Riot erupts following Charles Kirk lecture at Colorado State University

Neo-fascists, shouting what was described as a "Nazi slogan," attacked a group of Antifa protesters outside of a venue where conservative activist Charles Kirk had just concluded a lecture. 

The fascists, believed to be connected to the Traditionalist Worker Party, charged a group of anti-fascist protesters as they were dispersing. Police in riot gear moved in to restore order.

The Coloradoan:

Protests around a conservative speaker at Colorado State University on Friday night started peacefully, but quickly turned violent when a group wielding riot shields, large flashlights and face masks emblazoned with skulls stormed a dwindling crowd while chanting a Nazi slogan.

Campus police, who were wearing helmets with riot masks throughout the event, shut down the clash and drove the groups off. Members of the Larimer County Sheriff's Office later showed up wearing tactical gear.

Protesters were drawn to campus because of a speech by conservative activist Charlie Kirk of Turning Point USA, which says on its website is devoted to the promotion of the principles of fiscal responsibility, free markets and limited government.

Protests prior to and during the speech were orderly. The violence broke out while the event was concluding inside the Lory Student Center.

Emeshe Amade, a CSU student, said at first she thought the group chanting the slogans were police breaking up the argument because of how equipped they were. Members of campus socialist groups and self-described anti-fascists were arguing with others at the protest about politics when about a dozen members of the third group stormed.

Kirk disavowed the white nationalist group during his lecture:

Kirk started his speech by distancing himself from ethno-nationalists.

"That BS they're trying to say out there, it's not who we are, it's not what we believe, it's not what Turning Point believes," Kirk said. 

"It's very funny, they say, 'Oh Charlie, you must be an ethno-nationalist because these four people with no lives show up outside your event. First of all, that's a bunch a nonsense. Second of all, I don't remember anyone saying that when all the communists show up to the Democrat events."

But Haley Dallas, a CSU student who wore T-shirt that said "White supremacy is terrorism," on it, suggested some soul searching, even as she supported the right for speech. The Traditional Worker Party describes itself as a socialist organization, and Kirk's event was titled "Smashing Socialism," she noted.

"I just wonder what the draw is," she said. "If they're advocating for socialism and he's not, then there must be something that attracts them to Mr. Kirk."

For the record, Turning Point USA is about as mainstream a conservative group as you can get. As Kirk points out, they are not at all about white nationalism. But any gathering on a college campus featuring a prominent conservative attracts the nutcases like a moth to a flame. The TWP members weren't there to support Kirk. They were there to bash Antifa heads. The clueless snowflake who thinks there is "something that attracts them to Mr. Kirk." should become better informed.

Earlier in the week, the TWP made it known that they would be present at the protest against Kirk. While the police say they were "ready" for them, how is it that a dozen people wearing deaths-head masks and wielding baseball bats got within 100 yards of the protest? The same thing happened at Charlottesville when masked Antifa protesters carrying weapons were allowed to join the "anti-fascist" protesters. These protests are not about politics. They are about trying to hurt those they consider an enemy.

To my mind, Antifa and groups like the Traditionalist Worker Party are no different. They are all about hate and violence and some way must be found to purge them from the mainstream of American politics.



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