The Proud Boys, a truly bizarre “western chauvinist” fraternity that was recently named a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, is hosting a Patriots Day rally in Massachusetts headlined by three figures who inhabit the far reaches of right-wing politics.
According to a Facebook event created by the New England chapter of Proud Boys, the April 16 rally will feature alt-right icon Kyle “Based Stickman” Chapman, who was charged with assaulting counter-protesters at a rally in Berkeley last year, right-wing Senate candidate V.A. Shiva Ayyadurai, who has cozied up to alt-right activists, and YouTube pundit Carl “Sargon of Akkad” Benjamin, who calls himself “liberalist” despite offering himself as an ally to the fringes of the far-right.
The rally will be hosted by John Medlar, a “local free speech activist” who also organized a “free speech” rally at Boston Common last year shortly after a woman was murdered at the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. The event page promises “music, rousing speeches, and open-mic free speech.”
Last year’s rally at Boston Common ended early after it was overwhelmed by counter-protesters. Ayyadurai also spoke at that rally.
The Proud Boys and their founder, CRTV host Gavin McInnes, have a well-documented history of spreading hate and vitriol. Former Proud Boy Jason Kessler helped organized the “Unite the Right” rally, which several Proud Boys attended. McInnes has made a career out of peddling transphobic, misogynistic and anti-Muslim rhetoric—ideas that have taken hold with many members of his organization.
The group also has a history of violence at rallies, some of which may be motivated by the fact that the final “degree” of Proud Boys membership requires physically assaulting an anti-fascist “Antifa” protester.
One member has already created an anime-style promotional video for the event: