CLIO 7 (1) - page 22

- Pseudo-Vigilantism: this ‘false’ vigilante movement
came about in the 1970’s with the increase of contro-
versial cases such as that of ‘Bernhard Goetz’, which
tested the line between self-defense and vigilantism.
It also included the rise in death squad paramilitaries
in third world countries.
- Cyber-Vigilantism: this modern day technological
development is still developing yet currently focuses
on white hat hackers act online.
One of the most memorable examples of a
relatively recent public vigilante response, which
divided the public, was the Cable Street Battle on
the 4th October 1936. Here, the British Union of
Fascists planned a march through the East End with
the intent to terrorize the local Jewish community,
something that was immediately seen to be unpop-
ular through the 100,000 local residents who peti-
tioned against it occurring – acting well within their
legal rights. When the Home Secretary dismissed
their actions and instead sent protection for the
fascists, a disgust at the inadequate legal response
(something characteristic of vigilante motivations)
began to arise and Phil Piratin of the British Com-
munist Party organized opposition forces alongside
Jewish residents. When the day of the march ar-
rived, up to 30,000 anti-fascists were there to build
blockades, using trucks and cars to block the pass-
ing of the 2,500 fascists and 6,500 supporting police
officers. The action escalated and soon the protest-
ers were fighting back with improvised weapons
such as chair legs and people in the surrounding
houses pelted the marchers and police as others
Battle of Cable Street, unknown photographer, 1936
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