Proud Boys in Charlottesville with Jason Kessler

Alert to Charlottesville local media:

Local white nationalist organizer Jason Kessler has announced on his Facebook that he will be hosting a gathering with the Proud Boys today at 6:00 p.m. The Proud Boys are a militant fraternity-like organization within the alt-right that the SPLC calls a “military arm of the alt-right.” The final phase of their initiation process requires them to beat up whom they consider antifa [antifascism activists, but also used by the alt-right to include all left-wing activists].

A Facebook post about tonight’s gathering states, “[…]you know antifa has become a nuisance and a lot of us kinda like to see them bleed… This meetup we will go out with our brother Jason and bait antifa to come out and join us for some words. If anything useful gets on tape, it will be used for press purposes to then build proud boys further, on Gavin [McInnes’, founder of the Proud Boys] show. This of course is just the beginning. There are also bigger berkeley style events [referring to the recent violence in Berkeley including on April 15] planned for DC on the 25th and another in Charlottesville on August 12th.”

The Proud Boys are known to intentionally initiate violence, including at anti-Sharia rallies across the country last weekend.

Kessler and militant white nationalists are expected to attempt to initiate violence between local racial justice activists and themselves tonight, most likely on the Downtown Mall. We ask all media to be present to expose the violent, hateful tactics of Kessler and the Proud Boys, which target people of color in particular. Local activists and people of faith, who oppose the violence, racism, transphobia, Islamophobia, and all violent, dehumanizing ideologies of the alt-right will also be present on the mall in solidarity with the people of Charlottesville, particularly people of color. Local organizers and activists intend to avoid a violent engagement with Kessler and the Proud Boys. They don’t intend to take the bait. The Proud Boys may be wearing the Proud Boys uniform, a black polo with yellow stripes.

We expect Kessler and his guests to move from their private gathering to the Downtown Mall sometime after 7:00.

For more information, please see the attached flier, which includes links to articles by the SPLC, the NYT, and the Pacific Standard.

Also, see this article from Medium.