascism and hatred, nor are the political parties in power now. We are seeing that victories we have won through hard struggle could very well be reversed. Our only chance is to build a movement that relies on the power of the people.”

Internet users identify “Unite The Right” attendees

On the internet, there have been many people trying to identify attendees of “Unite The Right” rally using pictures from the event. Some have even set up crowdfunding campaigns in an attempt verify the identities of the attendees. A Twitter user that goes by the handle “Yes, You Are Racist” has been exposing people who attended the rally.

While the events that transpired on the rally received widespread condemnation, there are a few individuals who feel differently about it. A good number of far-righters and white supremacist seem to be elated by the incidents that took place. Journalist at Unicorn Riot leaked private conversations from a “Unite The Right” Discord chat room. In it, you can see far-right militants inciting what transpired in the rally and sharing media of the injured during the car attack while gloating about it.

Conclusion

As much as I disagree with the Unite The Right rally’s ideology, under the Constitution, they have the right to express their views peacefully. The keyword here being peacefully. While we live in a country that protects our freedom of speech, there are limitations to said freedom. One of them is the usage “fighting words” to incite violence. Fighting words, as defined by the Supreme Court, is speech that attempts to breach the peace or to provoke a violent reaction. Yelling out racist epithets constitute just that. The participants of the “United The Right” rally were not peacefully making their case for the preservation of Confederate history; they were just inciting hatred.

TechAristocrat extends its condolences to the families of Heather D. Heyer, Lt. H. Jay Cullen and Trooper-pilot Berke M.M. Bates of the Virginia state police, and all who were injured during this past tumultuous weekend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *