The Proud Boys Presented Dan Cox With a Gift. Now, He Says He Didn’t Keep It.
When a group of far-right activists disrupted a Trump rally in 2017, the Proud Boys and their “Proud Girls” in the crowd turned on the protesters, throwing anti-fascist activists to the ground, and then setting the crowd on fire. Two weeks before, the Proud Boys and their “Proud Girls” had also attacked leftist counterprotesters at a different Trump rally in which they had been allowed to do their thing, beating them with sticks and pepper spray. But when we called the Proud Boys to ask them about what happened that night — in response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by The Intercept — we were met with silence or indifference. We had not heard back from them since, and we’ve now reached out to ask about it more directly.
In the summer of 2017, two weeks after the Proud Boys, with the help of the Proud Girls, began attacking anti-fascist protesters at a Trump rally, they were the focus of a nationwide manhunt. The FBI arrested hundreds of Proud Boys from dozens of states. They were ultimately charged with several crimes, including conspiracy to commit murder and assault, and the Southern Poverty Law Center warned that the Proud Boys, along with their “Proud Girls,” “were on a terror watch list, along with other far-right extremists.”
The attack was in no way random. The far-right group was planning to go on a rampage, and the Proud Boys and their Proud Girls were prepared to fulfill their violent “endgame,” as one Proud Boy put it, and “show it like the Proud Boys do.”
The Proud Girls took an interest in what was going on, and had gone to the rally to show their support for their anti-fascist comrades. They knew their presence meant trouble. The Proud Boys had set up a private