A leftist agitator with a long and troubled history has been sentenced to nearly four years in prison for threatening to hurt or kill Donald Trump supporters early this year.
Daniel Alan Baker, 34, was convicted in spring of using the internet to threaten pro-Trump protesters ahead of a rally at the Florida state Capitol in Tallahassee in January.
“Baker has made multiple violent threats to those he claims are white supremacists, fascists, United States persons with different ideologies than his and allies of the United States,” the criminal complaint against him noted. “In addition, Baker has promoted the killing of United States military officers.”
Baker, an Army veteran who later fought alongside communist militants in Syria, has reportedly been a head of the anarchist and antifa movements, and last year was drawn to Seattle’s so-called Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone or “CHAZ,” sometimes called the Capitol Hill Organized Protest or “CHOP.”
That was the chaotic scene in which police were essentially evicted from several blocks of the city as anarchists seized control of the area.
Baker, interviewed as part of an online project documenting the CHAZ, said he had come to be part of “the revolution.”
But he seemed to lament that it wasn’t violent enough.
“I told them, if they really wanted a revolution, we needed to get AK’s and start making bombs,” he told the website. “No one listed to me.”
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Then he resurfaced in January, when he tried to rally leftists against pro-Trump demonstrators who had planned to gather in Tallahassee before Inauguration Day, ultimately leading to his arrest, conviction and sentencing.
Baker accused the government of being out to get him.
“The American government has chosen to side with white supremacists, except when their own bureaucracy forces them to prosecute the most blatant offenders, albeit gently,” he told The Intercept from prison via email. “They criticized me for supporting Black Lives Matter, Feminist Liberation ideologies, Global Revolutionary movements and direct democracy. … The government has made its stance clear throughout my hearings.”
But his treatment – and his sentence – aren’t about his support for Black Lives Matter or any other ideology.
They’re for his violent threats against Americans practicing their First Amendment rights.
“Baker issued a call to arms for like-minded individuals to violently confront protesters gathered at the Florida Capitol,” federal prosecutors said after he was arrested earlier this year. “He specifically called for others to join him in encircling any protesters and confining them at the Capitol complex using firearms.”
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That was not a figurative call to arms, either.
According to the Tallahassee Democrat, Baker released a video in January showing him distributing fliers with “CALL TO ARMS” right in the title.
“We will protect Capitol RESIDENTS and CIVILIANS from armed racist mobs with EVERY CALIBER AVAILABLE,” the flier said, the newspaper reported. “This is an armed coup and can only be stopped by an armed community. If you’re afraid to die fighting the enemy, stay in bed and live.”
Fox News reports he was at one point temporarily banned from Facebook. Once he was back online, he posted: “Death to amerikka of course, f–k the president, current and elect.”
And before last year’s election, he wrote that he hoped to get into a fight with people on the right.
The Tallahassee Democrat said he posted on social media in October: “God I hope the right tries a coup Nov 3rd cuz I’m so f—— down to slay enemies again.”
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Baker will also have to serve three years of federal supervision after his release from prison.
— Walter W. Murray is a reporter for The Horn News. He is an outspoken conservative and a survival expert.