BOSTON - Boston Mayor Michelle Wu has recently denounced a white supremacist march that occurred on Saturday in which 100 members of the radical group Patriot Front gathered just outside City Hall Plaza.
"To the white supremacists who ran through downtown today: When we march, we don't hide our faces. Your hate is as cowardly as it is disgusting, and it goes against all that Boston stands for," Wu wrote on Twitter.
The Patriot Front members had planned a surprise march for Saturday, according to the New York Post.
They flew colonial flags as well as banners from Benito Mussolini’s National Fascist Party. A skirmish quickly erupted between a Black man and multiple white supremacists.
A fight breaks out as the white supremacist group, The Patriot Front marches thru the city of Boston on July 2, 2022 in , BOSTON, MA. (Staff Photo By Stuart Cahill/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)
City Councilor At-Large Ruthzee Louijeune posted a video of the Patriot Front members, calling them cowards.
"Gross. Pretty sure the masks aren’t being worn for public health concerns," Louijeune wrote on Twitter.
Photos and videos showing approximately 100 Patriot Front members gathering in the streets quickly became viral on social media as many compared the members' white balaclavas to KKK hoods.
"Meet the new Klan," wrote actor David Alan Grier on Twitter, posting a photo of the Patriot Front members reportedly marching through Boston on July 2.
City Council President Ed Flynn expressed indignation over the gathering of Patriot Front members.
"I'm outraged and disgusted at the white supremacist group protesting today," added City Council President Ed Flynn in a tweet.
"It is incumbent upon all of us to acknowledge, call out, and disavow the growing extremism and creeping hate in our country wherever we see it," Flynn wrote in a separate press release. "We must always stand with the Jewish community and our communities of color, educate our children about the horrors of the past so that history does not repeat itself, and make clear to all neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups that they are not welcome and will never represent our values."
Who are the Patriot Front?
The Anti-Defamation League describes Patriot Front as a Texas-based "white supremacist group whose members maintain that their ancestors conquered America and bequeathed it to them, and no one else."
Patriot Front is known for its online presence and for holding "flash demonstrations," unannounced rallies in which members march in khakis and blue or white shirts, often wearing masks, according to the ADL. Photos show that the suspects were wearing similar outfits when they were arrested.
Last month, the group of 31 men allegedly in the white supremacist group Patriot Front were arrested for conspiracy to riot at a gay pride event in Idaho.
According to Kootenai County prosecutors, Coeur d'Alene police officers believed that the 31 men, suspected of being part of a nationwide white supremacist group, intended to incite physical confrontation and cause disorder at the North Idaho Pride Alliance’s Pride in the Park event. Court documents obtained by FOX 13 say that the group had been strategizing this altercation for quite some time, with military-style drills and an outline of the operation.
On June 11, a concerned citizen called police saying a group of men, who looked "like a little army," were loading themselves into the cargo area of a U-Haul truck. The caller reported members of the group wearing similar clothing, masks, and even carrying riot shields. According to court documents, the identity of the caller will remain anonymous throughout the investigation, due to the group allegedly being part of Patriot Front, a white nationalist and neo-fascist hate group known for being violent.
Local law enforcement staffed extra personnel that day due to credible intelligence indicating there would be groups coming into town intending to seek out oppositional contact with other crowds gathered in downtown Coeur d'Alene. When the U-Haul carrying the group was stopped by authorities, multiple officers, troopers and SWAT officers responded as a safety concern, since there were more than 20 people in the truck.
FOX 13 Seattle contributed to this story. It was reported from Los Angeles.