The Unite the Right event in Charlottesville made its mark on the psyche of the nation in August 2017. For most, it is cemented in their minds as part of national history, the nature of which has already been decisively settled. Those who depended on the MSM narrative have heard the event frequently mischaracterized as a "white nationalist rally," and often used to condemn Trump for supposedly calling Nazis "very fine people." (For a more accurate assessment of Unite the Right, please see our series of articles about the event).
Having satisfactorily convinced most Americans of the elite-approved narrative, the Fake News peddlers have moved on to other subjects. Consequently, most people don't know about the Charlottesville saga that continues to play out in the courts. That is unfortunate, because the case not only challenges the official narrative of the contentious event, but also raises important First Amendment issues.
On February 21, a decision was issued by the Fourth Circuit in the Kessler vs Charlottesville lawsuit, which event organizer Jason Kessler filed against the city for violating his First Amendment rights by orchestrating conflict in order to justify shutting down Constitutionally protected speech.
The "heckler's veto" issue that is central to the case has rarely been raised in U.S. courts. There is a precedent set in the Sixth Circuit from a 2015 case in which a group called the Bible Believers, a group of anti-Islam Evangelicals left unprotected by police, were removed from a Muslim festival in Dearborn when the crowd became violent towards them. In this case, the court decided in favor of the Bible Believers, reasoning that the police could have taken other action that would have allowed the Bible Believers to exercise their rights to free speech.
Unfortunately, with regards to Kessler vs Charlottesville, the judge granted the city's motion to dismiss the case. The ruling, which focused heavily on the obligations of police to protect, stated that "plaintiffs did not suffer any violation of an existing constitutional right."
Really? As Kessler remarked after the ruling was issued, the rally speakers "never got to say one word in support of the [Robert E. Lee] statue."
They will appeal the ruling. It is entirely possible this case could be argued before the Supreme Court. As tensions in this country increase, the right to free speech in potentially volatile situations will become an even more a critical issue.
Kessler's persistence in this David-and-Goliath case is laudable. He and his legal team have faced delay tactics, stonewalling of FOIA requests, and adversarial press. They have been harassed with excessive discovery request by some of the Usual Suspects who have also been a thorn in the side of the Trump administration. (He is also a defendant in a civil case stemming from Unite the Right which is expected to begin in the fall of this year.)
Despite the disappointing ruling, Kessler remains determined and optimistic. Noting that free speech is the most important issue in dissident politics, he declares that he intends to fight until all legal options are exhausted. Either we will win, or we will learn for certain that the courts will no longer uphold the right to free speech. If so, we must be prepared to make a populist appeal based on the facts of the case - that, he believes, we can win.
I'm not a scientist. In fact, I struggled with the basic requirements of science needed for high school and college graduation. It's not my "thing." Even if you did better than me in your science classes, you are probably not a "climate scientist." Still, I think there are plenty of common-sense reasons to disbelieve the doomsday cult of environmentalism.
Some of us are old enough to recall when "global cooling" was a concern. Then the fear was "global warming." You don't have to reach too far back to remember when Al Gore received worldwide praise for announcing the Inconvenient Truth that the polar ice caps would all be melted by the year 2013. (In case you haven't noticed, they're not all melted). The list of failed predictions goes back decades.
Mistakes and re-calibrations do not disprove the notion of global climate change. The issue isn't that mistakes are made - it's that when the predictions don't come true, there is never an explanation given for the errors, or even an acknowledgement. There is no explanation why we should believe in the greater reliability of the new assertions. Given the laughably bad track record of past predictions, it's reasonable for us to be highly skeptical of new predictions. Still, full faith in the doomsday proclamations is expected - no, demanded - by people who are completely unaccountable for their own previously stated beliefs.
Hypocrisy - oh, the hypocrisy!
Global elites flock to Davos annually in private jets to discuss reducing carbon emissions. Al Gore lives in an expansive estate. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez rides in an SUV from her apartment to her office at the nation's capital. The Obamas just bought beachfront property which we are to believe will be underwater in a few short years. Celebrity environmentalism advocate Leonardo DiCaprio has used private movie studio jets to squire models from coast to coast and vacationed on one of the largest yachts in the world. Rather than being scorned by environmentalists as a hypocrite and a poser, he is showered with awards, which he happily jets all over the world to collect. He is not adored because of his conscientious stewardship of resources, but because, like Tom Cruise with Scientology, he is a celebrity member of a cult.
Why don't the Davos attendees set a good example for the rubes by foregoing their luxury travels and accommodations in favor of a video conference? Why doesn't political "it" girl AOC make going car-less cool by lacing up a pair of designer sneakers and hoofing it to the capital every day? When is Al Gore going to downsize and embrace a minimalist lifestyle? People who were sincerely concerned about the effects their actions have on the environment would not shamelessly flout their own advice, yet the loudest advocates almost invariably do.
Invariably, solutions to man-made "climate change" are beneficial, or at least not disruptive, to those who propose them. Vegetarians want you to give up meat. City dwellers want you to give up your car. Web designers want coal miners to find a new line of work. "The future of humanity is at stake - people I don't like must sacrifice things I don't care about!"
I have recently heard celebrities encourage fans to eat less meat and dairy and use less plastic. Aluminum drinking straws and reusable shopping bags are popular. But consider the many things which impact the environment that are NOT being discussed. To prevent the end of all human life, shouldn't people be willing to give up hormonal birth control and quality-of-life drugs which are flushed into the water supply? How about imported foods like bananas, avocados and coffee? Eating only locally-grown, in-season produce would cut down pollution from fuel and refrigeration. How much energy would be saved if everyone in the USA completely gave up recreational travel, or if non-essential businesses all closed after sundown? And we don't really NEED to upgrade our electronics, use climate control, or buy new clothing regularly. Making such drastic lifestyle changes would be a sacrifice, but it's better than facing certain doom in *checks watch* 11 and a half years.
And - this is almost too horrible to contemplate, but the future of humanity is at stake - we could urge our fellow Americans to STOP BUYING CRAP THEY DON'T NEED. We are called to sacrifice for the future generations who cry out, "For the love of all that is holy, please don't buy another throw pillow!" Think of all the fuel and plastic waste that would be saved if every soccer mom in America stopped binge-shopping at Target! It would be a big sacrifice, but worth considering before we resort to CANNIBALISM as one Swedish professor recently suggested.
Now that I think of it, I have also never heard a politician or celebrity mention the waste of resources and environmental impact caused by our numerous and never-ending wars.
Ubiquitous "Greta the Climate Kid" has traveled the globe recently, haranguing world leaders about their inadeuqate response to the supposed climate emergency. The Swedish teen, who has the autism-spectrum disorder Asperger's syndrome, is daughter of an actor and a singer. Last month, with tears in her eyes, she angrily shrieked at the UN:
If not for erased history, Greta might have known that a very similar speech was given to the UN by another teen in 1992.
Appeal to emotion is a tactic of those with a weak argument. Why not have an intellectual heavyweight smacking down skeptics with facts and logic? That should be easy to do, since the "science is settled," right? If the science is irrefutable, why are professional scientists who question climate change orthodoxy fought not with superior data and arguments, but with harassment and threats? Why are there serious calls to jail "climate deniers?" People who have irrefutable facts on their side do not fear discussion and debate, and in fact often welcome it. Panicked attempts to silence dissenters are evidence that one's beliefs cannot withstand scrutiny.
Try to imagine how serious, earnest people who were deeply concerned about a dangerous trend would behave. The big and small decisions in their lives would attest to their sincerity. They would firmly, consistently use logic and facts to prove the truth of their viewpoint. They would be open to any and all manner of potential solutions for fixing the problem, even those which required personal sacrifice. They would certainly not stand behind a crying child in pigtails.
"All the world's a stage."
Synicon: "People used to love God, because God knew all things. He even knew you - everything about you. You could speak to him whenever you wished and were perfectly understood by him even when you didn't understand yourself. A necessary role for the well-being of man. Now, however, that function has been supplanted by our own methods. Knowledge of yourself - the most intimate personal details, relationships, biological urgings and genetic makeup - can be transmitted seamlessly to millions across the planet. The universal quest for God was nothing more than a quest to make oneself known and loved by all. But we need not a god to make known one's individuality. We now have methods for finding it even when you yourself don’t know."
Other: "This is all superficial understanding. A man can't be known by others in ---"
Synicon: "But they think they can, and who can tell them they are wrong? Who has the authority to deny them their reality? The mind - and the notions therein - is all that matters. We shape the world - all matter is malleable."
CC: The nods to 1980s pop songs were a neat touch, that I, as a Gen-Xer, particularly appreciate. What gave you the idea for that?
ED: Glad they pleased! I’m a millennial myself, though I do enjoy earlier music. The whole first issue - especially the villain - was a little observance on culture. We have some outlandish punk-pop baddie attempting to take revenge on his former girl, who herself can’t find her place. The whole city is sort of a throw-away culture, cheap and artificial (like superhero comics generally, really). The Rebel enters in opposition to the noise with his own voice.
As for the name “Rebel Yell,” both it and the first villain, Gunther Glitz, were inspired by a particular artist, so it only seemed fitting to fill the pages with song references from that era.
CC: What do you hope readers get from Rebel Yell?
ED: I foremostly want them to enjoy it. Then I hope they can see our symbols as something good. Let them know they have a voice and are themselves something unique.
CC: I see that the second issue is in development. Can you give us any hints about what to expect in this next installment?
ED: The second issue was actually supposed to be launched after four or five other issues, but I decided to step up the date because of the continued destruction of our monuments. The issue centres on such vandalism. It’s not as heavy on story as the other issues, but rather spotlights a big brawl between our hero and some modern urban redecorators. Expect some high energy.
CC: What are your long-term plans for the series?
ED: I have a dozen issues of Rebel Yell scripted, three or four of which I hope to launch a year (all total, over a hundred pages annually). I hope to get enough of a base that we can expand into some other minor areas as well. I have a pop-culture magazine, reminiscent of the old gem Nintendo Power, that I’ve been working on. It’s about halfway through. I don’t know if there’d be much interest in that, but it’s fun nonetheless.
You can find out more about Electric Dinosaur and purchase Rebel Yell on his website here. You can help fund the next issue here.
Despite many calls for his resignation, from members of the public, leaders in his own party, various talking heads and celebrities, Northam has so far refused to step down. However, he has apologized for the errors of his past, and has acquiesced to doing penance in order to redeem himself. Northam's advisers have given him reading assignments, such as Roots, and “The Case for Reparations,” by Ta-Nehisi Coates. Among other things, Northam has also pledged to take a harder line on the removal of Confederate monuments, stating “if there are statues, if there are monuments out there that provoke this type of hatred and bigotry, they need to be in museums.”
This pledge is contemptible for many reasons. First, Northam readily concedes the Confederate monuments are symbols of "hate." Though Southerners are used to being accused of "hate" for celebrating their honorable ancestors and heroes, seeing an unprincipled and gutless fellow Southerner concede the point without dispute, for the sake of naked self-interest, is repugnant.
Second, what on earth do the monuments have to do with Northam's classless behaviour in his school years? Is he claiming that the supposed sins of his forefathers compelled him to wear unseemly costumes in college? Are the statues of great Confederate generals the proximate cause of his poor judgement? Furthermore, why should those who cherish and wish to preserve these monuments be expected to sacrifice to atone for the personal behaviour of Northam?
Of course, the assumption of the political class is that Virginia has yet to be cleansed of its historic sins. There is more work to do to fully eradicate the legacy of slavery and the poison of racism from the state. Purging reminders of its shameful past is an important step. The priestly class has so proclaimed, and to save his career, Northam is gladly genuflecting before them.
The the connection between Northam and the Confederacy is assumed by many to exist, however, those who honor the likes of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson bear no claim to Northam. If not for its growing population of Northerners and spillover from the DC swamp, the Democratic party would be irrelevant in the once lovely state. And I shudder to think how our devoutly religious forefathers would have dealt with anyone arguing the merits of late-term abortion. It is unfair to attribute the Northam fiasco to Southern history and culture, but it is being done nonetheless.
The Carolina Contrarian, Anne Wilson Smith, is the author of Charlottesville Untold: Inside Unite the Right. She is a soft-spoken Southern belle by day, opinionated writer by night. She loves Jesus, her family, and her hometown. She enjoys floral dresses and acoustic guitar music. You may contact Carolina Contrarian at CarolinaContrarian@protonmail.com.