“Let the David Dukes and the Don Blacks worry about Mr. Taylor’s rights.”

(Note, Feb. 19: the discussion continues.)

Anyone should be able to have a conference, to assemble and to speak with likeminded people. The systematic attack on the American Renaissance conference, the use of death threats to get the conference canceled by one hotel after another, is an outrage. Therefore, even though I have had no association with Jared Taylor since 1996, my instinctive reaction was to express concern over the cancellation of his conference, which threatens the basic freedoms of all of us. But last night something was brought to my attention which reminded me why I had dissociated myself from Jared Taylor in the first place.

Last night I sent this to several people:

On February 16, Jared Taylor appeared on Derek Black’s radio program to talk the problems with his conference (Taylor comes on at around 35 minutes into the show). Don Black, the founder of the website Stormfront, substituted for his son.

Black’s a Nazi type, right? He’s a supporter of the exterminationist anti-Semite William Pierce. And Taylor is pals with him.

And I’m expressing solidarity with Taylor over his conference being canceled?

One of my correspondents, Mike Berman, replied:

That’s what I’ve been saying all along. Let the Dukes and the Blacks worry about Mr. Taylor’s rights. Here’s what I wrote to ___ and ___ last night:

What am I to think? How am I supposed to agree with what the Mossad did to someone who killed and planned to kill more Jews and then worry about freedom of speech for those who would do it too if they could? Yeah, some of Mr. Taylor’s friends are Jooze, but some of his best friends are Nazis as well. His big mistake was allowing Duke into his world.

Mr. Taylor thought it was great that “15 percent of conference attendees are Jews and 15 percent neo-Nazis.” Well, it seems to have backfired on him in the end.

See VFR entries about Jared Taylor and American Renaissance following the 2006 AR conference when Taylor allowed David Duke to attend the conference along with many Stormfront followers, and various anti-Semitic manifestations occurred.

- end of initial entry -

Derek C. writes:

I think it was H.L. Mencken who put it best: “The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.”

Michael Hart writes:

I must emphatically disagree with the view expressed by Michael Berman. If the rights of Jared Taylor (and those of his supporters whom we detest) to freedom of speech are not protected, neither will ours be.

At a practical matter, we have little to fear from the Donald Black or his ilk. We have much to fear from those who would shut down Jared Taylor, and Arthur Jensen, and Geert Wilders (and you and me) if they could.

I detest such people as David Duke and Joseph Sobran. But I consider it both unprincipled and short-sighted not to defend their right to freedom of speech.

LA replies:

Of course Taylor and anyone should be able to hold a conference—a perfectly legal activity, as Taylor pointed out in the interview—without interference and without criminal threats of violence making it impossible to hold the conference.

So: I support Jared Taylor’s right to speak and to assemble with like-minded people in a conference. The individuals and groups who used criminal threats of violence to stop this conference should be apprehended and prosecuted. The hotels which agreed to host the conference and then canceled it should be condemned. Media, especially conservative media, which ignore these jackboot tactics from the left should be criticized.

But beyond that, I don’t want to express any solidarity with Taylor. While he himself is not a Nazi or an anti-Semite, his willing association with Nazis and serious anti-Semites makes me sick.

Mike Berman writes:

There was a time when I used to participate in the American Renaissance forum. The general consensus there was to let Jews participate. But after their dreamed of victory … you know .. wink, wink. I’ll not be a useful idiot.

February 19

Dan R. writes:

To dismiss this issue as Mike Berman (in the title of this entry) does is just wrong on several levels. Michael Hart points out one, and I will go a step further: the statement is tantamount to a disavowal of the very principle of freedom of speech. On another level, it isn’t just Jared Taylor’s rights being violated, but those of anyone who wished to attend the conference. One needn’t be in “solidarity” with Jared Taylor to feel strongly about his right to propound his views and organize an assembly, and I believe you have made that distinction.

I agree that Taylor’s friendliness to the Dukes and Blacks (“His big mistake was allowing Duke into his world”) has provided grist for the brownshirts’ telephone blitz against the would-be host hotels. Having been to several AR conferences, I would offer an opinion as to what might motivate Taylor in this area—that in a society under submission to multiculturalism, their (Duke’s and Black’s) defense of whites holds greater significance than their excesses, coupled with a belief that they can be weaned away from their excesses.

The larger issue is whether a multicultural society is compatible with freedom of speech. All in all, troubling.

LA replies:

You say that Taylor’s friendliness with Black (I don’t know that he’s friendly with Duke, see below) provides grist to the fascist left. You leave out the fact that Taylor’s friendliness with Black, and, generally, his affable willingness to associate with serious anti-Semites, disgusts and repels many people, including myself, who might otherwise be supportive of Taylor, while it forces others, who want to remain supportive of him, to swallow their disgust and accept the unacceptable. In other words, Taylor, by associating with the likes of Don Black, compromises many of his own allies and supporters, if they want to remain his allies and supporters. And that is a disgusting thing to do.

Consider this: that at the very moment when, because of the cancellation of his conference, there was most sympathy with Taylor, at the very moment when there was the most opportunity for him to draw mainstream media attention to the thuggish tactics of the left which threaten all conservatives, at that moment he chose to go on a radio program hosted by the founder of the neo-Nazi website Stormfront. This shows his readiness to compromise his allies and supporters. It shows his indifference to the opinion of decent people. It shows the same (at best) moral obtuseness of his that led me to dissociate myself from him in 1996.

As I wrote at VFR in 2006:

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the hard-core Israel haters and anti-Semites are the scum of the earth. There could arise an American version of Nick Griffin, a former serious anti-Semite who has seriously (not cosmetically) criticized anti-Semitism, removed anti-Semitism from his party platform, and driven unregenerate Nazis and anti-Semites out of his party. But one thing is sadly and definitively clear. Jared Taylor, the guy who just can’t say no (to a Nazi), the guy who in his article about the anti-Semitic doings at his February conference did not even mention the shocking applause for the prospective murder of a fellow Western nation, let alone object to it, is not that man.

So yes, I support Taylor’s right to hold a conference and I’m alarmed by the growing intensity and power of the fascist left which has the ability to make it impossible for Taylor to hold a conference. But Taylor’s association with serious anti-Semites makes it impossible for me to invest any feeling in my support for Taylor’s right to hold a conference.

In a civilized society, Taylor has the right to hold a conference and to be protected from criminal threats of violence. He doesn’t have the right to anyone’s support and approval.


Note: I don’t know that it’s correct to speak of Taylor’s friendliness with David Duke. My understanding is that his only contact with Duke was that he allowed him to attend the 2006 conference (with predictably disastrous results that Taylor lacked the wisdom and prudence to foresee), while Taylor has had friendly relations with Don Black for many years, including having him as a guest at his home.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 18, 2010 11:11 AM | Send

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