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January 23, 2017

Neo-Nazi Richard Spencer getting punched in the face might be the only time violence is actually the answer.

White supremacist and neo-Nazi ally Richard Spencer got punched in the face during a TV interview on Inauguration Day. This video, which has been turned into countless memes, is a powerful reminder that violence is almost never the answer. This might actually be the ONLY time violence has ever been the answer. Let’s check out a few of those memes real quick.

Those are some pretty good memes. Look, violence is bad. I love violent movies and violent video games and the Violent Femmes’ weird cameo on Sabrina, the Teenage Witch as much as the next guy, but I still understand the difference between right and wrong and violence is wrong almost 100% of the time. However, if you’re a Nazi you’re fair game to get punched in the face 100% of the time. Here’s that Sabrina, the Teenage Witch cameo in case you thought I was making it up.

What a weird cameo. Even if you think violence against Nazis is permissible, violence is still ALMOST NEVER the answer. Here’s why violence may have been the best answer in this very specific case: Richard Spencer has built a career spreading racist fear mongering through neo-Nazi rhetoric. Since he got punched in the face, he’s said he might reconsider leaving his house. This is progress! He’s finally considering the real consequences of being Nazi-affiliated, consequences that up until now only included being rich and famous. This one punch might make him think twice about being a Nazi and, because it was broadcast to a large audience, make viewers reconsider following in his footsteps. The violence, which should ALMOST NEVER be used, was probably the right tool for the job in this particular case. Here’s another couple of memes.

Some of you may feel bad for laughing at these memes. I want to remind you all that if you feel sympathy for a Nazi, you’re a Nazi sympathizer. It’s just that simple. Let me say that again because I’m worried some of you may miss this point: Feeling sympathy for a Nazi makes you a Nazi sympathizer. So don’t feel bad. Here’s another meme.

This was also the correct amount of violence. Nobody would enjoy these memes if they featured Richard Spencer getting shot or stabbed. He just got one firm sock to the grill, followed by a look right at the camera like he can’t believe bad stuff happens to him (my favorite part). That’s perfect and exactly what should happen if you’re a Nazi in America. It makes me feel patriotic and here’s a meme to compliment that point.

Also, don’t think this means you should go out looking for Nazis to punch. That’s a crazy way to spend your time. Because violence is ALMOST NEVER EVER EVER the answer. It just so happens that in the single case of celebrity neo-Nazi Richard Spencer getting punched on live TV I am personally totally cool with it. And you probably should be, too.

It’s worth noting he got punched while he was explaining Pepe The Frog, which means there’s a small chance his attacker didn’t even know he’s a neo-Nazi and just punched him in the face for talking about a meme during a TV interview. Violence would not be the answer in that scenario, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t kinda get it.