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Former Anarchist Reveals Why He Joined And What It Did To Him

Tucker Carlson interviewed a former anarchist on Friday night who detailed why he had initially joined and what his experiences were in the group.

Conor Barnes published an article titled, “Sad Radicals” on Quillette, earlier this week.


“There’s a really strong faith-based component. You become absolutely sure that you are right. And nothing is going to sway you from it. You’ve set your course and you figured it out,” Barnes began.

Carlson responded, “So it didn’t seem from your description like there were a lot of other inputs coming into the cell. It seemed almost totally self-referential. You talk only to people you are in it with. What are the things that you convinced yourself of or were convinced of in the cell?”

“Hmm-mm. Oh, gosh. Everything. You were able to find what was wrong with everything, from school to government, to police, to any interaction people had. You can find what is wrong with it. It’s not a very happy way to live,” Barnes added. “Violence, there is shifty way people talk about it. Direct action and diversity of tactics, which is a subtle way of saying if somebody wants to be violent we’re going to turn our head and be okay with it.”

“How did you get into it?” Carlson asked. (RELATED: Teen Vogue Runs Pro-Anarchism Screed)

July 26th, 2016 Philadelphia, PA: Democratic National Convention – An Anarchist flag waves over a crowd of demonstrators. (Shutterstock/Belltreephotography) | Anarcho-Students Deal With Snitches

Barnes concluded, “I was a pretty unhappy teenager and I’m told that happens a lot to teenagers. I went looking for an explanation. I ended up just reading a lot of radical literature and I found more and more radical literature until I found things that explained happiness wasn’t something you had more control over. Capitalism was keeping you down.”

Ultimately Barnes said that he left the group after getting involved with a “nasty” person — who was also involved in the group — who “shook me out of my head space” and shocked him into realizing it wasn’t what he had thought.

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