According to the East Bay Times, alt-right protesters and liberal counter-protesters clashed with each other on Sunday during a “No To Marxism in Berkeley” rally in Berkeley, California.
Alt-right demonstrators and counter-protesters alike gathered at Berkeley’s Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park, proceeding to fight and hurl insults at one another. After being forced to intervene in multiple fights, Berkeley police deployed a few smoke grenades in an effort to break up the violence. The local police first arrived at the scene wearing riot gear after getting reports that protesters were throwing fireworks at each other and had several other types of weapons on hand.
The organizer of the rally, Amber Cummings, used a bullhorn to deliver a quick speech, which she ended with “Go to h*ll, you commie scum. You’re going to jail.”
Meanwhile, counter-protesters chanted phrases like, “Charlottesville never again,” beating loud drums and shouting in an effort to drown out the opposing demonstrators.
By the end of the rally, Berkeley Police arrested 10 people for vandalism, intent to commit a crime, and possession of deadly weapons, posting pictures on the department’s Twitter feed of the various weapons they had confiscated.
Prior to the rally, liberal counter-protesters gathered a few blocks away at Ohlone Park. Some of them were wearing red t-shirts that identified them as Democratic Socialists of America.
Luma Nichol, a member of the Freedom Socialist Party, announced, “I am here because we have to have a counter protest to the far-right fascists.”
“It is important we outnumber them,” Nichol said. “Hitler himself said he could have been stopped when he only had small groups of supporters.”
Some of the counter-protestors wore “Black Lives Matter” t-shirts, while others held signs that read, “Always anti-fascist” and “no human being is illegal.”
One woman even walked right up to a group of officers carrying a sign that read, “Cops and Klan go hand in hand,” and proceeded to stare at them before abruptly walking away.
— Thomas Peele (@thomas_peele) August 5, 2018
As counter-protesters marched along through the streets, the police blocked off any streets surrounding the perimeter of the park. Nearby, affiliates of the liberal bookstore Revolution Books set up a display and repeatedly chanted, “America was never great.” However, alt-right demonstrators proceeded to tear down their display shortly afterwards.
Last year, another protest was held in that same general vicinity, which turned violent and bloody very quickly, and seemed to be prompted by the election of Donald Trump.