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FSU Students for a Democratic Society condemns Patriot Front organizing in South Florida

By Students for a Democratic Society

Fight Back News Service is circulating the followings statement from FSU Students for a Democratic Society (SDS).

On July 2nd, less than 100 Patriot Front members from across the country convened in Boston for a march through the downtown. Patriot Front is a white nationalist hate group that engages in street protests, offensive attack training, and utilizes American fascist imagery for propaganda and recruitment purposes. Outfitted with steel police shields and flags depicting the fasces, a symbol used by Mussolini’s National Fascist Party, the cowardly group marched with their faces covered in an attempted show of force. Additionally, members assaulted a local man, requiring him to be transported to the hospital. No arrests were made.

This kind of “show of force” is not new for the group, especially in recent months. On December 4th, nearly 100 members traveled to DC to march on the National Mall while carrying shields and chanting “Reclaim America.” On June 11th, 31 members of Patriot Front from across the country were arrested outside of a local Pride event in Idaho. They were arrested with riot gear, a smoke grenade, shields and a written plan for their attempted riot.

There is a consistent trend in these actions that must be discussed: the mass traveling of people from across the country to show an inflated number of members. We know from leaked messages and police reports that the members attending these acts of intimidation have coordinated travel across state lines. Additionally, leaked chats have shown that members are required to commit vandalism and attend these events to be a part of the group. This shows that any identified Patriot Front member must be treated as an active threat to the community they are invading.

Member Calvin Stow-Ortiz, alias Arthur FL, has proven to be a highly motivated fascist; he travels hundreds of miles for events, engages in marching and hand-to-hand training activities, and is being used to further recruit at Florida State University and in the greater Tallahassee area. Stow-Ortiz, stepson of a Tampa Police Department officer Antonio Ortiz-Saldana, has traveled to DC, Georgia, and throughout Florida to engage in vandalism and fascist organizing. He was identified en route to Boston and there are reports of his being in Massachusetts over the weekend. This evidence, as well as historical precedence, leaves us with little doubt that Stow-Ortiz was present at this march.

FSU Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) will continue their calls for the removal of Stow-Ortiz from Florida State University, which would greatly hamper his fascist recruitment and propagandizing. FSU administration has been completely ineffective at protecting students from an active fascist presence on their campus. They will continue to turn a blind eye until it is too late. FSU SDS calls on all people (classmates, teachers, etc.) who know Calvin Stow-Ortiz to isolate this fascist. The university and the police will not do anything without outside pressure, which is why everyday people must act. We keep us safe!

#Florida #FL #StudentsForADemocraticSocietySDS #Antiracism #Antifascism