The labels “alt-right” and “alt-left” get a large chunk of media play these days. The most notorious recent event highlighting the two groups was the protests in Charlottesville, Virginia. The violence pitted groups such as Antifa against the smaller contingent of KKK and White Supremacists and caused national outrage.
Of the two groups, the “alt-left” Antifa has stolen the media show during recent times. The “alt-right” KKK is only famous recently because of the violence in Virginia. However, their sinister reputation is well-known and extensively documented.
Yet, the radical offshoots of the alt-left and alt-right are more alike than even they realize. In reality, they are but different versions of the same dangerous poison. A poison which is spreading through the bloodstream of our nation.
The Violent Tactics of the Radical Alt-left and Alt-right
There are the obvious similarities between these radical groups. For one thing, both the KKK and Antifa, are violent in rhetoric as well as action, which indicates radicalism. That is obvious from both what is said and written, and the kinds of acts they engage in.
To be sure, there are many other named organizations which can be called radical on both the left and right. However, the radical alt-left is most famously manifested as Antifa, and the KKK are the best-known representatives of the radical alt-right.
Antifa has been most active on the campus protest scene. The most prominent of these in recent times was the violent protests in Berkeley on the campus of the University of California back in February of 2017. The KKK is, of course, infamous particularly for burning crosses and lynching black people.
However, there are also similarities which go beyond violent methods. Similarities that might be more difficult to spot, but they are there. Things in common that the essence of both the radical ‘alt-left,’ and ‘alt-right,’ share.
The Effort to Own Freedom of Speech
Another facet that both groups share is their efforts to own the platform of “free” speech in America. Neither the KKK or Antifa desire to destroy the ability to speak as they wish. However, each does wish to limit free speech to themselves! Whatever “freedom” to speak exists, each group wants to own that right exclusively.
It is perhaps best expressed with the classic saying, “freedom for me but not for thee.” Both the radical ‘alt-left’ and ‘alt-right,’ have the same reason for embracing this stance. They are afraid of two things. One is the opposition. The other is the unvarnished truth.
Of the two, it is the truth they are afraid of the most. Radical ideologues are always afraid of losing their ideology to the truth. To a racist, the truth that another person of another race could be equal to themselves threatens to destroy their radical ideology. The reality of actual free speech can bring truth that threatens radical ideologues in the form of ‘alt-left’ or ‘alt-right.’
The Politics of Socialism is Shared
Once again, using the KKK and Antifa as representative of the so-called ‘alt-right’ and ‘alt-left,’ we see a shared politics of socialism. The difference between both groups is their emphasis that a certain expression of socialism is correct, while anyone else is wrong.
The KKK clings to the notion that socialism was correctly expressed by the Nazi party in Germany. Many people know the Nazis today as Neo (or ‘new’) Nazis. Far fewer know that the word “Nazi” is a nickname for the “National Socialist German Workers” party. “Nazi” is a shortened form of the name as pronounced in German.
National socialism, like all socialism, focuses on a re-distribution of wealth from one group in society to another. National socialism, or “Nazism”, promoted the concept that the wealth should be re-distributed from non-Aryan people to those of “pure” Aryan stock. The state controls the means of production and state officials determine how the wealth is distributed. Thus, the core of national socialism is a statist philosophy.
Antifa holds a different socialism as its belief. It is a more classic Marxist type of socialism with the Communist idea of wealth redistribution being:
From each according to his ability, to each according to his need
The state controls the means of production, as in Nazism, and state officials determine how the wealth produced is to be distributed. Thus, the core of Communist socialism is also a statist philosophy.
Socialism is Poisonous in Any Form
The current horrific situation in Venezuela is a real-world demonstration that socialism is poisonous in any form. The people of the nation which was once the most prosperous in South America now suffer hunger akin to the poorest of third-world nations. Hunger to the extent that zoo animals are being eaten by people who break in and kill them for food.
The tragic story of Venezuela has escalated in 2017 from riots to the burning of their Supreme Court building through hyper-inflation to economic collapse. The people are reaping the consequences of decades of Socialist dictatorship under the late Hugo Chavez and his recent successor Nicolas Maduro.
There are multiple reasons socialism in any form is poisonous. Many people have written about the poisonous economic effects of socialism. Perhaps this was best expressed by the late British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
The problem with socialism is that eventually, you run out of other people’s money
The Poison of Socialism is Idolatry
Every type of truly socialist government is run by the state itself. In Nazi Germany, the head of the state was Hitler. In modern Russia, the head of the state is Vladimir Putin. In Cuba, the Castros are in charge. In North Korea, well, we all know about Kim Jong Un.
These regimes have two things in common. One is socialism itself. The other is a restriction or removal of free religion. In order for the state to control production and re-distribution of wealth, it must ensure that the ultimate loyalty of the individual is to the state.
Free religion is a threat to that loyalty. Free faith in God through Judaism and Christianity in particular, insists that ultimate loyalty belongs to God alone. In both Russia and China today, the churches that exist legally are state approved and controlled.
In North Korea, the state does not tolerate religion other than worship of Kim. Christians are subject to horrible persecution there. It gained the shameful status as the worst persecutor of Christians in the world just this past year.
When socialism of any sort is taking hold, hostility to a belief in God increases. This is the underlying evil Antifa and KKK types of socialism embrace, the evil of idolatry. The deadly poison of socialism is the creeping idolatry of making the state “God.” And, as God commands:
You shall have no other gods before Me. Exodus 20:3
Socialism is not unbiblical. It is anti-biblical for it fosters the sin of idolatry. It may appear strong at times in history, but it will always fall in the end. For the poison it inflicts is toxic to the socialist cause itself as well as the society it infects.
New American Standard Bible, The Lockman Foundation, 1997
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