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Pro-Free Speech Protesters, Police Attacked By Left-Wing Activists At Rally In San Francisco
A flag with the anti-fascist symbol is displayed on a truck during the Annual event to celebrate the anniversary of the liberation of Italy from Nazi-Fascism, Milan, Italy, April 25 2019 (Photo by Mairo Cinquetti/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Mairo Cinquetti/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Left-wing activists attacked a pro-free speech rally in San Francisco over the weekend, injuring multiple protesters and police officers monitoring the event.

A small number of protesters gathered at United Nations Plaza on Saturday afternoon protesting censorship by big tech companies such as Facebook and Twitter. More than 100 left-wing activists showed up at the demonstration in a counter-protest that quickly grew violent, according to The Mercury News.

The San Francisco Police Department provided a summary of the clash:

Within minutes of the rally beginning opposition demonstrators began throwing glass bottles, plastic bottles filled with an unknown liquid, metal cans, and eggs at free speech rally participants and law enforcement personnel. Opposing demonstrators rushed the established barricade line in an attempt to knock it over thereby putting the safety of participants and officers at risk. One free speech rally participant was assaulted during the incident. The rally became so violent in nature it was declared a public safety hazard and was shut down.

Police escorted the free speech protesters off the scene while the left-wing activists continued to attack and harass the demonstrators and the police officers, according to the police department statement.

As officers escorted rally participants from the area, opposition protesters continued to act aggressively. Several rally participants sustained non-life-threatening-injuries. Three San Francisco Police officers sustained non-life-threatening injuries when they were assaulted with pepper spray and caustic chemicals. One officer was transported to a local hospital for treatment. At this time no arrests have been made.

The protest was organized by Philip Anderson, of Mesquite, Texas, who flew to California for the free speech demonstration. Anderson’s organizing and promoting of the event drew the attention of a local Antifa chapter. Antifa is a far-left anarchic organization that uses violence to push its political agenda.

“Today’s the day! The far-right wants to rally in San Francisco but the Bay isn’t having it. We’re all meeting at noon to send them off,” a Twitter account for Antifa members in Berkeley, California, posted on Saturday, calling left-wing activists and Antifa members to the pro-free speech demonstration.

Later, the account celebrated after the demonstration had been shut down and as police were evacuating the protesters.

“This is officially a failure for the far-right. Almost nobody showed up for them. Nobody can hear them. Militant anti-fascism works!!” the account posted, adding, “It’s been shut down y’all!!!!”

Anderson was one of those injured in the violence. Multiple videos surfaced on social media showing a left-wing activist punching Anderson in the mouth and apparently knocking out his front teeth. Anderson later posted a photo of himself online showing one of his front teeth dangling from his mouth and the other missing entirely.

“It doesn’t hurt, but I might need to go to a dentist,” Anderson said, according to NBC.

“The violence needs to end,” he said. “It has nothing to do with Donald Trump or anyone else. It has to do with free speech.”

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