Ticket screening was supposed to begin at 7:00 pm, so at around 6:15 pm I started walking up Telegraph Avenue towards the event at the Pauley Ballroom on the UC Berkeley campus. On my way there, I was already seeing ubiquitous anti-Milo Yiannopoulos signs calling this gay, Jewish, immigrant (who predominantly dates black men) a “Nazi”, a “fascist”, and many other unoriginal epithets sufficient to excite the decently large “low information” crowd around here.
I continued on through Sather Road coming closer to the Ballroom venue. I briefly walked into the supposed ticketing area, by the Amazon store, to get a better idea what was happening, but rioters were already throwing rocks, paintballs, and burning objects in that direction. Some of the store windows had been smashed in or blown out completely, barricades were torn down, and the attendees were totally exposed to the rioters standing a little further North (behind some weak metal barricades that were going not to last much longer). To me it was not clear where we were supposed to stand or have our tickets screened, it was all very chaotic, and things began to get dangerous for event attendees.
A big fire had erupted near where I stood because rioters had thrown a Molotov cocktail at a container that seemed to be leaking gasoline. At some point I heard a loud explosion, maybe even two. Firecrackers were continually being thrown in the general vicinity and a lamp pole had been torn down to the sound of cheers. The Cops were mostly inside the buildings staring outside, but they were not intervening at all as far as I could see. I’d say there were about 30-40 cops, vs hundreds if not thousands of rioters and supporters.
I tried to connect with a fellow Being Libertarian writer in attendance, but it was difficult to find one another and his phone was dying.
Virtually everyone I saw, across the entire area all the way back to Bancroft & Telegraph, was excited, happy, giggling, taking photos, and basically having quite a blast. Behind the front line of rioters there were drummers, and a DJ, there was a real dance party going on. After they’d officially succeeded in shutting down the event, naturally followed by massive cheers of joy across what seemed like the entire campus, they broke through the barricades completely and moved towards Telegraph & Bancroft.
The rioters, who largely consisted of masked individuals brandishing Antifa flagpoles, lead the march; they were accompanied by continuous drum beats, hip hop music, and people dancing behind them, I could hear a rap song with the profound hook line “Fuck Donald Trump”.
Having attended alone, I’d now successfully connected with another person on the event’s Facebook group and we met up on Bancroft and Sather Lane (note: it’s Lane now, not Road). That’s when the atmosphere turned from dark to terrifying!
Suddenly serious scuffles started in that area, Antifa rioters began to chase down, or sucker punch, Trump supporters and Milo attendees. I heard one Antifa protester, a woman, proudly proclaiming “Hey, we found a bunch of Nazis over there!” I saw a small group help a woman who was wearing a “Make Bitcoin Great Again” hat, who had been sucker punch pepper sprayed during a TV interview by a masked individual.
I saw one guy, surrounded by Antifa rioters, getting bludgeoned really bad as more backup, armed with flagpoles that were gratuitously utilized, came flooding in from behind. I suspect that’s the body I later saw in this footage, where you can see him motionless on the road, surrounded and beaten with a flapole some more for good measure. I wonder if he’s alive.
I saw two Trump supporters, one wearing a MAGA hat, chased down Bancroft Way towards Dana Street by another Antifa mob who were shouting things like “Beat his ass!”, and “Get out Nazi scum!”.
Here you can see the official protest organizer, Berkeley school district teacher Yvette Felarca, (who recently returned to her job after having been placed on leave pending an investigation into “concerns that have been raised”) explain how “doing whatever is necessary” to shut down Milo’s event is their “right to self defense,” thus clearly condoning the violence, arson, and destruction; how else would they have shut down the event? It’s good to know that this unstable, and insecure cliche of a mental patient, is instructing children with your tax dollars, isn’t it?
At this point I, and the friend I’d made here, somehow got pepper sprayed or tear gassed, we’re still unsure where it came from. There was no police presence at all around here. With impaired vision, we fled in a direction that seemed to be the safest way to escape the violence.We managed to connect with a few more friendly event attendees down the street and exchanged experiences and information before we got out of the general area. It was a crazy night!
Here’s an official legal definition of terrorism from Merriam Webster:
terrorism – the unlawful use or threat of violence especially against the state or the public as a politically motivated means of attack or coercion.
In my opinion, this was not a protest, this was not even just a riot, this was well planned and coordinated domestic terrorism! The same kind of terrorism that we can [currently] observe all over the Western world, with matching signage, symbols, names, weapons, flags, strategies, chants, intimidation techniques, violent professional agitators, and so on.
So why not deal with it accordingly? How much longer will this behavior be tolerated?
If you’re interested in more discussion on the topic, here is my call in to Freedomain Radio, together with my friend:
And here is a recorded conversation with another friend regarding the event, including some footage that he mixed in:
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