In the case of the five Cleveland-area bridge bomb plotters, the media has wasted no time in fixating on the self-described “anarchist” philosophy of three of the would-be bombers. This is to be expected, for anarchism has always been about sensation, hyperbole and fear-mongering.
What is clear is that these home-grown terrorists are not anarchists, but misguided idiots.
Various strains of anarchism exist, a few of which advocate for terrorism, or propaganda of the deed, to fight institutional injustices. It was this strain that rendered anarchism a byword for violence.
Douglas Wright, 26, Brandon Baxter, 20, and Anthony Hayne, 35, the self-described anarchists of the group, thought it wise to initially topple bank signs, then graduate to the idea of bombing the Brecksville-Northfield High Level Bridge just south of Cleveland. Thankfully the FBI was able, through a paid informant, to stop these idiots from obtaining explosives.
At any rate, the media should be a bit more responsible in ascribing anarchist status to the plotters. Much can be learned from the anarchist literature and living of figures such as Leo Tolstoy, Emma Goldman, Peter Kropotkin, Ben Reitman (the “Hobo Doctor”) and Mikhail Bakunin, amongst others.