A writer for the Huffington Post is defending his recent op-ed that "a violent response” is the “logical” approach to stopping presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump.
Jesse Benn wrote in the op-ed titled “Sorry Liberals, A Violent Response To Trump Is As Logical As Any,” posted on Monday, “[T]here’s an inherent value in forestalling Trump’s normalization. Violent resistance accomplishes this.”
"These denunciations of violence from anti-Trump protestors rest on the misguided view that the divide Trump’s exposed is a typical political disagreement between partisans, and should be handled as such.," he wrote. "This couldn’t be further from the truth. Trump might not be a fascist in the 20th century European sense of the term—though many of his supporters are—but he might represent its 21st century US version."
"Violent resistance matters. Riots can lead to major change," Benn wrote. "It’s not liberal politicians or masses that historians identify as the spark underlying the modern movement for LGBTQ equality. Nor was it a think piece from some smarmy liberal writer. It was the people who took to the streets during the Stonewall Uprising."
"Assuming anti-Trump protests should be strictly focused on electoral politics and not these broader goals would be a detrimental oversight," he wrote. "Understanding European anti-fascists use of violent tactics to shut down large rallies from White Supremacists can be illustrative here. Because while Trump isn’t leading full bore White Supremacist rallies, there is value in making it clear that even his fascism-lite has no place in civilized society."
Benn took to Twitter to defend his piece.
"It is funny I wrote that piece specifically calling out liberals but it’s #AltRight fanatics/White Supremacists throwing a tantrum over it," he wrote.
He also received plenty of backlash online.
@JesseBenn I think your beliefs are dangerous so i hope you get mugged on the way home. Its for the good of America really.— Plutonium Field (@PlutoniumField) June 8, 2016
If that wasn’t enough, The Huffington Post also included a not-so-subtle “editor’s note” at the bottom of an article Wednesday on a survey about Trump’s controversial Latino judge comments. The addendum noted: “Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.”
All this comes nearly a week after an editor with the website Vox was suspended for a series of tweets encouraging protesters to "start a riot" at Donald Trump rallies – shortly after the Republican candidate's supporters were attacked outside a San Jose rally the night before.
"We welcome a variety of viewpoints, but we do not condone writing that could put others in danger,” the site's founder, Ezra Klein, said in a statement announcing the suspension of Emmett Rensin.
Rensin, deputy editor for the site's first-person section, had taken to Twitter as reports first emerged of the chaotic scenes last Thursday night outside the California rally, where protesters confronted supporters of the presumptive GOP nominee as they departed. Supporters were punched, and one woman was seen on film being hit with an egg and other trash.