2018-04-07 13:52:02 UTC
More than 100 Dartmouth College faculty members rushed to
support a controversial fellow professor who repeatedly
justified Antifa's violent tactics -- despite the Dartmouth
president's condemnation of the professor's support for the so-
called anti-fascist group.
Mark Bray, the author of "Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook" and
visiting professor at the Gender Research Institute at
Dartmouth, appeared in dozens of television interviews after the
Antifa movement gained national traction following deadly
clashes in Charlottesville, Va. earlier in August. Bray
supported Antifa's violence, dubbing it "self-defense" and a
"legitimate response" to what he termed white supremacist and
"I think that a lot of people recognize that, when pushed, self-
defense is a legitimate response to white supremacy and neo-Nazi
violence," Bray said on NBC's "Meet the Press" on Aug. 20.
"The lesson of history is you need to take it with the utmost
seriousness before its too late," Bray continued, adding that
demonstrations are necessary to tell neo-Nazis and white
supremacists "You can't make this normal."
A day after the controversial interview, Dartmouth President
Philip Hanlon, troubled by Bray's support of the violent Antifa
protests, condemned the professor's comments, Valley News
"As an institution, we condemn anything but civil discourse in
the exchange of opinions and ideas," Hanlon said on Aug. 21.
"Dartmouth embraces free speech and open inquiry in all matters,
and all on our campus enjoy the freedom to speak, write, listen
and debate in pursuit of better learning and understanding;
however, the endorsement of violence in any form is contrary to
Bray and more than 100 university faculty members took issue
with Hanlon's condemnation and accused him of limiting free
speech, Valley News reported.
"The importance of being able to organize for self defense if
necessary as a last resort has to be on the table when we think
of how to confront neo-Nazis and white supremacists," Bray said
on Vermont Public Radio last week.
On Tuesday, a letter filed by Bray supporters claimed Bray's
comments didn't violate Dartmouth's free speech and academic
freedom policies and Hanlon had read a "distorted" version of
the professor's comments.
"Professor Bray was exposed to violent threats, without so much
as a basic effort even to warn him that the College intended to
endorse the mischaracterization of his position and the implied
attack on his scholarly standing by making clear he had no
institutional support," the letter read.
The letter requests the statement be removed. Bray told The
Associated Press he appreciates the letter.
Members of the Antifa movement allegedly attacked peaceful
protesters over the weekend in Berkeley. The group of more than
100 hooded protesters, with shields emblazoned with the words
"no hate" and flags identifying themselves as anarchists, busted
through police lines, avoiding security checks by officers to
take away possible weapons. More than a dozen people were
arrested in the melee.