Fired from his job and suffering from severe emotional and psychological trauma, a brilliant engineer-mathematician has committed suicide after harassment, intimidation, and threats by the neo-Bolshevik antifa activists.
By John Friend
A young, educated, and successful 34-year-old man who participated in the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Va. last summer committed suicide after being harassed, intimidated, and threatened by members of the radical leftist antifa (neo-Bolshevik) group for his participation in the controversial and violent rally that garnered international attention.
According to his obituary, Andrew Dodson, originally from Greenville, S.C., took his own life at his home on March 9. Dodson graduated from Clemson University in 2007 with degrees in electrical engineering and mathematics, and began working for DuPont in Louisiana shortly thereafter. He soon decided to continue his education, and enrolled at the University of Arkansas to pursue a masters in electrical engineering, which he never actually completed. Dodson eventually moved to Boston to work for a number of companies specializing in advanced nuclear reactor design. He began working for Elysium Industries Ltd. and was associated with over two-thirds of the provisional patents developed by the company in just 18 months. He later worked for Zora Energy Renewables Ltd. and played a major role in the direction of the company, as he was critical to developing virtually all of the company’s intellectual property.
Following the Unite the Right rally and the publicity his presence and participation generated, he quickly became a target of antifa activists and mainstream journalists, who exposed his identity and harassed him online. He was fired from his job and suffered from severe emotional and psychological trauma.
Photos emerged of Dodson wearing an “Arkansas Engineering” t-shirt at the rally. Multiple individuals associated with the university, including a professor, were misidentified as Dodson after the photo was shared on social media and in local newspapers, and many of them were harassed online. Dodson ultimately took credit as the man in the photo and spoke with local media outlets in Arkansas to set the record straight.
“There’s a couple of guys in Fayetteville that have been misidentified as me. It’s not those guys, it’s not them; it’s me,” Dodson explained to the Arkansas Times. “I’m so sorry, I would never want to hurt you and your family. If they want my t-shirt back, I’ll send it to them.”
Although Dodson did not graduate from the University of Arkansas, he appeared to have enjoyed his time spent there and “learned so much” from fellow engineering students and faculty at the university.
“It breaks my heart that they’re going to think I’m a Nazi, or a KKK, or a white supremacist,” Dodson told the Arkansas Times. “I did not put on that University of Arkansas shirt in order to represent them. It’s really like one of my favorite shirts and I was wearing it when I got on the plane. I just didn’t put two and two together. It was dumb.”
Dodson had prior experience with political activism and campaigned for Ron Paul in 2008. He later participated in both the Occupy Wall Street movement and the Tea Party, and ultimately decided to go to Charlottesville to attend the Unite the Right rally because he wanted to “see who these alt-right people were,” despite the hostile media coverage of the burgeoning political movement.
Dodson encountered the right-wing activist group Identity Evropa during a torch-lit rally on the evening of Aug. 11, the day before the actual Unite the Right rally. Identity Evropa, Dodson discovered, was an “identitarian group” that denounced white supremacy and neo-Nazism, which Dodson appreciated. He explained to local media outlets at the time that he did not “see any Nazi flags, just a bunch of guys in khakis and polos,” referring to the Identity Evropa activists. He thought the rally and many of the individuals participating in it were legitimate activists rather than white supremacists and neo-Nazis. He did eventually encounter members of the KKK and neo-Nazi groups at the rally, but he told reporters he thought that they were bused in along with the more radical counter-protesters, who initiated the violence during the rally.
“I wonder if the same people that bused in the Black Lives Matter [protesters] and the [anti-fascists] and the communists—are the same people busing them in and . . . busing in the Nazis and the KKK,” Dodson asked the Arkansas Times.
He explained that the main problem with the rally was that there were provocateurs and radicals “trying to instigate racial violence—people on both sides—as an excuse to stop us from having our free speech,” which is ultimately what happened at the rally. “I want to talk about the money that is corrupting our systems. I am not going to say that there wasn’t racism there. There was. And I also think it was on both sides. God bless Trump. He’s telling the truth. I condemn racism on both sides.”
“Contrary to ‘official’ reports, Andrew Dodson was a real victim of the events in Charlottesville,” Dr. Jim Fetzer, a retired professor and prolific researcher and author who has written extensively about the Unite the Right rally, explained to this reporter in a recent interview. “He was a sincere participant who was profoundly troubled by ongoing attacks upon him for participating in [what he took to be] a just and peaceful protest.”
John Friend is a writer based in California.