The Greek government has hinted that it will seek to ban Golden Dawn after the far-right party was linked to the murder of a leading leftwing musician in Athens.
As violence erupted on the streets and demonstrators protested after the fatal stabbing of Pavlos Fyssas, a prominent anti-fascist, the public order minister, Nikos Dendias, cancelled a trip abroad saying the government would table emergency legislation that would seek to outlaw the group.
Amid renewed political tensions between the extreme left and right, the new law would re-evaluate what constituted a criminal gang, he said.
“Neither the state will tolerate, nor society accept, acts and practices that undermine the legal system,” the minister told reporters, adding that the attack showed “in the clearest way the [party’s] intentions”.
Are Golden Dawn fascists?
Pretty much from what I can see.
Does that mean that a party that is represented in Parliament should be banned? I’m afraid that I can’t see a useful version of democracy where such a thing can be done.
The background is that there was a murder by what appears to be a group of Golden Dawn thugs. This is certainly a justification for the prosecution and trial of those potentially responsible for that murder. And if it becomes apparent that officials of the political party planned or even turned a blind eye to such plans then yes, they should indeed be similarly tried.
But banning a political party because a member/some members murdered someone just doesn’t fly I’m afraid.
Yes, yes, I know about all the “no platform” stuff but everyone does indeed get the freedom of association no matter how vile their views. The various Stalinists, Maoists (there’s even a few Juche groups about) Trots and the rest get to form political parties if they so wish despite the vileness of the views expressed. Therefore so do fascists, racists and if there was a group that wanted to associate in order to promote the revival of chattel slavery then they too have the right to exist as a group and contest elections.
Another way to put this is that we don’t ban people for being fascists for the same reason that we don’t ban political parties for not being fascists. Because we’re not fucking fascists.