Across the US, brutal conflicts exploded this weekend between protesters from opposite ends of the political scale.
After far-right parties were met with counter activists, clashes achieved a boiling point in both Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Stone Mountain, Georgia.
‘Go Home, Racists, Go Home,’ Left-Leaning Groups Chanted at Far-Right Group the Three Percenters in Georgia On Saturday
To preserve and protect our history and Second Amendment rights, the Three Percenters, a far-right local militia group, called for a 2,000-person rally on Saturday at Georgia’s Stone Mountain Park.
In the wake of huge protests over police violence and systemic discrimination following the killing of George Floyd in police custody, the group was criticizing calls to remove United shrines and other souvenirs that have flowed across the nation.
Stone Mountain Park is home to the biggest Confederate monument in the US, admiring Robert E Lee, Thomas Stonewall Jackson, and Thomas Jefferson. The area was also deemed the symbolic scene of where the Ku Klux Klan developed.
Ahead of the incident, amidst fears the march would lead to conflicts between protest groups, the city declared that it would be closing Stone Mountain Park.
Statements from Saturday and a videotape showed the Three Percenters colliding with counter-protest parties. These counter-protesters exemplified several civil rights associations including NAACP.
Dispute Amongst the Protestors Crossed the Limits
By early afternoon, with counter-protesters outnumbering the Three Percenters, it was stated that an anticipated 500 people were assembled near the park. The Associated Press reported, both sides had supporters holding rifles.
For a few hours, the meeting stayed relatively peaceful before it turned violent at around 1 pm. Supporters of the militia group reportedly sprayed insect resistance and other chemical sprays at the counterdemonstrators. Numerous members of both groups were viciously brought to the ground by others.
Police appeared in riot gear and were able to scatter the crowd. According to reports, no one was arrested.
A march arranged by the far-right group, in Kalamazoo, Proud Boys, also turned violent. Clangs started once an elected hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Centre for allegations connecting to members being anti-Muslim, anti-Semitic, and anti-women, the Proud Boys, reached downtown Kalamazoo Saturday morning and were met with counter-protesters, some of whom signified Black Lives Matter and other left-leaning groups.
MLive stated, as violence broke out, the Proud Boys were seen pepper-spraying counter activists. Multiple protesters were seen waving guns while others used street signs as handguns. Trump and Nazi mementos were also seen in the crowd of far-right protesters.
KDPS Assistant Chief Vernon Coakley stated, ‘Once we as law administration spotted or remarked that it was no longer calm, we then began to create a police line and distribute the large crowd from fighting’.
As demonstrators sparred, several people were apprehended, involving MLive’s reporter Samuel Robinson, a black journalist, who was reporting the demonstrations for his newspaper. He was later freed on a $100 bond.
Portland Police Sergeant Kevin Allen confirmed to KOMO News, ‘There were reports of a brawl, pepper spray use, and a paintball gun. No one testified being a victim of a crime’.