The Los Angeles Police Department is preparing for the possibility of violence at a planned anti Trump protest in downtown L.A. planned by the group “Refuse Fascism LA”.
“LAPD will be present to facilitate the 1st Amendment rights of those who gather. Physical violence and destroying of property will not be tolerated, a spokesman said in a statement to FOX 11. “We have a large staff assigned to this event and we are prepared for any situation.”
The protest is permitted, and will begin at 1pm near Pershing Square in downtown LA.
Michelle Xai, an organizer of Refuse Fascism LA, says her group will not instigate anything, but will defend themselves against attacks by any counter protesters who may show up.
“Look, who are the violent ones?” she said. “You wanna talk about violence in Charlottesville, who are the people that came with torches, who are the people that came ready to get into fights, we’re not calling for that, we’re calling again for non violence.”
The Los Angeles protest will be one of close to 20 happening across the country on November 4th. Refuse Fascism has branches in many cities. The LA branch has previously marched through downtown in solidarity with Charlottesville, protested at Trump’s Hollywood star, and blocked traffic on the 101 freeway while holding a banner that said “November 4th, it begins.”
Xai addressed internet rumors that the protests will be the beginning of a left wing uprising, or another civil war.
“It’s slander,” she said. “November 4th is a day we’re calling nationally in 20 cities across the country to the beginning of a nonviolent sustained determined resistance to drive out the Trump Pence regime.”
Xai said her group has been receiving death threats via social media.
“They’ve been calling us antifa and saying like bring your guns, and shoot on sight,” she said. “They’ve been posting memes about like antifa license to shoot or whatever, so these people are vicious.”
Refuse Fascism’s objective is to “drive out the Trump/Pence regime for the sake of humanity”, and Xai says, Saturday’s protest is just the beginning of that campaign.
“We’re not gonna stop until millions of people take to the streets day after day, night after night until trump and Pence are driven from power,” she said.