Over the last few years, the Denver area has witnessed a resurgence of fascist and neo-Nazi activity. From Fort Collins to Colorado Springs and beyond, fascists have spread hatred in ways and at rates not witnessed in recent memory. They have shown themselves openly several times at events such as the All Ages Drag Show hosted by Mile High Comics and a Turning Points USA event in Fort Collins last year. The only tangible defense against these groups, time and again, has been antifascists who are committed to community defense. On October 31st 2019, several of these repugnant Neo-Nazis engaged in acts that can only be described as an informational terror campaign across the Denver area. They started their day with dropping a banner containing an anti-Semitic message and continued by threatening violence against the Jewish community as well as harrassing the public at several businesses in noted Jewish Denver neighborhoods. The terror campaign was only interrupted when the propagandists were confronted by several community defenders. If that was where the story ended, this would be a good finish to what had been a terrible day.
But there’s a problem
Unfortunately and despite the best efforts of the community defenders, the situation was escalated when one of the fascists attempted to enact a citizen's arrest against the community defenders. This act in and of itself constitutes false imprisonment and justifies self-defense. Police were contacted and citations issued to all parties present, one was taken into custody and another had their property confiscated for unknown reasons. The police were suspiciously tolerant of the fascists, even allowing them to collaborate while creating their witness statements of events when normally, witnesses are separated from one another as to prevent collaboration and tampering. Thus, it seems to fit the pattern of the law enforcement's well documented affinity for right wing activists. The deck is stacked against the brave souls who took great personal risk to defend the community against a coordinated attack by Neo-Nazis. They remain undeterred and plan to contest their charges in court. That said, none of them are wealthy, needing support for the direct effects of that day, as well as for their upcoming trials.
Here’s what we’re doing about it
Just as they did on Halloween, this group intends to fight back against repression by taking their cases to trial, in most cases. We are asking for any pro-bono legal support as well as donations to provide for lawyers, travel, and incidental costs associated with the courageous acts our friends and neighbors engaged in while confronting openly anti-Semitic propagandists. Incidental costs will be closely monitored and accounted for. Any donation of services will be administered as quickly and clearly as is possible to the defenders and their (future,) legal team. Without people who are willing to put their lives and freedom on the line to resist the ever growing fascist menace, we all stand to fall under the bootheel of this twisted ideology. These community defenders are the frontline, as the government and its agents have proven both unwilling and unable at different turns, that stands to provide any kind of relief to the greater Denver community, especially those who are typically targeted by fascism including, People of Color, LGBTQIA, the economically disadvantaged, and antifascist activists. Please help those who live to protect you and the wider community. Your contribution, no matter how large or small, whether in funding or direct legal services, will make a difference in fighting fascism on the street level. Thank you!