Members of purported militant alt-right groups like Proud Boys and Patriot Prayer are descending on Portland, Oregon, on Saturday for what is planned to be a massive rally, but counterprotesters are hoping to make the best of the situation. They’ve pledged to donate money to pro-immigration groups for every fascist who shows up.
The reported neofascist groups plan to meet in the City of Roses along the riverfront for a repeat of their rally from last summer. This time, activists are pledging to send donations to a local Latino immigrant rights group for each person who shows up to support the rally, according to HuffPost.
Counterprotesters can choose how much they want to donate, so if someone pledged a dollar for every fascist who shows up for the rally, and 500 people show up, that would mean $500 for local pro-immigration nonprofits.
“Every one of the fascists that shows up is raising money for a cause that they hate,” said a spokesperson for Popular Mobilization.
The group also encouraged people who want to show support against the fascist ralliers to show up and demonstrate.
“We’re getting ready! Grab some friends and come downtown Saturday (8/17)! Let’s show these jerks Portland stands with marginalized people and against Trump + his bigotsquad. Perform, lookie-loo, or just bang a gong! It’s your city,” the group urged local citizens.
This year’s rally, dubbed the “End Domestic Terrorism” event, is expected to be the largest one of its kind in the city since Donald Trump took office. According to The Guardian, organizers expect at least 1,000 people to show up at the event.
A marching band has now arrived on the Far-left side. They are in the middle of the street. @PortlandPolice Will have to decide whether to allow them to continue to block the road. #pdxProtest pic.twitter.com/yQq5gSnyAY
— Dan Tilkin (@DanTilkinKOIN6) August 4, 2018
Portland’s mayor, Ted Wheeler, and the city’s police chief, Danielle Outlaw, have warned attendees that they aren’t welcome in the city.
Last year’s rally turned violent and police were forced to control hundreds of protesters after people were injured in the melee. Officers fired rubber bullets and deployed flash bangs to control the situation as rally attendees and self-described anti-fascists clashed in the streets of the city, according to CBS News. Guns were banned at the event, but multiple weapons were confiscated at police checkpoints throughout the city, indicating that people were prepared for violence.
“Officers have contacted multiple people in possession of items that could be used as weapons (i.e., flag poles, homemade shields, etc.),” local police tweeted. “These items may be confiscated by officers. Do not bring items that could be used as weapons to the demonstrations or counterdemonstrations.”