Opinion: Call violent leftists what they are — thugs, not activists or demonstrators

Members of the "black bloc" celebrate as they push into Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park during a day of protests in Berkeley on Sunday.
(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: Congratulations to the Times for exposing the racism and hypocrisy of the leftist, violent demonstrators who attacked supporters of President Trump in Berkeley on Sunday. (“Violent demonstrators in Berkeley are thugs, not activists,” editorial, Aug. 29)

The masked “demonstrators” — which, as The Times has editorialized, is an extremely inaccurate term for these thugs — proved that they share the same mentality and consciousness as the racist bigots they protest against. They’re just on different sides of the same issue.

Both the Ku Klux Klan and these masked criminals deserve our condemnation, and I am grateful to The Times for giving it to them.


David Gershenson, Brentwood


To the editor: This is serious. Misguided people are equating anti-fascists with the real Nazis.

They need to understand that Nazism is not a free-speech movement. Those who executed 6 million Jews forfeited their right to free speech. Ask the thousands of American soldiers who lost their lives ridding Europe of the Nazi scourge.

Nazism must be confronted wherever it occurs.

Frank Smathers, Santa Clarita


To the editor: The masked goons attacking law-abiding citizens who are merely exercising free speech (however distasteful) are a disgrace to the civil rights pioneers of this country, who risked their lives in the name of nonviolent protest.

Martin Luther King Jr. is my hero. Gandhi is my hero. The violent thugs in Berkeley would have made them both sick.

Brent Forrester, Pacific Palisades


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