At SF Bayview town hall meeting, anger erupts as police show footage of an unarmed man

from December 8, 2017 at 08:59AM

Police have not yet found evidence that the 42-year-old man who an officer shot and killed last Friday after he stole a lottery van was armed, Capt. Valerie Matthews of the SFPD Major Crimes Unit told some 100 community members on Thursday at True Faith Church in the Bayview.

In response, residents at the community meeting questioned the purpose the department’s reforms and called for charges against the officer who fired the single fatal shot at Keita O’Neil.

Most of all, they challenged Police Chief Bill Scott, repeatedly asking the same question in different ways: what are you, as a reformer, going to do about this?

Gwen Woods – whose son, Mario Woods, was shot more than 20 times by five officers in Hunter’s Point in December 2015 – addressed Scott directly after the officers showed footage of the incident.

“What are you going to do?” she asked Scott, yelling at the top of her lungs and fighting tears. “Because the way that baby (O’Neil) and my baby (Woods), Kenneth Harding, Idriss Stelley, Alex Nieto … the way they were done – you’d better question it!”

“Everything is a question mark now,” she screamed. “You should know that. Everything is questionable now!”

Scott, who took over less than a year ago, remained largely silent throughout the meeting, listening and nodding to the residents as they questioned the panel of officers from the SFPD.

The officers offered a description of how the shooting took place.  

Captain Matthews, sitting beside Police Chief Scott and Captain Steven Ford of the Bayview Station, said that on Friday at 10:30 a.m., O’Neil robbed a California Lottery van containing lottery tickets.

Police chased O’Neil in the lottery van, which was “caravaning” with a gold SUV containing an unknown number of suspects in cahoots with O’Neil, Matthews said. After police detained the occupants of the gold SUV, police continued to chase O’Neil until he slowed the van at Fitzgerald Avenue and Griffiths Street.

There, Matthews said, O’Neil got out of the van, ran past the passenger window of a patrol car and was shot through the window by an officer, who has not been identified. The officer was apparently a recent graduate of the Police Academy.

That officer’s body-worn camera captured the incident. It was played twice for community members at the meeting.

The footage shows the officer preparing his gun as the patrol car closes in on the lottery van. O’Neil then runs past the passenger window of the patrol car. The offer fires one shot at O’Neil’s head through the window, and O’Neil falls to the ground.   

The footage was met by shock and anger from community members, who at one point argued among themselves about whether the police should show the footage again.

Body camera footage shows officer shoot Keita O’Neil, who was unarmed.


Scott said the department chose to release the footage because it did not endanger the safety of anyone involved in the investigation, did not jeopardize the successful completion of the investigation, or violate anyone’s privacy.

“I would like to remind everyone that the video evidence is only a portion of the investigation, and we are releasing it for the purposes of transparency,” he said.

Still, many in attendance were angered by what they felt was another unwarranted killing of an unarmed person of color. O’Neil is now among the 20 people killed by the SFPD since 2011. District Attorney George Gascón has closed 11 such cases without filing charges. Nine, including the case of the officer who shot O’Neil, are still open investigations. 

“We’ve been doing the same dance over and over,” said one community member to Scott, who looked on in silence. “What are you going to do about it? It’s got to stop.”

Others, who spoke during the public comment section, said they were friends with O’Neil, who they referred to by his nickname, “Iggy.”

A man named Demetrius Williams said he grew up with O’Neil. “He didn’t make the best choices all the time,” Williams said. “But he was no threat to where’s he got to get murdered.”

“He didn’t have no weapon,” Williams continued. “We’re here because another young brother got murdered – and it wasn’t by us … it was by people who took an oath serve and protect, not harass and arrest.”

The attendees broke into applause.

Jeremy Miller said he also knew O’Neil as a friend. “I remember his smile,” Miller said. “I shook his hand, I hugged his man.”

“I’ve been seeing … chatter about new community policing – and we don’t need none of that mess,” Miller screamed. “We need the police to stop killing our community. And that goes directly on your desk, Chief.”  

Toward the end of the meeting, Bayview Station Capt. Ford told the crowd that, in many ways, he was a product of the Bayview, having not grown up there, but having spent a lot of time in the neighborhood.  

“I want everyone in this room to understand that I look at myself like a resource,” he said.

Ford announced that he would be holding a meeting every Monday at 5 p.m. at Bayview Station “until the community feels comfortable moving forward from this incident.”

Community members pushed back.

“We’ll move forward when we get justice,” one yelled.

“What are you doing about the racists? asked another. “That’s all I want to know.”

“Clean it up!” yelled another.

Overview of police shootings in the Mission District

Read more at: MissionLocal

VIDEO: March honors SF police shooting victim Mario Woods

from December 4, 2017 at 12:39PM

VIDEO: March honors SF police shooting victim Mario Woods

On Dec. 2 2017, friends and family members of Mario Woods gathered in the Bayview with community activists to commemorate the two-year anniversary his killing by San Francisco police. The group of 50 marched to the corner of Third St. and Fitzgerald Ave., where the 26-year-old was shot 21 times by five police officer. Woods’ shooting, caught on cell phone video, was one of a string of officer-involved shootings that forced former Police Chief Greg Suhr to resign in May 2016. District Attorney George Gascón is still investigating his killing. No officer in San Francisco has been charged in any of the police shootings.

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Leaked Milo Yiannopoulos Emails Lead To Firing Of VICE Writer

from October 6, 2017 at 01:33PM
Leaked Milo Yiannopoulos Emails Lead To Firing Of VICE Writer
BuzzFeed delved into a large cache of emails to and from former Breitbart tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos, which hold some strange revelations, including tips from ostensibly liberal journalists. [ more › ]

Read more at: SFist

Attorney General Jeff Sessions Officially Rescinds Workplace Protections For Transgender People

from October 5, 2017 at 01:59PM
Attorney General Jeff Sessions Officially Rescinds Workplace Protections For Transgender People
On Wednesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo reversing the Obama Administration policy of extending Title VII of the Civil Rights Act to trans workers. [ more › ]

Read more at: SFist

SF arts institution celebrates 40 years of making art and community

from September 8, 2017 at 08:42AM

A community hub that began as an empty furniture store will celebrate 40 years of supporting artists this Saturday as the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts throws its 40th Anniversary Gala.

The focus and feel of the center has shifted dramatically through the decades, from its international political roots to its role as a community center for local artists to grow.

The center was founded in 1977 in a definitively political way, its funding the result of a concession by the city granted to neighborhood activists who were incensed at the upcoming construction of the Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall. That investment, activists and artists argued at the time according to Cary Cordova’s book The Heart of the Mission, pandered to the tastes of affluent suburbanites rather than the cultural needs of neighborhoods.

With help from city funding the building at 2868 Mission Street was purchased and turned into a cultural center with strong support for a Nicaraguan revolution right from the start. Cordova reports in her book that Sandinista poet Ernesto Cardenal spoke at an opening ceremony that drew some two thousand people and included a baptism ceremony proclaiming to shield the children from “spirits of greed, capitalism, egoism and Somoza.”

Even its logo proclaimed its rebellious nature – tezcatlipoca, a jaguar that according to Adrian Arias’ 2003 documentary about the center “represented anti-establishment art.”

“It was political times, not just in the U.S. but throughout Latin America, and I think the Mission and the Mission Cultural Center reflected that historical moment,” said Alejandro Murguía, a poet, the center’s first director and more recently a San Francisco State University professor.

By the time Arias made that documentary for the center’s 25th anniversary, the Cultural Center had established itself as a hub for dance, printmaking, and music – serving as a performance space open to many young musicians who later made a name for themselves right alongside established musicians, much as it does today.

In the year leading up to that milestone, the gallery space found itself in need of some serious elbow grease, according to its incoming curator at the time, Patricia Rodriguez.

About a year before the center’s 25-year anniversary, she had been hired on to do some typing work to get her feet under her as she returned to San Francisco. Instead, she was told she would be managing the gallery, and found it not up to snuff.

“I looked around and the walls were painted yellow and there were a lot of drips on the floor,” she recalled, plus a somewhat laissez-faire attitude to exhibiting in which artists who wandered in looking to exhibit were simply told to choose a spot on the wall and hang their work.

While archival footage points to ample participation in classes and workshops, Rodriguez remembered exhibitions attracting a less enthusiastic crowd. At one opening, she estimated some 35 people showed up.

“There was a big table like a kitchen, with hot beans and soup and all these people were lined up to eat and once they ate this hot food, they split. They weren’t there for the art,” she said. “And I said, oh no, there’s something wrong with this picture.”

So Rodriguez got to work. She convinced her employers to patch the holes, clean up the drips, paint the walls white and generally get the gallery to sparkle. She reached out to, then followed up, and followed up again, with artists she knew. The result was a 25th anniversary exhibition that drew several hundreds, she said.

Programs at the center continued to develop and grow, particularly as it began to charge admission for some events, Rodriguez said. The annual mole contest was started, press releases began finding their way to the local newspapers’ fax machines, and young artists came in for access to mentors. Rodriguez would sit down with them for hour-long sessions and help them polish their portfolios and send them to the galleries downtown to see who was making and exhibiting the kind of art they liked.

“Some of them disappeared and I never saw them again, but once in awhile I’d get someone who would come back and say, guess what, I just won an award in Sacramento,” she said.

Rodriguez spent 10 years at the cultural center as its curator, eventually moving on to teach again, but acknowledges the work of her current successor, Angelica A. Rodriguez, and the continuing role of the cultural center as a focal point for the community.

“It is a really vital center for the community in all aspects, from conventions to music to arts to children,” she said. “and then of course they’re part of the Carnaval, which always participate in.”

Carnaval and Día de los Muertos were also elements of the local culture the center was intimately connected with. In Arias’ documentary, Cordova says some of the dancers and artists who launched San Francisco’s carnaval events also participated in work at the center, and collaborations between the cultural center and the neighborhood arts organizations helped plan the first Día de los Muertos processions.

As it prepares for its 40th year, the cultural center has maintained that role as a supporter of the local arts – including local photographer Lou Dematteis.

“As an artist overall I really appreciate the support at the Mission Cultural Center has really extended throughout its whole time of being in existence,” Dematteis said. While he wished the center could find more support to update its various systems and infrastructure, he praised it for being consistently willing to foster talent and help artists grow – including his daughter who, like her father, has exhibited her photography there.

“I think providing the facility to be able to exhibit, that in itself, that’s a growing process for an artist,” he said. “I think every time you have to prepare your work for an exhibit and actually go through it and make prints and put them up on the wall, that’s a very important learning experience.”

From the start and through its modern function, the center has promoted art from a plethora of cultures, looking beyond the Mexican and Chicano art that was flourishing at the time of its founding to works influenced by cultures across Latin America. Now, it is a constant – a stability it didn’t have in its early days.

“Obviously at the beginning it was exactly the opposite, no budget, no staff, day to day operations with no real sense of stability,” Murguía said. “That was the constant struggle in that sense.”

Now it’s an anchor.

“I just think it’s so important that these kinds of anchor arts and cultural organizations and spaces are still here and continuing to function and be vital parts of the community,” Dematteis said.
You can get tickets to the Gala here.

Read more at: MissionLocal

Kyle Chapman, Out On Bail, Ordered To Stay Away From Berkeley Rally

from August 26, 2017 at 12:16PM

based-stickman-chapman.jpg Photo: Youtube via

Kyle “Based Stickman” Chapman was remanded to custody Friday by a judge in the felony case stemming from his appearing to wield a leaded stick at a March 4 alt-right rally in Berkeley. As KQED reports, he was arraigned in an Alameda County court on a charge of felony possession of a billy club and ordered to be held on $135,000 bail. As reported earlier, Chapman has two previous felony convictions on his record, and therefore could face stiffer sentencing if convicted again.

An attorney working on his behalf has previously said that Chapman is “severely mentally ill.”

Chapman has previously said on social media that the charges against him are “trumped up” and “bogus.”

NBC Bay Area reports that Chapman posted bail Friday night and one condition of his bail is that he must remain 300 yards away from any rally that occurs in Berkeley on Sunday.

Chapman, a resident of Daly City, has been hailed as a hero on the alt-right and turned into a meme because of the helmet, mask, stick, and American flag shield he appeared with at the March rally in Berkeley.

Also on Friday, the Daily Californian reported that Chapman had partnered last month with Berkeley rally organizer Amber Gwen Cummings to sell autographed sticks and shields for $50 and $250 respectively.

Chapman can be heard in the video below, posted July 12, discussing the “war against whites in Western society,” referring to the “three battles” in Berkeley, and saying that the only way the country will be saved is if “patriots” are willing to do physical battle in the streets and risk their lives.

Previously: Alt-Right Figure ‘Based Stickman’ Faces Felony Charge, Three Strikes Stemming From Berkeley Rally

Read more at: SFist

Protesters fill the Mission District in a day of peaceful rallies and marches

from August 26, 2017 at 12:21PM

We will be updating throughout the day. If you’ve read the top, jump to the new material below. 

By 2 p.m. today a variety of counter-protests against a right-wing rally called Patriot Prayer arrived in the Mission District. One, a dance party at Dolores Park, drew upwards of 300 people. More than 500 people marched from Alamo Square, where Patriot Prayer organizers had announced they would hold a press conference after canceling their Crissy Field event, to Mission and 24th streets. Meanwhile, a massive counterprotest also gathered at Harvey Milk Plaza and joined another gathering at Civic Center.

“No fear, no registry, stop white supremacy,” the marchers on Mission Street chanted.

(See time stamped updates throughout the day below) 

Around 11:30, revelers began to gather. Photo by Laura Wenus.


12 p.m.

Some 250 to 300 people, some in funny hats and flower crowns, had gathered near the 19th Street palm trees at Dolores Park in one of several events planned to counter the message from those who had planned a Patriot Prayer rally at Crissy Field and then Alamo Square.

The Loved Up event at Dolores Park started at noon with around 100 people and grew over the next hour. Even before it started, a dozen San Francisco police officers were scattered around the perimeter of the park.

Just yesterday, the organizers of the rally that Loved Up was meant to protest canceled their event, settling for a press conference at Alamo Square. Police, however, closed the square.

“I am excited and highly encouraged,” said David Walzer, one of the organizers of Loved Up. “It’s obvious that the original goal of the Patriot Prayer freedom rally was attention and confrontation. The whole strategy is trying to provoke a violent response. It’s obvious that no one really fell for it.”

Walzer said that a key part of defusing the potential for violence was the SFPD’s response and learning from earlier protests that keeping sufficient police presence and keeping opposing groups separated was the key.

“You do that and it defuses everything,” he said. “We’re dancing and they [the Patriot protesters] look like fools.”

If all goes as planned, those gathered in Dolores Park will move on to Harvey Milk Plaza at 1 p.m. Already helicopters could be heard overhead.

12: 15 p.m.

The crowd has grown to 200 and a lot of cake is being handed out.

Michael Dillard and Kim Kirk were wearing their Star Trek T-shirts. Why?

“Think about what Star Trek is – it is a lot of different people all coming together for a common cause.” said Dillard.

“This is the future we want,” said Kirk.

“Contrast that with the other group, that is all about hate,” said Dillard.

“I want to join the dance party with a cake,” said Kim. “It really shows that when people come together in the spirit of non violence and solidarity that we can push back on hateful ideals…it’s also San Francisco – they kind of came to the wrong place.”

Susan Reeves with cakes being passed out (inspired by Tina Fey skit). Photo by Laura Wenus

12:33 p.m.

What do you dance to at a counter protest? Apparently “Love Shack” and “Respect.”

Some tweets from elsewhere in the city:

12:59 p.m.

Angela Noble and Toni Marie both appreciated the cancellation of the Patriot Prayer event.

“I respect them for canceling it,” Marie said. “They’re welcome to don some colors and have a nice time if they like.”

Of the dance party, Marie said, “The media really zeroes in on the negative stuff. It’s the new opium for the masses.”

“It’s showing that different people can get together and organize and have a good time and we don’t have to be haters,” Noble said.

Noble (left) and Marie. Photo by Laura Wenus


1:24 p.m.

The crowd at Dolores Park has grown to close to 300, but not everyone is dancing. Instead, many are sort of bobbing, waiting for the move to Harvey Milk Plaza in the Castro. From the sound of the helicopters over head there are more people there.

Photo by Laura Wenus

Looks like they will be moving at around 1:45 p.m.

Our political representatives, current and former, are at Harvey Milk Plaza.

1:42 p.m.

As the love-in or dance-in waited to move, they watched from afar the two banner tow planes circling the marchers on Market street. One bore a message that appeared to read something like, “hate is a thought so is love.” Another proclaimed, “$130K raised adopt a Nazi not really.”

This is the scene at Harvey Milk Plaza:

1:51 p.m.
There is a crowd of 500 or more  protesters coming south on Valencia street toward 16th Street. Lots of police officers are escorting the crowd. They appear to be turning toward Mission Street.

Protesters on Valencia Street. Photo by Mark Rabine

Protesters at Valencia and 15th Streets. Photo by Mark Rabine


When one marcher appeared ready to start a confrontation, other marchers confronted him and told him to get out. With police nearby watching the scene, he did.

A confrontation quickly ends. Photo by Mark Rabine

2:05 p.m.
The marchers are headed toward 24th Street on Mission Street. All traffic has been blocked off.
“No fear, no registry, stop white supremacy,” the marchers chanted.

2:12 p.m.
Ricardo Zegri, one of the marchers on Mission Street, said the group had come from Alamo Square, which had been closed off. There was no sign of any right wing rally, he said, and after they had a rally of their own, they marched from Steiner to Waller to to Market, and then up Valencia to 16th and over to Mission Street. They plan to go to 24th Street.

“It’s been a huge victory, where so many people came out to say hell no,” said Zegri. “We scared them back into the shadows where they belong.”

Zegri said he’d been moved to join the counterprotest after hearing President Donald Trump respond to Charlottesville.

“Last week when we heard the President of the United States essentially endorse neonazism, I got sick to my stomach and was unable to sleep,” he said. “It seemed irresponsible to do anything but scream at the top of my lungs.”

Ricardo Zegri at the march on Mission Street. Photo by Laura Wenus


Ezequiel Bronstein said to him, much of the political movements recently have been very personal, as a gay jewish immigrant from Latin America.

“It’s important for us to speak up,” he said, then added, “But I present as a white straight male, so I enjoy some privilege. It shouldn’t be like that. So it’s very important for me to stand up.”

2:30 p.m.

Marchers stopped briefly at 22nd and Mission Street, the site of a massive fire in 2015 that was destroyed in a fire, displacing dozens and killing one.  There, neighborhood activist Roberto Hernandez talked to the crowd about displacement.

“A brother died in that building,” Hernandez said. He reminded marchers that Latino families have been displaced from the Mission.

And, then it was onward toward 24th Street. The crowd remained upbeat and peaceful.

2:37 p.m.

The marchers are at the 24th Street BART Plaza and the speeches have begun,

Benjamin Bac Sierra, a vocal advocate for the family of police shooting victim Alex Nieto, encouraged those at the march to make an effort to get to know one another, dance together, even share kisses.

“We defeated white supremacy, we defeated hate,” he told the crowd.


At 24th Street. Photo by Laura Wenus.

Meanwhile the Dolores Park dancers had moved on to Harvey Milk Plaza leaving behind those enjoying just another beautiful day at the park.

Photo by Mark Rabine.

2:50 p.m.
Chanters and poets have taken over the microphones at 24th Street and so between spoken word on oppression there are shouts, “This is the power of the people and we won’t stop.” or “fuck Trump fuck Nazis.”

A group of protesters briefly set up rainbow banners surrounding the protest in the middle of the intersection, but those were quickly moved onto the plaza.

The march concluded with words from Equipto, a local rapper and and activist, Nicolette Portillo, a Los Angeles based poet, and Oakland organizer and activist Gina Madrid.

Bac Sierra advised people to get together and dance after the rally, and to take care heading home.

On possible encounters with violent racists, he added, “If you can, handle that shit, but if you feel like you need to take a step back, take out your phone and video them. Put them on blast.”

The rainbow banners that went up for a bit. Photo by Laura Wenus.

3 p.m.  The speeches are over, the band is playing and the crowd at 24th Street is down to less than 100. One protester has set a Trump piñata on fire. A few feet away, there’s live music and dancing.

Photo by Laura Wenus


Mission street is still blocked from 23rd to 26th Streets.  And while drivers can get through on Bartlett and Capp streets, both are backed up. Advice: If you are parked nearby, wait for a bit. Dance, have a bite…

Or meditate?

Around 3 p.m., Mission Street and 24th. Photo by Laura Wenus

3:19 p.m.  The crowds have left Harvey Milk and at Civic Center, the message is love.

3:36 p.m.

The traffic is flowing again on Mission Street, Capp and Bartlett and the police are leaving the scene.

We will keep an eye on Dolores Park, but otherwise we won’t be updating until something happens.

Julian Mark and Mark Rabine contributed to this report. 

Read more at: MissionLocal

Counter Protests Planned At City Hall And In Castro This Weekend Whether Alt-Right Rally Goes On Or Not

from August 21, 2017 at 03:24PM

sf-city-hall-stock.jpg Photo: Shutterstock

This Friday, city leaders will rally concerned citizens and host an afternoon event on the steps of City Hall to condemn hate and the presumed racist overtones of a planned rally in Crissy Field this Saturday. The rally, which still needs a final permit from the National Park Service, has been the source of extensive hand-wringing and much bluster on social media in the Bay Area, despite denials from its organizer that it will have any neo-Nazi or white supremacist elements like those who showed up in Charlottesville.

The counter-protest and rally will take place at noon on Friday on the steps of City Hall.

Having observed several earlier dustups in Berkeley in which the word “patriot” was put in the title and to which many armed individuals showed up on both the far right and far left ends of the spectrum to do battle, SF Mayor Ed Lee has urged the NPS not to issue a final permit for the rally out of concern for public safety.

Supervisor London Breed tells the Examiner, “Many members of the public have reached out to me and other officials to express their outrage. They have also expressed a strong desire for a peaceful anti-protest.” She added, “As a city, we believed it was important to provide that alternative, on our own day on our own terms, to hopefully change the narrative from violence and racism to love and unity.”

Meanwhile on Saturday, multiple other protest and rally events are planned in different parts of the city in order to give protesters outlets to express their anger and displeasure over the Patriot Prayer event and racist rhetoric in general on the alt-right, all without having to confront any attendees directly in Crissy Field — something that may lead to physical altercations.

SF drag queen Juanita More!, along with multiple local organizations, is hosting a Saturday afternoon event in the Castro called “Come Together,” with the tagline “Celebrate love and say no to hate.” Longtime activist Cleve Jones has already given the event his ringing endorsement, and over 1200 people have expressed interest in attending on Facebook.

“Our city is coming together this weekend to resist hate and bigotry,” Juanita tells SFist. “There are protests, non-profit events, dance parties and marches being planned from one end to the other. All of them to express our collective disgust with white supremacy, facism, and nazism. I am in support of all of the events and stand with the community and will not let the alt-right take us back in time.”

She continues, “In my heart the best place for me to bring my San Francisco family together is at Harvey Milk Plaza where I will be joined by leaders from the Transgender Law Center, SF NAACP, SF LGBT Center, The National Center for Lesbian Rights, National Immigration Law Center , API Wellness Center, The Women’s March, The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, Bay Resistance, Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice and more.”

The Castro event is planned to go from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, and will likely be followed by a march to Civic Center culminating in another planned rally there that will include music performances, comedy, and more.

There is also a candlelight vigil being organized Friday night by the San Francisco Interfaith Council, and the previously announced counter-protest involving a whole lot of dog poop in Crissy Field.

Several other gatherings that are not advocating violence are nonetheless planning to confront the Crissy Field gathering head-on, including this one that will gather on Fort Mason Green, this one involving a call for clowns to mock to the alt-right rally attendees, and this larger one that is advocating for “fighting back,” however a much larger planned event called “Unafraid” that was likely to draw hundreds if not thousands of counter-protesters to Crissy Field has now been canceled and its Facebook link redirects to the peaceful Civic Center rally instead.

You can read my thoughts, if you haven’t already, about why I think giving the Crissy Field event any direct attention is a terrible idea.

Previously: Dog Owners To Dump Poop On Crissy Field Ahead Of Rally; Organizer Tells Fox He’s Not A White Supremacist

Read more at: SFist

Bay Area Rallies, Raises Funds In Protest Of Planned Alt-Right Event

from August 21, 2017 at 11:23AM

A couple of demonstrations over the weekend showed Bay Area folk on the left of the political spectrum coming out in defiance of the recently defiant displays by those on the far-right end of the spectrum. First, on Saturday, a planned counter-protest for a March on Google organized by alt-right figure Jack Posobiec (of Pizzagate fame) went on despite the march itself getting postponed last week. The rally, titled Stand Up for Equality and Diversity, drew a couple of hundred people outside City Hall in Mountain View, as NBC Bay Area reports, and the event, originally meant to counter a right-wing rally in protest of the firing of Google engineer James Damore, took on greater significance for some attendees after the events in Charlottesville the week before.

“I don’t support violence, and I certainly don’t support terrorism and people marching around with tiki torches,” said protester Elizabeth Beheler to NBC Bay Area. “So yes, I think that I am a suburban soccer mom here peacefully expressing myself.”

Protesters chanted things like “What do we want? Equality. When do we want it? Now!” Indybay has some more photos here.

The March on Google was postponed due to what Posobiec claimed were credible threats of violence from the “alt-left,” and it comes just as the Bay Area is bracing for two other planned rallies this coming weekend in SF and Berkeley by the alt-right/conservative group Patriot Prayer — one or both of which, some fear, will attract the type of extremist and neo-Nazi elements who showed up in Charlottesville.

Separately on Saturday the group Showing Up For Racial Justice (SURJ) staged a rally in Justin Herman Plaza in SF in protest of the upcoming rallies and white supremacists in general, with attendees hoisting signs that said “White Supremacy Sucks!” and “Make America HUMAN Again!”, as NBC Bay Area reports.

In related news, a fundraising campaign by a Bay Area lawyers’ group has quickly raised over $80,000 for the Southern Poverty Law Center — the non-profit group based in Alabama that tracks and documents hate groups of all kinds in the US.

The GoFundMe campaign, titled “Adopt a Nazi (Not Really),” was launched last week by Jewish Bar Association of San Francisco board member Cody Harris. He tells NBC Bay Area that the idea was inspired by a 2014 campaign launched in the small German town of Wunsiedel, where they “decided to combat an annual neo-Nazi march through town by donating money to an anti-extremist group for every marcher.”

“These extremist groups are spoiling for a fight,” Harris tells the station. “They are basically trolls — they want a reaction, they want violence in the streets. It serves their purposes. Decent Americans cannot respond like that, tempting as it may be. We instead must channel our anguish and anger towards something positive. This campaign is an easy way to do that.”

Previously: Dog Owners To Dump Poop On Crissy Field Ahead Of Rally; Organizer Tells Fox He’s Not A White Supremacist

Read more at: SFist