Shia LeBouf Arrested on LiveCam After Shouting Down Racist
It’s a form of performance art, one that has already drawn attention from people looking to thwart it. If you thought that Trump’s presidency attracted white supremacists, racists and bigots, and if you feared that they now have a voice to spew across the nation, you might have proof from the video clips below.
It sounds innocent enough: Shia LeBouf has set up a live cam for people to approach and say “He will not divide us.” It is simple, but it’s message threatens white supremacists, because the live cam was set up on Donald Trump’s inauguration. Or, because white supremacists are just easily threatened and incredibly rude. Someone has a video stream set up, and people are talking on it, and the racist enters and wants to ruin it. Why?
At some point during the charged interactions, LeBouf is arrested. Watch that video below. But why was he arrested?
What is certain about that video is that Shia appears unrepentant. Perhaps his arrest stems from this incident below, in which a white supremacist approaches the camera to shout inflammatory comments. I watched the seen and thought there was a fight brewing. It’s clear that Labeouf doesn’t appreciate racists shouting into his camera, but is this really enough for arrest? Why not arrest the man who clearly is shoulder to shoulder with Lebeouf to shout racist comments? He is laughing. Shia is not.
Lest you think that this sort of harassment was unintentional, accidental maybe, check out the conversations below, where BuzzFeed reported that white supremacists have been using chat rooms to try to organize to take down Shia’s protest.
We can ask why, but I don’t think there is a good answer except that the discourse has changed. Trump has made it politically acceptable to attack people with outright lies (Alternative Facts, a term coined by Kellyanne Conway, but that’s a whole other post), and it’s not met with rebuttal.
The white supremacist using Shia’s feed approaches to make incendiary commentary, words used by white supremacists and Nazis, a tribute to Hitler and the deeply disturbing concept of the Aryan race (white, blonde hair, blue eyes). According to BuzzFeed, the commentary from the the disruptor means this:
“14, 88” is a code among neo-Nazis and white supremacists referring to one of two 14-word pledges repeated by members of the Aryan Nation: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children” or “Because the beauty of the White Aryan woman must not perish from the earth.” The repetition of “88” refers to the eighth letter of the alphabet, “H,” which is how neo-Nazis abbreviate “heil Hitler” so they can quietly signal each other.
Not only does Shia instantly grasp what the white supremacist is saying, he actively blocks it. While I hate to see two men pushing in a dance that leads to punching, I am proud of Shia for not letting his project be railroaded. I am proud that there is a person who is willing to fight to block the rising level of racist dialogue emanating from Trump’s presidency, not to mention Nazism, which has been name-dropped more frequently with a Trump presidency than any other in recent history.
It’s an amped up “discussion,” with pretty sick commentary.
It’s pointed, and it’s designed to attack Shia, very intentional.
Confession time: I made a mistake and read the comments under posts like this.
It’s shallow, and usually I don’t indulge because one person’s “comment” is another’s form of hate speech, but this time, I wanted to see if there was any brevity. For some Trump supporters, there is the argument that America was “great in the 60’s” because Republicans led the civil rights movement (no, I didn’t make that up), and for others, it’s a point of person pride to attack people who profess Nazi beliefs. There were also comments about how Shia succeed in producing performance art, pretty indicative of what is going on in American politics, and my own perspective? It’s fascinating that so many people are willing to join in the performance art. So many people have started alternate threads, argued points, showed up to speak. Pretty amazing involvement. Now, if we can just prevent violence there.