Torch-wielding group protests Confederate statue removal

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP/NBC News) – A torch-wielding group including a prominent white nationalist has protested against plans to remove a Confederate monument in Virginia.

According to NBC News, the group gathered around the statue of General Robert E. Lee on Saturday night in Charlottesville, chanting “you will not replace us.”

The group gathered around the statue of General Robert E. Lee on Saturday night in Charlottesville, chanting “you will not replace us.”

Among those there was Richard Spencer, who popularized the phrase “alt-right.” Spencer spoke at an earlier Charlottesville rally Saturday and tweeted a picture of himself holding a torch at the night protest.

Mayor Mike Signer called the protest either “profoundly ignorant” or aimed at instilling fear in “minority populations in a way that hearkens back to the days of the KKK.”

The Daily Progress reports that Charlottesville Republican Party Chairman Erich Reimer said the group’s promotion of “intolerance and hatred” is “utterly disgusting and disturbing beyond words.”

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