Winger groups are working themselves into a lather over imaginary Antifa invasions on Facebook and coming to peaceful small town rallies armed to the teeth:
The rally lasted about four hours with Klamath Falls Police Department officers standing between the two sets of protesters. On the north side of the street, protesters chanted “George Floyd.” On the south side of the street, chants of “USA,” and “Go home,” erupted throughout the night.
“A lot of these people came out because they swore that antifa buses were in town,” Brigham said. “They couldn’t believe that I was from here. They thought I must be a black man that came from somewhere else.”
Like nearly every other county in the U.S., Klamath County and the county seat of Klamath Falls have private Facebook groups dedicated to local news, mostly filled with postings about lost dogs, local announcements, and constant chatter about what’s heard over the police scanner. It was on Klamath County’s local Facebook news group that some 4,800 members came to talk about the potential threat of antifa, according to posts reviewed by NBC News.
Since nationwide protests began, President Donald Trump and U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr have without evidence blamed the antifa movement — a loose network of groups made up of radicals who rely on direct action, and sometimes violence, to fight the far right and fascism — for the looting and property damage seen during some of the otherwise peaceful rallies. Last week, Trump announced that he planned to designate antifa as a terrorist organization.
At least this didn’t end in violence, although it seems inevitable that a similar frenzied mob will erupt. Of course, at some point Facebook might stop permitting itself to be used as a forum for baseless conspiracy theo…sorry, I can’t finish this with a straight face.