***Additional reporting by Ian Williams, Golden Gate Xpress City News Editor***
The canceled press conference by the right-wing group, Patriot Prayer, turned into a victory rally for counter-protestors today after they showed up in droves.
Patriot Prayer was a no-show at its planned press conference at San Francisco’s Alamo Square Park after its organizers canceled the group’s initial “Free Speech” rally at Crissy Field.
Hundreds of counter-protesters showed up near the fenced-off Alamo Park at Steiner and Hayes streets and proclaimed the day a victory rally after none of the right-wing supporters showed up.
“I think it’s really important that we the people of the Bay Area give a clear statement as a huge diverse community that fascism … is our enemy,” said Jeffrey Shurtleff, a counter protester from San Bruno, California.
Officers from the San Francisco Police Department stood guard around the fence barricades as a precautionary measure. A decision made after the violence that unfolded in Charlottesville, Virginia when counter-protesters clashed with white supremacists on Aug. 12, 2017. The Alamo Park victory rally remained peaceful.
Protests held around the city climaxed in a march to San Francisco City Hall where a “No Place For Hate SF” protest took place.
“We had these fascists coming to town to try to provoke us, and we responded with a message of love and inclusion,” said California State Senator Scott Wiener, who attended the march.
Tomorrow’s “No to Marxism in America” protest in Berkeley was canceled by the organizer, Amber Cummings, who said she would protest alone after she was denied a permit.
“To the press and to the people, I am releasing this statement to inform the people that I am asking that no one come to my event ‘No to Marxism in America’…” Cummings said in a statement. “That being said I will be attending the event alone. I stress I DO NOT WANT ANYONE COMING and if they do you will be turned away…”
Yet, it is unclear whether or not protesters will listen to Cummings.
Natalie Gibbens, who attended the “No Place For Hate SF” protest, believes the Berkeley protest will take place and also bring more violence.
“I don’t think it will end well. People come for the sake of creating violence,” Gibbens said. “With Berkeley’s history, it’s just a very iconic place to protest.