A rally headlined by President Donald Trump last night in Phoenix, Arizona drew large crowds but did not bring the political violence that many feared would come with Trump’s first major public appearance since his widely-criticized response to the race-based violence in Charlottesville, Virginia over a week ago.
But that doesn’t mean some protesters weren’t at least prepared for violence. Like a protest earlier this summer, members of the “John Brown Gun Club” and “Redneck Revolt” made an appearance to reportedly protect left-wing protesters from white nationalists.
Jack Murphy previously wrote about armed leftists in Arizona, who also were claiming to be associated with the “Redneck Revolt”. According to their website, the group claims it is a “pro-worker, anti-racist organization that focuses on working class liberation from the oppressive systems which dominate our lives. In states where it is legal to practice armed community defense, many branches choose to become John Brown Gun Clubs, training ourselves and our communities in defense and mutual aid.”
The group says its members have diverse ideological backgrounds, but the politics espoused in its literature and Facebook page show a clear militant leftist bent, extolling the use of violence to pursue causes related to social justice. Referring to its armed elements as “John Brown Gun Clubs” is one indication. John Brown was an abolitionist who tried to initiate a slave insurrection by attacking and murdering supporters of slavery, and leading an assault on a federal armory at Harper’s Ferry, an event which led to his capture and hanging.