In an apparent effort to get out in front of this nation’s growing swell of increasingly violent left-wing activists, the Trump Department of Justice [DOJ] has controversially demanded that web hosting provider Dreamhost provide the government with over 1.3 million IP addresses connected to an anti-Trump site.
According to TheWrap.com:
The DOJ is looking for Dreamhost to share information from visitors to disruptj20.org — a site that has organized protests against Donald Trump, including his presidential inauguration. In its search warrant, the DOJ calls for Dreamhost to provide emails connected to the site, as well as subscriber information and “names, physical addresses, telephone numbers, and other identifiers.”
So far Dreamhost is resisting the DOJ’s effort.
According to their blog post,
The internet was founded — and continues to survive, in the main — on its democratizing ability to facilitate a free exchange of ideas. Internet users have a reasonable expectation that they will not get swept up in criminal investigations simply by exercising their right to political speech against the government.
We intend to take whatever steps are necessary to support and shield these users from what is, in our view, a very unfocused search and an unlawful request for their personal information.
There has been no comment from the U.S. attorney’s office as of yet, but it’s not difficult to speculate about the reason for the DOJ’s concern.
According to this Atlantic story titled “The Rise of the Violent Left“, one particular left-wing group has called for action against “fascists,” including “marchers with ‘Trump flags’ and ‘red maga hats’ who could ‘normalize support for an orange man who bragged about sexually harassing women and who is waging a war of hate, racism and prejudice.’”
As can be seen in the video [warning: language and violence] below, in which a masked Antifa protestor struck a Republican college student in the head with a bicycle lock, these protests can be very violent.
Antifa seems to prefer its members “wear masks to hide their identities from the police and whomever they are protesting.”
Apparently it’s easier to inflict the sort of brutality and property damage the group is known for if one’s face isn’t visible.
The DOJ’s efforts to collect IP addresses, for all its faults, may provide a measure to remove these masks.