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USA far-right group cancels weekend rally in San Francisco
March 21 2018, 10:17 | Van Peters
Crissy Field with Farallones Visitor Center on the right
Group leader Joey Gibson and other organizers will instead hold a press conference at 2 p.m.
On Friday evening, Joey Gibson of Patriot Prayer confirmed that he has relinquished the First Amendment permit for his organization's planned event at Crissy Field on Saturday, August 26.
In the week or so since Tuffington posted the dog-poop event, more than 980 people have saidthey will participate.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., issued a statement describing the rally as "white supremacist" and saying she had "grave concerns about the public safety hazard" it could create.
"Hate is unsafe and we can't sit back and say, well, let them demonstrate it'll go away", he told the cheering crowd.
Gibson said the rhetoric prompted the decision to replace the rally at Crissy Field with the news conference at Alamo Park. Weeks after a deadly confrontation between white nationalists and counter-protestors in Charlottesville, Va., right-wing organizers are hosting a "free speech" event near the Golden Gate Bridge on Saturday, and left-wing organizers have planned more than a dozen events around the city in response.
"I never have from the beginning", San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee said of Patriot Prayer. Such statements give credence to the notion that these rallies are being held to provoke the left, even if Gibson has spoken often about love and peace.
Patriot Prayer says the rally is scheduled in support of free speech and that hate groups aren't welcome. Gibson said in a Facebook video that the event is not a white supremacist rally and that the event will feature diverse speakers of color. Almost every San Francisco police officer will be on duty on Saturday. Elected officials unsuccessfully pressured the National Park Service to deny the group a permit, and the police department is planning to deploy every available officer.
Tuffington said, 'I just had this image of alt-right people stomping around in the poop.
"I do believe there are provocateurs in those groups that are intentionally wanting to incite some level of violence", he said.
Hordes of local dog owners plan on bringing their pups to poop there ahead of a rally organized by the right-wing protest group Patriot Prayer, whose past demonstrations have turned violent.
Dogs such as these won't be able to get near the site of Saturday's scheduled Patriot Prayer rally at Crissy Field in San Francisco.
As for Saturday's rally, Tuffington said, "I'm probably going to stay away".
"It sounds like they're provocateurs and they're trying to instigate some sort of conflict", he said. "Berkeley is a better situation because we don't feel like we're walking into a trap", he said. The announcement of the cancellations came just hours after a "unite against hate" rally in San Francisco's Civic Center Plaza.
Despite the assurances, locals have planned more than a dozen counterprotests over the weekend, including one exclusively for clowns and one for "kayakers, boaters, sailors, surfers, and bay swimmers" protesting via the bay itself.