White Nationalists returned to Charlottesville, VA last night in a protest led by Richard Spencer. A crowd of dozens, tiki torches in hand, chanted “You will not replace us” as they stood in Emancipation Park where a statue of Robert E. Lee stands, waiting to be removed by the city. The rally occurred around 7:40 p.m. ET last night and reportedly lasted no more than 10 minutes.
Spencer, a prominent white nationalist and one of last night's featured speakers, live streamed nearly 20 minutes of the march and rally on Twitter. In it, dozens of people can be seen marching through downtown Charlottesville toward the statue now covered in a tarp awaiting removal. He later posted a second, shorter video in which he denotes "Charlottesville 3.0" a success. "We came, we triggered, we left," he shared with his followers. According to Deadline, he is one of the people responsible for leading the "Unite the Right" rally back in August. Most concerning, Spencer said that they had every intention of doing it again and that last night was "a model worth repeating."
In a video shared on Twitter by NBC29 reporter Matt Talhelm, a man can be heard stating the purpose of the assembly to be "to represent white America's interests." They accuse the "left wing establishment" of being centered around "anti-white policies and anti-white rhetoric," amongst clear themes of perceived disenfranchisement throughout his speech. Others reported hearing chants of "You will not replace us! Russia is our friend!" Many were dressed in khakis and white shirts, a known white nationalist uniform.
As of right now, the statue in question is set to be removed; however, a Circuit Court judge issued a six-month injunction after a lawsuit was filed in May by the Virginia chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.
In a statement by the Charlottesville police published in local newspaper, The Daily Progress, it was confirmed that no physical violence resulted from the rally and that Spencer and his group left the city directly after the demonstration.
In a seemingly sarcastic tweet directed at Charlotteville Mayor Mike Signer, Richard Spencer said, "It was great to be back" and suggesting that they "catch up next time we're in town."
It has been nearly two months since the violence of a "Unite The Right" rally resulted in the death of Heather Heyer and the injuries of 19 others. While this protest did not end in violence, Mayor Mike Signer made it clear he would not stand for it tweeting, "Another despicable visit by neo-Nazi cowards. You’re not welcome here! Go home! Meantime we’re looking at all our legal options. Stay tuned."