By Tyler Cowen  |  08-19-2017   News
Photo credit: bostonherald.com

The Boston free speech rally has ended early as thousands of counter-protestors made their presence known in the streets. Since Charlottesville, the rally had been billed another “white supremacist” march like the Unite the Right rally was colored, after the fact. No word yet if any arrests have been made. Chants of “Hey hey, ho ho, White Supremacy has got to go” amongst the counter-protestors who were involved in several physical altercations with police. No word yet if any arrests were made in association with the event.

<a href=” https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/08/19/thousands-expected-at-boston-free-speech-rally-and-counter-protest/?utm_term=.b30ce087348e”> <i>Washington Post reports</i></a> that 500 police officers were mustered within the Common, security cameras and barriers to separate rally-goers from the counter-protestors . Thousands of counter-protestors are currently gathered carrying signs reading “Black Lives Matter” and “Hate Has No Home In Boston,” and chanting “We can’t hear you” when members of the previously organized rally began to speak.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">The Free Speech rally in Boston common is not really a free speech rally when ANTIFA comes w baseball bats to shut it down <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/saturdaymorning?src=hash">#saturdaymorning</a> <a href="https://t.co/9z0eha6WxB">pic.twitter.com/9z0eha6WxB</a></p>&mdash; Victorious Annie👅 (@Anncostanza1) <a href="https://twitter.com/Anncostanza1/status/898908733325139968">August 19, 2017</a></blockquote>

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The counter-protestors met at Malcolm X Boulevard, Monica Cannon the counter-protest organizer had this to say: “We’re not standing for it. We’re not standing (for) white supremacy. We’re not going to have it in our city, not in Boston. We want to send a clear message that you don’t get to come to the city of Boston with your hatred.”

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">There&#39;s a group of witches counter-protesting the Boston alt-right rally and I&#39;m ready to become Supreme and lead a KC chapter of this coven <a href="https://t.co/jiJscjoZpc">pic.twitter.com/jiJscjoZpc</a></p>&mdash; Pat (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ (@PatsHoppedUp) <a href="https://twitter.com/PatsHoppedUp/status/898952233127116800">August 19, 2017</a></blockquote>

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In one live stream from Right Side Broadcasting News an African American had to be escorted out while screaming “Trump is not a racist, y’all need to stop listening to CNN,” and “Blacks for Trump” explaining “I’m a black conservative, I don’t give a shit. I should be allowed to speak. This is my right. This is not Nazi Germany. You do not get to shut me down.”

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Absolutely enormous turnout by counter-protesters demonstrating against the right-wing &quot;Free Speech Rally&quot; in Boston <a href="https://t.co/qhD8ZZT7m8">pic.twitter.com/qhD8ZZT7m8</a></p>&mdash; David Mack (@davidmackau) <a href="https://twitter.com/davidmackau/status/898929325101252609">August 19, 2017</a></blockquote>

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A man in with a Donald Trump flag was surrounded by media at one point with crowds of demonstrators chanting “go home!” Boston Mayor Marty Walsh offered a statement, “There have been questions about why we granted a permit for the rally. The courts have made it abundantly clear. They have the right to gather, no matter how repugnant their views are. But they don’t have the right to create unsafe conditions. They have the right to free speech. In return, they have to respect our city.”

Ironic then that it was only the counter-protestors clashing with police, creating the unsafe environment. Also ironic that the event itself was in no way connected to white supremacy or even Confederate monuments.

Organizers of the event in a a Facebook post stated quite clearly, “We will not be offering our platform to racism or bigotry. We denounce the politics of supremacy and violence.”

<iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FBostonFreeSpeech%2Fposts%2F1746561412310722&width=500" width="500" height="262" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true"></iframe>

The Charlottesville tragedy led to an increased number of Confederate, and other monuments, being slated for takedown. As a result rallies have been planned in Hot Springs Arkansas, Dallas Texas and New Orleans Louisiana,

The trend in shouting down unpopular speech has been only growing since events like Milo’s attempted speech in Berkeley (formerly a bastion of free speech). If all free speech advocates are marked “dangerous white supremacists and extremists” the situation is not likely to be assuaged any time soon.

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