A potentially violent battle between opposite sides of free speech prompted organizers to cancel this coming Saturday’s 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade, one of the early events in this year’s Rose Festival.
The 11th annual parade was set to begin at 9:30 a.m. Saturday and was billed online as a “multicultural event, complete with bands, community members, government officials, schools, classic cars and representatives of the Portland Rose Festival.”
But organizers canceled the parade after Direct Action Alliance created a Facebook event called “Defend Portland from Fascists at the Avenue of Roses Parade.” The group wanted to disrupt the march because of “Nazis and fascists” participating.
“The fascists know that we’ll keep shutting their marches down,” the Facebook event states. “They are now planning to march within other parades to protect their message of hate and white supremacy — it won’t work.”
Direct Action Alliance was referring to group #67, which they said is “registered to the Multnomah County Republicans.” They described the group as white supremacists responsible for “attacking a woman at PDX,” among other incidents.
Someone also allegedly emailed parade organizers, warning that 200 or more people would “rush into the parade into the middle and drag and push those people out,” unless they revoked the Multnomah County Republican Party’s registration.