In Charlottesville on Friday night, marchers chanting various white nationalist slogans carried tiki torches, known primarily for their South Pacific ambiance and for their contemporary use of keeping mosquitoes at bay. Following along on Twitter and through eyewitness accounts, the internet watched as these polo-shirted "crusaders" made themselves feel big for an evening, and then the internet did what the internet does: It dragged these motherfuckers through the mud.
Among those expected to attend are Confederate heritage groups, KKK members, militia groups and "alt-right" activists, who generally espouse a mix of racism, white nationalism and populism.
"The president was condemning hatred, bigotry and violence from all sources and all sides", a White House official said.
Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe said, "It is now clear that public safety can not be safeguarded without additional powers, and that the mostly out-of-state protesters have come to Virginia to endanger our citizens and property".
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The city has become ground zero for white nationalist and other protesters, who faced larger counter-rallies in the past.
Police declared the outbreak of violence represented an unlawful assembly and told the crowds to disperse.
Video shows Shieldcar ramming into the back of another auto, causing a pile-up and sending people over the top of the vehicle in front of it. Officials told the Associated Press that the crash was linked to the violent clashes, but didn't specify in what way they were connected.
"Go home. You came here today to hurt people", McAuliffe said.
"Islam teaches self-restraint as the best speech", Nasim Rehmatullah, National Vice President of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA, said in a written statement.
According to the city authorities, the violent clashes between far-right nationalists and counter-protesters have left at least one person dead and over 30 injured so far. President Donald Trump tweeted "There is no place for this kind of violence in America". "No good comes from violence", Mrs Trump said.
Between rally attendees and counter-protesters, authorities were expecting as many as 6,000 people, Charlottesville police said this week.
Right-wing blogger Jason Kessler planned what he called a "pro-white" rally to protest Charlottesville's decision to remove a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee from a city park.
The park was renamed Emancipation Park in June.
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