Far-right rally to be met with counter-protest on Boston Common

John Medlar an organizer of Saturday’s “free speech rally” on Boston Common

The Free Speech rally's scheduled speakers included Kyle Chapman, a California activist who was arrested at a Berkeley rally earlier this year that turned violent, and Joe Biggs, formerly of the right-wing conspiracy site Infowars.

The rally was organized in July by a group calling itself Boston Free Speech, which says it is made up of a coalition of "libertarians, progressives, conservatives and independents". Ajewde said, referring to the small free speech rally.

Organisers of the event, billed as a Free Speech rally, have publicly distanced themselves from the neo-Nazis, white supremacists and others who fomented violence in Charlottesville on August 12.

"There have been questions about why we granted a permit for the rally", Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said on Friday.

"I see poor people and people of color being scapegoated", she said.

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He says he can't attend the Boston rally because of what he calls outstanding legal issues stemming from the Charlottesville rally. "We believe in tolerance, unity, and equality, and urge everyone to stay safe and respect our City", the advisory reads.

There were a few early clashes, including a moment when a lone Trump supporter walked through the crowd of counter-protesters carrying a Trump sign and was chased away, but as of early afternoon it appeared the potential violence some had feared had been averted.

"While we maintain that every individual is entitled to their freedom of speech - and defend that basic human right - we will not be offering our platform to racism or bigotry".

Events are planned around the country, in cities including Atlanta, Dallas and New Orleans.

And hours before the rally began, thousands of counterprotesters began marching around the city. "We want to send a clear message that you don't get to come to the city of Boston with your hatred".

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Members of the Black Lives Matter movement later protested on the Common, where a Confederate flag was burned and protesters pounded on the sides of a police vehicle.

The violence in Charlottesville triggered the biggest domestic crisis yet for Trump, who provoked ire across the political spectrum for not immediately condemning white nationalists and for praising "very fine people" on both sides of the fight.

According to CNN, amid a heavy police presence, men, women and children from diverse backgrounds weren't hearing any of that and marched from Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Roxbury to Boston Common.

Joel Moran and his partner Jon Gothing and friend Gary Gonsalves, who all live in the South End, were standing on corner of Massachusetts Avenue at Tremont Street waiting to join the marchers.

The mayor of Boston has said that the city will shut the rallies down if there is a hint of violence and has deployed at least 500 extra police officers in preparation for crowd control.

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