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What to expect at this weekend’s San Francisco rally, plus Berkeley rally cancelled

by AirTalk®

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Police stand by as thousands of protesters prepare to march in Boston against a planned 'Free Speech Rally' just one week after the violent 'Unite the Right' rally in Virginia Spencer Platt / Staff

In the wake of Charlottesville, two controversial rallies were to be held in the Bay Area this weekend.

As reported by CNN, a “Freedom Rally” will be held at San Francisco’s Chrissy Field, organized by Patriot Prayer, the Oregon-based conservative group. In Berkeley, a “No to Marxism in America” event, planned for Sunday, at the city’s Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park was just reported to be cancelled. According to the Deputy City Manager, the permit for the rally was incomplete and late.

Both groups organizing these events claim they are not white nationalists, but many left-leaning critics disagree. With the violence that broke out in Charlottesville, law enforcement and city officials are taking precautions to keep protesters and counter-protesters safe. Strategies for this include limited public transportation, blocked off areas and a list of prohibited items at the event sites. Residents have also been encouraged to stay away from the protest sites.

So what else is San Francisco doing to prepare for this weekend? What kind of counter-protest groups are likely to attend? How have the famously liberal cities of San Francisco and Berkeley dealt with protests before? And what’s the latest on the cancelled rally in Berkeley?

Guests: 

Kurtis Alexander, staff writer for the San Francisco Chronicle; he’s been following the story; he tweets @kurtisalexander

Paige St. John, reporter for the Los Angeles Times; she’s been following the story and will be in Berkeley this weekend; she tweets @paigestjohn

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