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Understanding Fascism: Dr. Michael Loadenthal is the Bunting Peace and Justice Speaker

Understanding Fascism: Dr. Michael Loadenthal is the Bunting Peace and Justice Speaker

The Andrew White Student Center welcomed Dr. Michael Loadenthal at the annual Bunting Peace and Justice Speaker Series. Loadenthal’s presentation was titled “Anti-Fascism & Movement Repression: Exploring Social Movements and Policing.” The point of this event was to invite guest speakers to Loyola to give a presentation to raise awareness about peace and justice issues around the world.  

Loadenthal talked about the importance of understanding what a fascist is and how the topic is not talked about enough. We may say certain things not knowing that they may be viewed as hostile towards others. 

“Fascism is defined historically by extreme central authority, extreme ties to the state, nation and typically defamation of the media,” he said.

This is the case when the media is called the enemy of the people. Those saying statements like these are only referring to one media outlet, typically the ones that they do not agree with politically. Politicians and government officials make similar statements without taking into consideration their status. The statements that they make hold a lot of weight especially among their supporters. 

An event that occurred in America that Loadenthal believed was done purely because of fascisism was the raid on the Capital on January 6. The raid on the Capital happened as a result of former President Donald Trump losing the presidential election to President Joe Biden. Angered Trump supporters rioted and vandalized the Capital building in Washington DC. 

“The attack on the Capital was a terrible display of what happens when you have someone giving their supporters false information that weaponizes their anger. Leaders of countries should have a neutral standing when it comes to certain views especially if the outcome can put other people in danger.”

Trump told the media that they were making things seem much worse than they actually were. 

Loadenthal closed out his talk with a disclaimer to those in the audience. He clarified that what fascists are doing may not be right but as an anti-fascist you should only do peaceful protest. He stated that he was not promoting going out and being violent or making reckless decisions. 

“I don’t want to give the impression that anti-fascism is inherently violent. Many protests end in arrest and some end in people getting hurt but if you are passionate about something you should try your hardest to protect it,” Loadenthal said. 

For more information on future Bunting Peace and Justice Speakers visit the Loyola Peace and Justice website. 


Featured Image courtesy of Howard Wicker. 

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Understanding Fascism: Dr. Michael Loadenthal is the Bunting Peace and Justice Speaker