A protest in Boston against COVID-19 vaccines and masks repeatedly derailed Sunday as the crowd was overrun with counter-protesters.
According to NBC Boston, roughly double the number of counter-protesters showed up at the event at Boston Common compared to protesters. This led to a handful of physical altercations between the two groups, requiring police intervention.
In one of the strangest events of the event, a group of marching bands joined the counter-protesters. As the situation worsened, police officers in riot gear were deployed. The area had already been blocked in anticipation of protests, with hundreds of officers assigned to watch it.
The event was organized by Super Happy Fun America. The conservative group has hosted several controversial events in the past, including a ‘Straight Pride’ parade in 2019 and a ‘Refounding Fathers Festival’ earlier this year. The latter event also drew low turnout compared to the counter-protests surrounding it and was aimed at raising funds for participants in the January 6 Capitol Riot.
News week contacted the Boston Police Department for comment on this story.
Anti-mandate protests in the United States have maintained a level of intensity in recent weeks. On Staten Island last week, a protest took place outside a venue where New York Governor Kathy Hochul was speaking. During the event, an unknown speaker suggested to the crowd that the pursuit of vaccination mandates will lead to more and more violence in the real world.
“If they want to force this on children,” said the speaker, “I can guarantee you one thing: town halls and schools will be in ashes … In 1776 no one went to court, no one went to court. went to court someone grabbed a gun and they shot at each other … I don’t condone violence and hope we don’t get there but just understand that there is a lot of people who are ready to go there. “
In October, a protest against vaccination warrants in New York City turned violent when protesters knocked over a tent housing a mobile COVID-19 testing unit and threw down its chairs and table. The group started outside the New York Department of Education building in Brooklyn, crossed the Brooklyn Bridge, and eventually ended up at the Australian Consulate in Manhattan. Conservatives and those who oppose COVID restrictions have sharply criticized Australia, which has put in place some of the world’s toughest lockdowns to tackle the virus.