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‘Free Speech’ Advocates to Return to Boston Common

Groups that claim they are advocating for free speech will make a return to the Boston Common this weekend to stage a rally similar to one held in August that drew 40,000 people and widespread protests against racism and hate.

According to the Boston Globe, Saturday's rally gathering called "Rally for the Republic", is being organized by a group called Resist Marxism. It's an "umbrella organization" of groups who are committed to defending what they call "extreme hostility towards free speech" in cities such as Boston.

The rally is being co-sponsored by Boston Free Speech, an organization which held the heavily counter-protested rally on the Boston Common in mid-August.


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An estimated 40,000 counterprotesters marched through the city to the historic Common, where many gathered near a bandstand abandoned early by conservatives who had planned to deliver a series of speeches. Police vans later escorted about 50 Boston Free Speech demonstrators out of the area, and angry counter-protesters scuffled with armed officers trying to maintain order.

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.

In total, about 33 arrests were made, mostly for disorderly conduct, but a few charged with assault and battery on police officers.

The Globe reports John Medlar, a spokesman for Resist Marxism, anticipates 2,000 to attend the event. However, he added he is overestimating the turnout.

"We expect a good turnout but the number on the permit was set deliberately high, as the number of 100 which the city set for August was far too low," Medlar told the Globe.

Resist Marxism has denied any association to white supremacist groups. Both the Resist Marxism and Boston Free Speech groups said they expect to be counter-protested by anti-fascist groups again.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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