Thousands march in Boston in protest of controversial rally

City leaders reiterated that a zero-tolerance policy on violence and weapons will be strictly enforced during Saturday's events.

Following the violent clash between white nationalists and counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Va. last weekend, many in Boston have asked that the rally not go forward.

Judging by the on-the-ground news coverage, they have barricades set up which are meant to keep the two groups of rally participants and counter protesters separated. Multiple social justice groups from ME will travel to Boston to take part in Saturday's rally, speaking out against hatred and white supremacy. ". we will not be offering our platform to racism or bigotry".

The Boston rally lasted only several minutes, with reports of some participants fleeing under police protection.

On Wednesday, FSU President Richard Lapidus sent an email to the university's student body letting them know that "one of our students may be an organizer" of the rally without mentioning Medlar by name, but also referencing "another student" that recently sent him a letter about the Boston rally.

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"We have made it clear that we will not tolerate incitements to violence or any threatening behavior".

In Boston, activists with Black Lives Matter and other groups carried signs calling for love and peace over hatred and violence.

Boston Free Speech posted a flier on Facebook describing the upcoming rally as a gathering of the "New Free Speech Movement", the News Service previously reported.

Organizers of the rally had invited several far-right speakers who were confined to a small pen that police set up in the historic Boston Common park to keep the two sides separate.

Some 500 police officers had placed barricades, including large white dump trucks, to prevent vehicles from entering the park, the nation's oldest.

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"That only makes us more vigilant", said Boston Police Commissioner William Evans, who was the department's second-in-command during the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.

"Organizers claimed that they were honoring their First Amendment right to assemble and express radical viewpoints".

"They have the right to gather no matter how repugnant their views are", Walsh said. But "free speech rallies" across the country have become synonymous with racists and white supremacy groups. "Because we respect your right to come in and speak", said Walsh.

Silberberg said she is looking forward to the result of a review of how Virginia cities handle permits for demonstrations that was ordered by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe after Charlottesville, where right-wing marchers had a permit.

"I hope anyone who protests and is marching is doing it for the right reason", Evans said, though conceding, "unfortunately, I think there's going to be a few troublemakers here".

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