Rumor sparks one-sided protest

Published: Feb. 10, 2018 at 8:03 PM EST
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In response to an apparent rumor on social media, more than 200 people gathered in South Burlington Saturday with a call for unity.

After getting word that a prominent white supremacist group was holding a rally in the area, Jarbari Jones put out a call for action. Members of his organization, the People of Color Caucus, along with scores of other protestors, lined the sidewalk on Williston Road holding signs and making their voices heard.

The event was intended to be a counter-protest but the group who they were there to protest never showed up.

"I understood there were going to be some people here who were extremely racist. I'm just here to stand up against that," said Milton resident Curt Randall. "We don't see the protesters, just the counter."

"Whether it was a real attack or just a scare tactic, either way there are plenty of other people who will stand up and speak out for them if they can't speak out for themselves," said Elizabeth Deutsch of Hinesburg.

Representatives from the Peace and Justice Project and Antifa also took part in the rally.

There was also a police presence. Officers from the South Burlington Police Department told us they were there to insure the safety of the protesters and the people using the shopping center.

"We've all heard about what's gone on around the county at some of these events. Counter-protesters show up, they clash. Today there was one group, they came, let out their message and here we are," said Det. Corporal Ron Bliss.

No citations were issued.