Some of the Refuse Fascism people ducked into Revolution Books followed by Trump supporters. pic.twitter.com/EZvfgO9GMv— Javier Panzar (@jpanzar) September 24, 2017
Though the Berkeley Patriot cancelled "Free Speech Week" and right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos' "talk" amounted to nothing but a 15-minute photo-op, the backlash from alt-right and and right-wing protesters continues in Berkeley. This time, they targeted Revolution Books on Durant Ave, a bookstore that specializes in communist and social justice literature.
According to the Daily Californian, Revolution Books has been targeted by these right-wing protesters at least three times in the past two days. Reiko Redmonde, manager at the bookstore, said, "These fascists were yelling very crude things at us. They represent the opposite of what the store is." At a press conference regarding one such protest, Redmonde described the scene on Sunday, saying, "It was like a mob. It was like you see in the movies, like the KKK, but without the sheets." Refuse Fascism, an organization dedicated to combating fascism through activism, posted a video on Twitter of the group chanting "USA, USA" outside of the bookstore.
Several employees of Revolution Books also described some of the so-called follow-up "protests" to the Daily Cal, saying that the mob yelled insults and threats like "Die commie scum" while pelting them with rape threats. It should be noted that demonstrations against racism and fascism don't typically include rape or death threats, but I digress. Employees also said that many of the "protesters" were wearing "Make America Great Again" hats. In the Twitter video above, you can see a couple of those red hats on the heads of various people in the group.
Both Berkeleyside and the Daily Cal point out that one of the members of the protesting group is Antonio Foreman, a noted alt-right figure, Trump supporter, and member of the Oath Keepers, a far-right, pro-gun Libertarian organization who can often be spotted sporting rifles and weapons at various demonstrations and rallies. Perhaps most notably, they were very visible at the Charlottesville "Unite the Right" rally, which drew various white supremacists and neo-Nazi groups though the Oath Keepers don't necessarily espouse the views of the white supremacists they protect, they are staunchly opposed to any threats to free speech.
In subsequent actions against the bookstore, neighboring organizations like the Animal Rights Center have come out to help protect and support Revolution Books, and every time the group has attempted to enter or disrupt business in the store, the shopping center's security have escorted them out.
Kriss Worthington, Berkeley City Councilmember, commented on the actions to Berkeleyside, saying, "They are clearly not coming to buy books. It appears to be intimidation and harassment. I am glad that nobody seems to be getting beat up, but it is worrisome when so many people show up and try to scare them."