Our Urge To Criticize The Left Almost Harmed An Innocent Man

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The violence that occurred today in Charlottesville, Virginia created much conflict in Libertarian circles. Some were calling the actions of the alt-right deplorable, and some were defending them by claiming that Antifa outnumbered the Unite the Right participants, and that they were only defending the aggression from radical leftists.

As happens in such a tragedy, many were looking for someone to point fingers towards in regards to the driver of the Dodge Challenger who ran over the leftist counter-protestors and killed one person. Hours after the event and a photo emerged with the license plate of the car, the internet did what it does best and tracked down who they thought was the criminal.

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The above picture quickly began to circulate with comments on how dumb the left was for injuring their own people. It seemed that many in my conservative circles were taking this picture at face value and attempting to point the blame entirely on the leftist protesters (even though at the time, it was not 100% confirmed that it was even a right protester).

Unfortunately, this was not the case. The man pictured does not own the car pictured and was not even in Virginia to commit the crime. Below is a post from the accused:

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Frankly, I was shocked and appalled that libertarians need to find a way to criticize the left and place the blame on this event could have led to harming an innocent man. The ideology of reason became as much a part of the mob mentality as the alt-righters and Antifa members who turned Charlottesville into a battleground.

Libertarians have to be better than these far-left and far-right extremists. We cannot fall victim to defending Fascism and white nationalism simply to be anti-left. Libertarianism isn’t an anti-left ideology, it’s a liberty ideology.

Update: More evidence that Mr. VanGheluwe was not the killer.

Update: An Ohio man has been arrested as the suspect of the car killing. Source 

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Author: Luke Henderson

Since joining the Libertarian Party in 2016 (after discovering Gary Johnson as a disaffected Bernie Sanders supporter), Luke Henderson has been active in the liberty movement through journalism, and political activism. At the beginning of 2017, Luke had his first piece of writing published by Being Libertarian and quickly became a contributor to the libertarian news site, The Libertarian Vindicator. Through the Vindicator, Luke discovered his passion for addressing critics of the philosophy and bringing together different factions of liberty lovers which compelled him to become an editor for The Libertarian Coalition, a forum dedicated to an open-minded discussion of libertarian ideas from all walks. After many guest contributions to Being Libertarian, Luke was asked to join the website as a contributor, where he writes his column Scoring For Liberty, which discusses sports, politics, and economics from a libertarian lens, and his Educator series that seeks to strengthen libertarian’s understanding of educational techniques and policy to better arguments against public education. Luke is one of the District 1 Executive Committeemen for the Missouri Libertarian party, and the founder of the Missouri Chapter of the Libertarian Positivity Caucus. Outside of politics, Luke is a paraprofessional for the Special School District of St. Louis, a musician, composer, and a loving husband and father.

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