"If you're going to be in town on Saturday, August 11th please stay with trusted friends and don't talk to strangers about your participation in the rally". More than 1,500 counter-protesters plan to gather at various downtown locations, including in the same park. He admitted there were many lessons to be learned from last year's violence in Charlottesville. Charlottesville dedicated part of the street to the 32-year-old who was struck when a auto plowed into a crowd protesting the white nationalist rally. Two officers were killed.
"We know what our responsibility is to protect first amendment events, to protect Washingtonians and to protect our city, and we will do just that", DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said. The Stonewall Jackson monument near the courthouse has been barricaded; mesh fencing has been placed on the Robert E. Lee statue in Emancipation Park.
"I think there is still this mistaken belief that if you ignore these people to some degree, that there won't be as many problems", said Puryear.
Law enforcement and D.C.'s Mayor Muriel Bowser stood shoulder-to-shoulder Thursday touting lessons learned from past year and patrolling other controversial demonstrations.
The NSM, a white supremacy group with headquarters in Detroit, came to Newnan for a rally in April.
On Friday, D.C. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton hosts a "teach-in" on the effects of extremist groups in America, followed by an interfaith vigil to "promote community engagement and feature experts and leaders who have spent their lives effectively responding to hate and bigoted speech".
Washington authorities said they will ramp up the capital city's emergency level with both white nationalists and counter-protesters planning to converge at the same park outside the White House on Sunday.
Also expected are members of Black Lives Matter, Shut It Down D.C. and other groups protesting a variety of topics, including immigration policies.
"Last year, I was afraid of the Nazis". Other volunteers will help move crowds along to avoid unnecessary arrests.
Some of the widely varied counterprotest groups are launching their efforts with interfaith events and speakers at Freedom Plaza, which is along Pennsylvania Avenue on the other side of the White House from the white nationalists' planned march route.
Police are expecting people with the Unite the Right group to travel from the Vienna Metro Station to Foggy Bottom and then head to Lafayette Square. "This year, I'm afraid of the police", Woolfork said.
The company is citing its community values as grounds to cut ties with participants of the rallies, which stemmed from a protest past year to protect Confederate statues - which included neo-Nazi groups - but exploded in violence.