Charlottesville is in a state of emergency as violence breaks out between white nationalists and counter-protesters
City and county officials in Charlottesville, Virginia, declared a state of emergency Saturday after violence broke out between white nationalist marchers and anti-racist counter-protesters in a city park. At least two people were injured as belligerents threw punches, paint-filled water balloons, urine, and water bottles; sprays believed to be mace and tear gas were also used by demonstrators.
The "Unite the Right" rally has assembled to protest Charlottesville's removal of statues commemorating Confederate figures like Gen. Robert E. Lee. Police issued an order to disperse before the event's official start time at noon, and an unknown number of protesters have been arrested.
Friday night, a smaller group of marchers assembled with torches on the University of Virginia campus chanting Nazi slogans in what Charlottesville's mayor called "a cowardly parade of hatred, bigotry, racism, and intolerance." View scenes from Saturday's turmoil below. Bonnie Kristian
— Christopher Mathias (@letsgomathias) August 12, 2017
Another group arrives. "Hitler did nothing wrong," yells one member at a Black Lives Matter protestor. pic.twitter.com/smrza8sKr1
— C-VILLE Weekly (@cvillenews_desk) August 12, 2017
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) August 12, 2017
Hundreds of tiki torch-bearing white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus in Charlottesville, Virginia, Friday night in advance of a larger "Unite the Right" demonstration scheduled Saturday. The marchers chanted slogans like "you will not replace us," "Jews will not replace us," and "blood and soil," the latter a phrase used by the Nazi Party.
— John Gushue (@JohnGushue) August 12, 2017
This was the scene as the alt-right marched on the Rotunda at UVA this evening. A chilling scene pic.twitter.com/dgDMGK03Xo
— Katie Couric (@katiecouric) August 12, 2017
Saturday's rally is expected to attract several thousand, plus a heavy contingent of counter-protesters. White nationalists, including members of the Ku Klux Klan, have rallied repeatedly in Charlottesville this year since the city began the process of removing Confederate statues from public land.
"People are scared" there could be violence at Saturday's demonstrations, Brittany Caine-Conley, a member of Charlottesville's Sojourners United Church of Christ, told The Washington Post. "They are becoming more aware of the magnitude of this event and more aware of the violence that is done by the alt-right. And so people are anxious and afraid."
Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer condemned this weekend's gathering as "a cowardly parade of hatred, bigotry, racism, and intolerance march[ing] down the lawns of the architect of our Bill of Rights." "Everyone has a right under the First Amendment to express their opinion peaceably," he added, "so here's mine: Not only as the mayor of Charlottesville, but as a UVA faculty member and alumnus, I am beyond disgusted by this unsanctioned and despicable display of visual intimidation on a college campus." Bonnie Kristian
Snapchat apparently spent all of five seconds thinking about the appropriateness of releasing a "Bob Marley" filter for April 20 — the cannabis "holiday" known as 420 — and now the company is facing backlash with users calling the filter both racist and offensive.
The filter darkens users' faces, adds dreadlocks, and pops a Bob Marley cap onto pictures. Mashable reports that many have called the filter out for being the equivalent of "digital blackfacing," with users claiming the filter is reminiscent of the racist 19th century act of a white person theatrically darkening their face to appear black.
Celebrity users like Kylie Jenner have also been called out for insensitively applying the filter:
Yeahhhh so I'm gonna object to the Bob Marley SnapChat filter (being used here by Kylie Jenner while she says "420") pic.twitter.com/tkOd72iQpv
— Marisa Carroll (@Marisa_Carroll) April 20, 2016
Other users have taken offense to Snapchat's Marley filter being tied to 420:
Bob Marley was a pro-black messenger, voice for the poor & disadvantaged, a prolific political figure and @Snapchat reduced him to a stoner.
— Toni Macaroni (@tonimacncheese) April 20, 2016
Here is some free advice for you, Snapchat: Maybe next time stop and think about something like this for at least 15 seconds. Jeva Lange
Are there any Jamaicans working at Snapchat because if so I'm so sorry
— stacy-marie ishmael (@s_m_i) April 20, 2016