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Hundreds of police officers maintain safety at "Free Speech Rally" in Boston

Hundreds of police officers maintain safety at

A Fitchburg State University senior who is one of the organizers of Saturday's Boston Free Speech rally said on Tuesday the event is "going forward" though some speakers have dropped out.

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

"If anything gets out of hand, we will shut it down", Mayor Marty Walsh said.

Last weekend's clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia, where one woman was killed in a auto rampage after bloody street battles, ratcheted up racial tensions already inflamed by white supremacist groups marching more openly in rallies across the United States.

"Smile for your exit interview on Monday", some protesters told rally attendees according to MSNBC, a reference to neo-Nazis and white supremacists who lost their jobs this week or were otherwise shamed after being called out on social media for participating in last weekend's Charlottesville violence.

The permit granted Wednesday for the event on Boston Common comes with severe restrictions, including a ban on backpacks, sticks and anything that could be used as a weapon.

Rallies against white supremacy are planned for Saturday evening in Dallas and Atlanta.

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"We can not continue to ignore racism, ignore white supremacism, ignore neo-Nazis and pretend it's not a problem", she said. Boston Counter-Protest & Resistance Rally, " also planned for Saturday in Boston, had received 11,000 "going" responses from users and another 25,000 "interested". This weekend, Boston officials want to make sure that doesn't happen in their city. "This is a moment where the resistance isn't just sharing a Facebook post, you know talking about Black Lives Matter, but actually showing up", said Shoenberg.

The free speech rally, however, was sparsely attended, with never more than a few dozen people.

"They have the right to gather no matter how repugnant their views are", Walsh said.

The list of speakers for the free speech event has changed multiple times in previous days. Perhaps the free speech marchers will stay within the confines of the area specified in their permit and deliver their message succinctly. They chanted anti-Nazi and anti-fascism slogans, and waved signs that said: "Love your neighbour", "Resist fascism" and "Hate never made US great".

"We denounce the politics of supremacy and violence", the group said on its Facebook page.

"I think as a country you have a right to free speech", said Boston resident Beth Chandler, "but there's a difference to me with hateful speech and free speech".

Boston Free Speech's leadership has said they reject racial hatred as exemplified by white nationalists in Charlottesville last week, the local CBS affiliate said.

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