1984: Thread

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com
Sun Apr 11 09:38:52 PDT 2021

Critique and expose politicians... get boots... lol...

(where original tweet?)

Anti-War Activist Visited By Police After Posting Embarrassing AOC Video

Authored by Max Blumenthal via The GrayZone.com,

An anti-war activist said he was visited by California Highway Patrol
officers after posting video of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s
bumbling comments on Israel-Palestine. The action, which AOC denies
triggering, was initiated by a call to US Capitol Police.

As he waited for a food delivery at his home in Los Angeles on April
8, Ryan Wentz, an anti-war activist and producer for the online viral
program, Soapbox, heard two men calling his name from over his front
gate. When he approached, he realized they were not delivery drivers,
but police officers flashing badges of the California Highway Patrol.

The cops informed Wentz that they had received a call from the Capitol
Police, the federal law enforcement agency tasked with protecting the
US Congress, about a tweet he had sent that allegedly threatened Rep.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Wentz told The Grayzone, "The officers said, 'We got a warning about a
sitting member of Congress. And it was because of your tweet, which
tagged them in it. And then they just wouldn’t back down from this
accusation that I threatened to kill her.'"

    (2/X) I assume this is the tweet they are talking about, where I
lightly criticized @AOC for a disappointing answer in response to a
question about Palestine/Israel. https://t.co/vNfGcctgsR
    — Human Rights Watch Watcher (@queeralamode) April 8, 2021

The California Highway Patrol indicated on Twitter that it had acted
on a call from Capitol Police. Update: A spokesperson for AOC has
denied to Intercept reporter Ryan Grim that their office reported
Wentz’s post, and has "asked Capitol Police to look into what happened

The police visit Wentz received may be part of a wider trend of
post-January 6 police intervention in social media criticism of
members of Congress.

Though AOC’s office has denied falsely informing Capitol Police of an
online threat by Wentz, the Democratic congresswoman has in the past
asked her supporters to report critics to social media censors.

    The CHP often assists in investigations at the request of allied
agencies. Please contact the U.S. Capitol Police for additional
    — CHP Headquarters (@CHP_HQ) April 9, 2021

    No basis to assume AOC is responsible for this without evidence,
but regardless, this is a very serious incident if the Capitol Police
are dispatching armed police officers to citizens' homes in response
to non-violent criticisms of a politician's statements. It's
repressive. https://t.co/rVm8WJiQwA
    — Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) April 9, 2021

Whoever called the police on Wentz furnished law enforcement with a
patently false allegation, as he has never threatened violence against
any member of Congress. In the tweet that triggered the police action,
Wentz merely posted video of AOC delivering a vapid and embarrassingly
convoluted answer to a question about resolving the crisis in
Israel-Palestine. Describing her answer as "incredibly underwhelming,"
he let the congresswoman’s cringeworthy commentary speak for itself.

Asked by Michael S. Miller of the New York Jewish Community Relations
Council about actions that could be taken to support movements towards
peace between Jewish Israelis and Palestinians, AOC responded as

    Earlier just now you and I were talking about the what and the
how. And I think that when we talk about peace, centering people’s
humanity, protecting people’s rights – it’s not just about the what
and the end goal which actually gets a lot of focus, but I actually
think it’s much more about the how, and the way we are coming
together, and how we interpret that what, and how we act in, you know,
the actions we take to get to that what. So what this really is about
is a question more than anything else about process. And we really
need to make sure that we are valuing a process where all parties are
respected and have, you know, a lot of equal opportunity to really
make sure we are negotiating in good faith, etcetera. That being said,
you know, I think there’s just this one central issue of settlements,
because if the what – if the what has been decided on as two state,
then the action of settlements, it’s not the how to get to that what.
And so, you know, I think that’s a central thing that, you know, we
center. And that we value Jewish and rather, we value Israeli, uh, uh,
uh, we value the safety and human rights of Israelis, we value the
safety and human rights of Palestinians, in that process that is
similar, and that is on equal footing. And so all of that is extremely
important in that process.

The video that Wentz tweeted of AOC’s long-winded dodge of a
fundamental question about resolving the Israeli occupation of
Palestine prompted a flood of online mockery and contempt, mostly from
leftist Twitter users. Many derided AOC as a careerist who had
abandoned progressive causes like Palestinian liberation in order to
curry favor with Democratic Party power brokers, while others
ridiculed her meaningless word salad.

    I'm incredibly impressed with @AOC's Obama-like ability to fill
large amounts of time with words while saying absolutely nothing. I
challenge anyone to tell me what she just said.
    — Ali Abunimah (@AliAbunimah) April 7, 2021

Within hours of the online pile-on, someone reported Wentz to the
Capitol Police for tweeting the video that embarrassed AOC. Because
Wentz does not provide any information about his personal identity in
his public Twitter profile, the social media giant appeared to have
provided his private details to federal law enforcement.

"Another weird thing is usually I would get a report [from Twitter],"
Wentz said, "because I’ve gotten my tweets reported before. But I
didn’t get any notification about this."

AOC’s staff has previously appealed to social media censors to
suppress online criticism. On February 4, 2021, her campaign sent a
mass email to supporters asking them to "scan your social media to
find posts with misleading information" about the congresswoman, and
"use the built-in report feature to flag them for moderators."

Team AOC issued its appeal for supporters to police social media in
response to right-wing mockery of a dramatic livestream in which AOC
suggested that the mob which stormed the Capitol building on January 6
nearly assassinated her.

"I just hear these yells of 'WHERE IS SHE? WHERE IS SHE?'" she
recounted in the livestream. "This was the moment where I thought
everything was over. I thought I was going to die."

However, the source of the yells which had terrified AOC turned out to
be a Capitol Police officer who had been dispatched to protect her.
Further, the congresswoman’s office was located in the Cannon House
Office Building, which had not been penetrated by any rioters on
January 6.

Right-wing activists and other political foes of AOC exploited these
points to launch a viral hashtag likening the congresswoman to Jussie
Smollet, the actor who faked an attack on himself. After attempting to
challenge her critics directly, AOC delegated her staff to dispatch
its army of supporters to report critics en masse to Twitter and
Facebook censors.

Weeks earlier, online podcaster Jimmy Dore had initiated a "Force The
Vote" campaign to pressure AOC and fellow members of the progressive
congressional "Squad" to withhold their votes for Rep. Nancy Pelosi as
Speaker of the House until Pelosi agreed to bring a bill for Medicare
for All to the floor for a vote.

In response to incendiary criticism from Dore for her refusal to buck
centrist party leadership, AOC declared, "That’s not tone, that’s

    RT: briebriejoy “15 million people have lost their employer-based
health care in the middle of a global pandemic, and barely half of
House Democrats support Medicare for All even though 88% of their
constituents do.

    That’s violence.” #ForceTheVote https://t.co/fSD8qwsINJ
    — Jimmy Dore (@jimmy_dore) January 2, 2021

According to Wentz, the police officers that visited him asked if he
had any violent intent behind his tweet, then left. "If this was like
a purely intimidation thing," he reflected, "then I guess it did its
job. It’s not comforting to be on the receiving end of that. But at
the same time, they’re not going to shut the left up."

Wentz’s disturbing encounter with law enforcement appears to be part
of an emerging trend. On the same date law enforcement visited him, a
Twitter user posted photos of alleged federal agents on their front
lawn and claimed, "FBI just came by my house for a tweet to Ted Cruz."

    FBI just came by my house for a tweet to Ted Cruz.
    — the1312ronin (@theoneronin1312) April 8, 2021

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