Home / US / Free speech rally marred by violence as counterprotesters storm the event, beating pro-Trump protesters

Free speech rally marred by violence as counterprotesters storm the event, beating pro-Trump protesters



A rally called to promote free speech and expose major tech censorship turned into a bad Saturday in San Francisco, when hundreds of alleged antifa counterprotectors showed up and scolded and attacked protesters, leaving one missing a tooth.

Conservative group Team Save America organized the event to protest against Twitter, which supports censorship of free speech. They had planned to gather at United Nations Plaza before moving the protest to Twitter headquarters a few blocks away. But the event quickly turned into a match of screaming and violence as hundreds of counterprotesters stormed the scene.

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The video shows a counter protester punching Philip Anderson, an organizer of the event, causing one of his teeth to fall out.

Anderson posted a photo of the aftermath on social media and said he was attacked by Antifa.

A counter-protester, who refused to give his name, prepares to strike at an organizer of a conservative free speech rally in San Francisco on Saturday, October 17, 2020. About a dozen pro-Trump protesters were greeted by several hundreds of counter-protesters as they tried to rally. (AP Photo / Noah Berger)

A counter-protester, who refused to give his name, prepares to strike at an organizer of a conservative free speech rally in San Francisco on Saturday, October 17, 2020. About a dozen pro-Trump protesters were greeted by several hundreds of counter-protesters as he tried to rally. (AP Photo / Noah Berger)

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“This is what happens when you lose your freedom of speech,” Anderson told boos as the crowd threw objects at him. “This is what happens, America. This is what our country is transforming into.”

The event was canceled before it even really started.

Another protester wearing a Trump 2020 t-shirt was attacked at one point by a counterprotector.

A supporter of President Donald Trump lies on the ground after being attacked by counterprotectors in San Francisco on Saturday, Oct.17, 2020. About a dozen pro-Trump protesters were greeted by several hundred counterprotectors as they tried to rally. (AP Photo / Noah Berger)

A supporter of President Donald Trump lies on the ground after being attacked by counterprotectors in San Francisco on Saturday, Oct.17, 2020. About a dozen pro-Trump protesters were greeted by several hundred counterprotectors as they tried to rally. (AP Photo / Noah Berger)

Doctors transport a supporter of President Donald Trump in an ambulance after he was attacked by counter-protesters in San Francisco on Saturday, October 17, 2020. About a dozen pro-Trump protesters were greeted by several hundred counter-protesters as they searched to do it. rally. (AP Photo / Noah Berger)

Doctors transport a supporter of President Donald Trump in an ambulance after he was attacked by counter-protesters in San Francisco on Saturday, October 17, 2020. About a dozen pro-Trump protesters were greeted by several hundred counter-protesters as they searched to do it. rally. (AP Photo / Noah Berger)

The San Francisco Police Department did not respond to a request for comment Saturday.

Social media companies have recently been criticized for alleged censorship. Last week, for example, Twitter placed a warning on a tweet from the president comparing the coronavirus to the flu, while Facebook removed the post altogether.

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As of Saturday night, Twitter still blocked the New York Post account for tweeting about their reports on Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden.

Facebook, meanwhile, said it is reducing the distribution of the Post’s reports on its platform.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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