|Alt-rightists (read: White Supremacists) push their way into Emancipation / Lee Park.|
My father lives near Charlottesville, and told me that a friend--a retired Baptist minister--was among the clergy who went down to oppose the rally. At one point, they linked arms formed a line to show their solidarity against hatred, only to have several of the protesters shove into them and knock several of them down. When they asked some nearby policemen to do something, the officers shrugged, and my father's friend said that he could swear one of them was smirking.Verified by this report--with photographs--that although the alt-leftists almost committed the first violence of the day, it was the alt-rightists who shoved the ministers from their line... thus starting the violence. What!? They couldn't just go around the ministers to hold their rally? Instead of going through?
And don't tell me the ministers and the other counter-protestors didn't have a permit. They did, and besides, to counter-protest the White Supermacists, it was superflorous.
Maybe that's the reason the police basically did nothing, and things got violent.
PS the White Supremacists got violent without provocation the night before. One got teargassed by someone acting in self-defense (shown in another vid put up by Vice.com). And below is some raw video footage of the torchlight parade, 38 minutes long (link to YouTube).