Are some anarchists missing the point of the "freeze peach" meme?

Submitted by leftous in Anarchism (edited )

I think this meme has caused some anarchists to lose sight of what it is all about. The point is, as anarchists, we don't respect a capitalist state enforced, violence backed "freedom". Moreover it doesn't apply when removing someone's platform, so it's funny to mock the alt-right with freeze peach memes.

However, some anarchists using this meme have used it to justify speech laws. We should not be advocating to give the state more power to abuse us with! Yes, hate speech in general is bad, must be opposed, and platforms removed. But that does not mean we should ever advocate for the fascist capitalist state to impose itself or set legal precedents where we could potentially be attacked by the state for stating our opinions!

This is very important since leftists, Palestinian activists, muslims, feminists, etc. have been attacked and jailed for having differing opinions under the guise of "hate speech". E.g. in the case of BDS. I hope you call leftists out who misuse this meme to argue for giving the state more power.



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ziq wrote

I've never seen anarchists wanting laws, but I'll take your word for it.


leftous OP wrote

Maybe I am encountering too many liberals who think it's edgy to call themselves anarchist.


ziq wrote

I guess you've been hanging around r/leftwithoutedge types.


Defasher wrote (edited )

Prince_Kropotkin: The police are our friends!! Join the US military and help defend our freedom!


ziq wrote

I wish that username would disappear. It's more offensive than the phrase 'anarcho-capitalism' at this point.


nestormakhno wrote (edited )

I'm an anarchist and I'm in favor of things like non-descrimination laws.

Plenty of anarchists are in favor of certain laws as a bandaid. The revolution isn't coming tomorrw, and we need to survive today.


leftous OP wrote

As an anarchist, you understand the government is corrupt, fascist, corporatocratic, capitalist (i.e. designed to protect the interests of the rich and powerful), yet you expect them to enforce protections for the marginalized and the downtrodden? Even when, time and time again, the state uses these laws against these groups? Why would you ever want to give an oppressive and illegitimate state and police force more power and tools to use against you?

This whole site could be described as "incitement" by authorities if they wanted to, just like they have in the case of facebook.


zod wrote

I've seen a lot of this, anarchists that want the government to shut down nazis. The government will never do that. Only the people can shut down fascism.


BlackFlagged wrote

Agreed. Fascism and the state are synonymous. Anarchism is the embodiment of direct action. Expecting the state to do anything for us is a type of stockholm syndrome.


anarchist_critic wrote

I've seen a lot of it too. Here in the UK, someone I know is involved in attempts to get anti-abortion protests banned, using PSPO's. PSPO's are a notorious irregular power used mainly against homeless people, and widely condemned by civil liberties groups. Basically, a local council can ban whatever they like if they think it causes a "nuisance", and it's used to ban things like rough sleeping, begging, street drinking, etc. If a precedent is set that they can be used to ban protests, we'll see it across the board - fracking, anti-war, antifa, you name it. It's a far lower hurdle than the stuff they already use to ban protests. A less generic version of this kind of law was used to destroy the militant animal rights movement about a decade back. But, for this person, winning a victory over sexists is more important than the right to protest. So many "anarchists" these days are idpols. This means they think the "real" hierarchies are informal hierarchies of race, class, gender and so on, and the priority is reversing these hierarchies, using whatever means are "strategic", and if you speak out against them, you're a racist or sexist or whatever. Smashing the state and capital is very much secondary, if they even still believe "the state" exists. They object to the state because it's racist and so on, and they think this makes them anarchist, but they're helping lower barriers against repression. Oh, and by the way, speech laws affect idpols too, because they're forever getting arrested for hate speech in Britain, France etc. The wording of the laws is generally not group-specific, it's "on grounds of" a certain criterion (race, gender identity, religion...), meaning that "reverse" racism/sexism/etc counts ("kill all white men" is hate speech), not to mention inter-group bullshit such as trans v TERFs or Muslims v Jews, or things like militant atheism. They're cutting off their own hands and feet to get recognition from power, and it would be pathetic if it wasn't so serious.


Nosferatu wrote

Absolutely, and it's regrettable that for whatever reason some anarchists have come to this position. We, as anarchists, understand the way the state operates, if they can ban Nazis, they can ban anarchism, if they ban pro-Zionist demos, they can ban pro-Palestinian demos. It is in this vein, that we as people who support those at the bottom of society must ensure, on principle, that the state does not interfere in the freedom speech of those who we despise. This does not mean, by any definition however, that we cannot organize in direct action, no-platforming etc. of those with dangerous views.


ziq wrote (edited )

the state does not interfere in the freedom speech of those who we despise

"Freedom of speech" is honestly a dangerous myth. No state gives its citizens freedom of speech. It's controlled speech. You can resist them controlling certain types of speech that were previously tolerated, but that can't be described as freedom in any way.


Nosferatu wrote

That was essentially the point of my argument, your concern for the phrase "freedom of speech" is semantic and there's nothing that kills an argument more than semantics. My whole argument is, and was, to say that the state's clamping down on view a should be something we protest just as much as the clamping down of view b even if we agree with view b and despise view a


ziq wrote

My bad, didn't mean to nitpick.


Nosferatu wrote

It's no problem I share your resentment for the faux-freedom we talk about but I just don't find it important or enthusing. I'd be on your side if someone began arguing that the Stalin-Goebbels idea of freedom of speech, i.e. freedom of speech for views you agree with, was in any way actually free.


selver wrote (edited )

It does apply when removing someone's platform, it's just that we can make an exception in the case of Nazis as anarchists, but shouldn't allow the State (or probably not even twitter) to do so.