National Socialist Movement hosts rally in Little Rock
LITTLE ROCK (KATV) —
Protesters gathered on the capitol grounds this afternoon. The National Socialist Movement was in town hosting a rally that brought a lot of attention.
They tell us they were in Little Rock to bring attention to a white genocide happening in South Africa. But no matter the message, it brought a lot of counter-protesters against their organization as a whole. There were around 30-40 National Socialist Movement members and over 100 of those opposed. "I felt it was really important for people to come out and stand together with the people that they're opposed to, letting all of the minority people, the Jewish people, everyone to know that there are people that stand with them and to be an ally," said counter-protester Jacob Grummer.
The two groups were separated by a metal barrier and large police presence. The Little Rock Police Department says 164 officers were there including supervisors and Capitol Police. They also had assistance from outside agencies like State Police and Pulaski County Sheriff's Department.
KATV spoke to Jeff Schoep, a commander with the National Socialist Movement. When asked if he thought their message was racist, he replied with, "there's nothing racist about it. When you speak on behalf of white rights and you speak on behalf of white people, it's often called racism or hate. But why is it when the other races do it, it's called being progressive?"
The were no arrests at the rally that spanned around 2 hours - and LRPD says it was relatively well behaved given the topic.
This is the first the the national socialist movement has hosted a rally in little rock. They chose this location because they say there's a lot support here.