They claimed to be protesting at Nathan Phillips Square on a sizzling Saturday afternoon to “stop the hate” of anti-Islamic groups.
But as it became clear to the unruly, ill-mannered protesters that the target of their anger was not showing up, they turned their hate towards the police and the media, most particularly the Toronto Sun.
The few hundred Antifa-like demonstrators — many wearing red and black bandannas over their faces to hide their identities — had come well-prepared on the first anniversary of the Charlottesville riots to engage in a counter protest against the Calgary-based Worldwide Coalition Against Islam (WCAI) organization.
However, after many politicians — including Mayor John Tory — spoke out against the WCAI plans to stage a rally in front of City Hall, the group decided to postpone the event.
Azeezah Kanji, a Muslim speaker, greeted the crowd with a “wish for peace” and a message of “love for everything.”
“We are showing today what love can accomplish,” she shouted to cheers.
But I guess love and peace was a very selective concept for the Antifa crowd — who sported such non-hateful (said tongue in cheek) signs as “F— YT supremacy” and “Alt-Right Delete” and screamed repeatedly, “No Justice, No Peace, F— the Police” at the phalanx of cops trying to keep order.
Several people with caps labelled “legal observers” stood by ready to document the situation if someone got arrested by the police.
Clearly in search of a fight, at one point many ran towards someone screaming “Fascist!” That person was later proven to have been falsely identified.
After some of the usual suspects recognized me, word got out and I was followed by a man filming the proceedings. He repeatedly shoved a camera in my face and refused to identify himself either to me or Sun photographer Stan Behal.
Another group of leftist lesbians also followed me calling me a disgrace to the LGBT community while others chanted loudly, “Sue-Ann Levy is a racist,” and “Racist Media off our streets,” as well as various other expletives about the Toronto Sun.
Others accused us of giving WCAI a “platform” even though they had not turned up.
At one point, a tall young man broke free from the crowd and lunged at Behal, assaulting him while numerous cops looked on and did nothing.
Behal was quite shaken up but the Antifa types just screamed at us that we were “f—ing harassing” them.
Another freelance photographer Stacy Newman said she was also harassed by a group of protesters while taking pix of the entire rally.
She said they called her a “fascist” too and kept getting closer and closer until they surrounded her, claiming she was not allowed to take pictures.
“It never feels good to have people in your face that way and yelling at you,” she said. “I felt somewhat threatened and that’s not a good feeling.”
So much for a peaceful, loving, anti-hate rally.
Clearly this group of hateful outliers are no different than that against which they do protest.
Source: Toronto Sun