Follow the Trail: Monetizing Racism & Unrest?
I recently discovered a trail of connections online that I want to share with you and get your thoughts on. I’ve got friends on both sides of the political aisle (hopefully we all do!) and no matter what your politics are, the business affiliation between the organizations shown below should, at a minimum, prompt some tough questions.
Open your browser and type in antifa.com. You’ll be taken directly to Joe Biden’s campaign page. Next click on the donate button and you’ll be taken to a payment gateway page that is hosted by actblue.com. (Note the address bar in the browser image below.)
Now go to blacklivesmatter.com and click the donate button. You will be taken to another payment gateway page that is hosted by actblue.com:
Who is ActBlue.com?
On their website, ActBlue describes themselves as “a powerful online fundraising platform for Democratic candidates up and down the ballot.” Every party has a right and duty to fundraise for their vision, of course. It makes good sense for the Biden/Harris ticket to use the ActBlue platform for their online donations. No problem there.
However, the financial ties demonstrated above between the Democrat party, BLM, and Antifa is not so cut and dry. Regardless of your political persuasion, the fact that online donations to Antifa and BLM are funneled through a payment gateway that powers the Democrat party should, at the very least, raise some questions.
First, does it seem right that any political party should make money off of the racial unrest and BLM protests around the country? Whether or not you support the BLM organization, using ActBlue as a payment gateway means that, in a very real sense, the higher the racial tensions and the more BLM protests there are, the more money the Democrat party stands to make. Which is why this is a troubling affiliation.
Second, does it seem right that a political party should want to be associated with the chaos, destruction, and bullying used by Antifa? Even if we agree with Antifa’s political beliefs, it’s a whole other thing to endorse their aggressive tactics. This is why funneling Antifa web traffic directly to JoeBiden.com is another troubling affiliation.
In Biden’s defense, you can’t control who chooses to link to your website. That said, his campaign certainly knows the link is there, and there are easy ways to reject incoming traffic from particular sources. I wonder if Biden or Harris has made public statements denouncing Antifa and asking them to remove that link? Maybe their team has contacted Antifa directly to get that link removed? (If so, let me know in the comments below.)
Even if it falls short of an official affiliation, Antifa’s decision to forward all its web traffic to the Biden/Harris site says something. Antifa must believe it is to their advantage to affiliate themselves with the Biden/Harris ticket. They see some value in sending all of their web traffic to a website that collects donations for the Democrat presidential nominee. Which, again, is absolutely their right to do. I’m just contemplating what it means.
Don’t get me wrong. If you are a left-leaning American of the progressive persuasion who also happens to be a robust supporter of Antifa and BLM, then congratulations, you’ve hit the jackpot! That’s a big win for you. But what about the tens of millions of Americans in the middle? What about people, like me, who are completely opposed to racism and want to love and support our black friends and neighbors, but are not willing to support BLM as an organization? What about people, like me, who are opposed to corporate greed and harmful business practices, but we’re certainly not going to help fund Antifa? Because of its financial ties with groups like Antifa and BLM, is the Democrat party even a viable option for us?
It’s something worth thinking about.