The founder of violent, alt-right group, the ‘Proud Boys’ is heading to Australia on a speaking tour, prompting calls to block him from the country.
VICE magazine co-founder and former contributor Gavin McInnes, who in recent years has taken to openly writing and speaking about his chauvinism and anti-semitism, will be heading to Australia within days as part of a tour organised by Penthouse magazine.
Dates for the tour have been announced online with the most expensive tickets clocking in at AUD$1,015.72, but the tour locations remain secret until 24 hours before each show.
Penthouse founder Damien Costas previously organised the Australia tour for controversial conservative speaker Milo Yiannopoulos, who similarly kept venue locations secret as a means of curbing planned protests.
While Yiannopoulos courts controversy largely with the content of his opinions, Mr McInnes frequently uses his platform to advocate the use of extreme violence as a response to left-wing groups and individuals.
Mr McInnes, 48, often aired footage of his group committing these acts of violence on his web show, members often wearing Make America Great Again hats, while praising their efforts and laughing at victims.
A petition titled No Violent Extremism. Gavin McInnes Should Not be Allowed into Australia has more than 26,000 signatures, after an original target of 2500.
Labor has also asked Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton to refuse Mr McInnes access under Section 501 of the Immigration Act, charging that he poses a “significant risk” to the Australian community.
Mr Dutton’s office was approached for comment, but The New Daily’s inquiries were redirected to the Department of Home Affairs.
In a statement the department said it did not comment on individual cases.
“For visitors who may hold controversial views, any risk they may pose will be balanced against Australia’s well-established freedom of speech and freedom of beliefs, amongst other relevant considerations,” the statement said.
In August this year, the department refused to approve the visa application of whistleblower Chelsea Manning ahead of her speaking tour.
Please share this video. People need to understand how dangerous Gavin McInnes and his gang the Proud Boys are.
— Vic Berger IV (@VicBergerIV) October 17, 2018
The British-born Canadian founded the Proud Boys in 2016 as a self-described gang that is encouraged to use violence in order to “preserve Western values”.
They are classified as a hate group by Southern Poverty Law Centre, in Alabama, in the US.
On podcast The Joe Rogan Experience, Mr Mcinnes said the Proud Boys gang utilised a levelling system requiring members to tattoo themselves, abstain from masturbation and fight opponents in order to ascend the ranks.
On his Compound Media web series the Gavin McInnes Show, he told his gang members to “get your fingers around a windpipe”, and declares “I want violence”.
“Beating the s–t out of people? I think it’s our job to do it, and the cops turn a blind eye.” he says, while discussing political opponents.
The group uses symbols and phrases intended to appear innocuous, but that have insidious subtexts, such as a ‘white power’ hand gesture that resembles the sign for ‘OK’.
Since their inception, the Proud Boys has established local chapters in places such as Australia, North America and the UK.
There are more than 3000 members of Australia-based Proud Boys online groups at the time of writing.
Earlier this month in New York, Mr McInnes praised the historic on-air assassination of Japanese socialist Inejiro Asanuma before brandishing a replica sword alongside a large group of Proud Boys members.
Mr McInnes was not arrested over the altercation, despite the illegality of carrying a blade longer than 4 inches (19.16 centimetres) in New York.
Here's Gavin McInnes brandishing a sword in front of NYPD officers:
(after giving a speech at NY Repub Club praising a far-right extremist who stabbed the leader of the Japanese Socialist Party on live television — with a sword) pic.twitter.com/5jGIrKvGYD
— BLOOP! (@susiemcdonnell) October 14, 2018
Mr McInnes was once a leading figure of hipster culture and alternative press in the late ’90s and early 2000s, due to his involvement with VICE magazine.
In more recent years, he has penned articles supporting domestic abuse, espoused disdain for and hatred of the Jewish people on air and repeatedly indulged in white genocide conspiracies online.
Both McInnes and the Proud Boys were banned from social media network Twitter in August of this year for violating the company’s policies prohibiting violent extremist groups.
Twitter has been struggling to quell hate speech and misinformation on its platform, issuing a similar ban to conspiratorial online pundit Alex Jones days later.
Penthouse events was approached for comment, but did not respond before deadline.