(Updated — see below)
A group called Refuse Fascism is taking responsibility for the violence unleashed in Berkeley last Wednesday during a protest over a scheduled speech by conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos. The group defended the violence (without calling it violence, of course) and called for more such action to shut down other conservative speakers.
Building on the original research of Capital Research Center, the Daily Caller reported that Resist Fascism is funded, at least in part, by the left-wing Alliance For Global Justice (AGJ). AGJ has received $50,000 funding from the Tides Foundation and $100,000 from the Open Society Institute, both backed by George Soros.
AGJ has also received money from corporate foundations, including $10,000 from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation, $5,000 from the Bank of America Charitable Gift Fund, $119,000 from the Fidelity Investments Charitable Gift Fund, and $21,100 from the Schwab Charitable Fund.
Now that esteemed companies like Bank of America, Fidelity Investments, and Charles Schwab Corporation know that the money they give to AGJ can be funneled to violent groups like Refuse Fascism, do they condone violence like that which occurred in Berkeley?
Do they approve of mobs that prevent conservative speakers from being heard?
And, if they don’t, will they stop funding AGJ?
Click here to see all recent grants to AGJ. (Source: Foundation Search.)
UPDATE: Adam Banker of Media Relations at Fidelity Charitable emailed me to say that Fidelity Charitable is a national donor-advised fund. According to Mr. Banker, donor-advised funds are “are cause-neutral charitable giving vehicles that enable those who fund their own donor-advised fund accounts to recommend grants from those accounts to IRS-qualified, 501(c)(3) public charities” and grants “recommended by donors do not, in any way, represent an endorsement by Fidelity Charitable or Fidelity Investments.” Fair enough.
But now that Fidelity is aware that AGJ sends funds to a violent group like Refuse Fascism, will it henceforth ask donors that want to send money to AGJ to do so through an organization other than Fidelity Charitable? I await Mr. Banker’s reply.
Finally, Bank of American Charitable Gift Fund and Schwab Charitable Fund are also donor-advised funds, so chances are they do not necessarily endorse the groups that receive money from them. However, the same question I’ve asked Fidelity I put to them as well.