A reported 40,000 counter-protesters gathered in downtown Boston on Saturday (August 19) to attempt to drown out a so-called “free speech” rally.
Exactly one week after the tragic terror attack in Charlottesville, Virginia, it was feared that the controversial rally would bring together white supremacist groups and incite more violence. Instead, there were so many there protesting the event’s demonstrators that an hour after the rally started, attendees left the Boston Common pavilion without carrying out any of their planned speeches.
Cheers ensued among the counter-protesters with many yelling “Hey hey, ho ho. White supremacy has got to go.”
The event did end with arrests, however. 27 were made, primarily for disorderly conduct, according to the Washington Post. No one was injured and no property damage occurred.
Tensions did flare though when people were escorted by police out of the march, prompting altercations between police and the counter-protesters. Boston Police Commissioner William Evans says police and protesters kept everything relatively civil and the event was a success.
“Overall everyone did a good job,” Evans said. “99.9 percent of people were here for the right reason, and that’s to fight bigotry.”
Donald Trump weighed in on what happened in Boston and wanted “to applaud” the protesters “speaking out against bigotry and hate.”
Looks like many anti-police agitators in Boston. Police are looking tough and smart! Thank you.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
Our great country has been divided for decades. Sometimes you need protest in order to heal, & we will heal, & be stronger than ever before!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
I want to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
Trump also thanked Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh who joined counter-protesters at the march. He replied to the president though in a pretty slick way, knowing Trump’s previous comments on Charlottesville.
“Today Boston stood for peace and love, not bigotry and hate,” he tweeted. “We should work to bring people together, not apart.”
Check out video of what went down as well as reaction to the Boston protests below.
Boston reminding the world that love always trumps hate! pic.twitter.com/KQVSm5Njyx— Marie Connor (@thistallawkgirl) August 19, 2017
Today Boston stood for peace and love, not bigotry and hate. We should work to bring people together, not apart.— Mayor Marty Walsh (@marty_walsh) August 19, 2017
Boston, don't start patting yourself on the back just yet. There's a LOT of real work this city needs to make to change anyone's opinion...— Dart_Adams (@Dart_Adams) August 19, 2017
Boston Police Commissioner just said that the ones that were causing problems were not the counter protesters. He is against the hate!— Sherri (@Sherri317) August 19, 2017
Thank you Boston Police and Thank you To the Governor of Boston for supporting your officers, and not using Stand Down— Kathy Perry (@kat_0157) August 19, 2017
To the 45,000 courageous Americans who stood up to Nazis today in Boston. We thank you.— Michael Skolnik (@MichaelSkolnik) August 19, 2017
Folks in my email & #onhere grasping to describe Boston protests as "violent." 27 arrests is 10 fewer than the night Sox won the 07 series— Wesley Lowery (@WesleyLowery) August 19, 2017
(Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)