Politics - News Analysis

Far Right Trump Supporters are Finding Themselves Doxxed and Unemployable, Creating a Nightmare Scenario

Normally we would blast employers who fired people for their political views. Imagine an employer firing a liberal for just being liberal down south (or anywhere, really) and then flip the mirror and think about it. But normally political views don’t come with riots on the Capitol and crazed rants on social media about what one is willing to do to “socialists” and “communists.”

If the issue was nothing more than holding employees accountable for their actions, it would be all be simple, but it’s not. The Washington Post has a report focusing on a masked couple from the Portland area that verbally accosted a journalist, who then uploaded the video on YouTube and Twitter. From there, the couple was doxxed and fired:

Two days later, Dawson lost his job as an ironworker, his employer citing his actions in D.C. His wife, Michelle, uploaded a tearful self-shot video to Twitter announcing his firing, and later that month she was asked to hand in her vest and badge at a Walmart in Battle Ground, Wash., where she worked as an online-order fulfiller. She thinks she was fired over her politics but acknowledges that she had missed a substantial amount of work because of back problems.

But this isn’t an isolated incident that happened to this couple. It is happening all over:

The disclosure online of Dawson’s personal information — a phenomenon known as doxing — is part of a growing effort by left-wing activists to punish members of far-right groups accused of violent behavior by exposing them to their employers, family and friends. The doxing of Dawson highlights the effect the tactic can have — unemployment and personal upheaval followed by a new job that pays much less than his old one — but also the limits of the technique: Dawson is unrepentant for his role in galvanizing a mob to harass Jedeed and continues to espouse far-right views.

If it is happening all over, it could easily become a bigger problem. One is taking a person who is already shown to be violent and volatile, making that person an even bigger danger because they don’t change or moderate their views. The sensible step might just light a match:

“From a practical perspective, I feel like being unemployable is going to push him in a more extreme direction,” Jedeed said. “On the other hand, you shouldn’t be able to act like that and then have nothing happen to you.”

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So there it sits, a classic dilemma. On the one hand, you need to keep people accountable for their behavior. On the other, there are so many that it is very difficult for authorities to track and keep an eye on these people. One can put them on a “No-Fly” list and increase security in areas, but there are far too many soft targets.

This is what happens when one unleashes a virus in a country, an epidemic of extremism. This is also why countries try to nip extremism in the bud. But in this case, Trumpism elevated too fast, mostly over the last two years of his term when Trump himself got more volatile. Too late. It is dangerous for all of us now, including conservatives.

meet the author

Nicole Hickman is a lifelong Democrat and political activist who first cut her teeth as a teenager volunteering for Mike Dukakis’ presidential campaign. She has worked and volunteered for John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, HFA (Hillary For America) and Organizing For Action. She’s passionate about liberal and progressive causes, and considers President Obama her most favorite president ever. She holds her Bachelor’s from Boston College and her Master’s from Columbia University, both in Economics. When not working as a writer, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her three college-aged children.


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