TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) - The National Socialist Movement, a neo-Nazi group, will be making its way to downtown Toledo April 17 and 18, but a local group is hoping to prevent problems by offering an alternative event at the same time. They talked about it exclusively with WTOL 11.
Ten years ago, the National Socialist Movement (NSM) was in Toledo, sparking riots in the city from counter-protestors. The Community Solidarity Network of Toledo is hoping to prevent a repeat of that by offering a free event for the community, promoting unity.
“We're living in times of racial disunity and it's time for our community to take a stand,” said Julian Mack, from the Community Solidarity Network (CSN).
“We have a responsibility and an obligation to our community to provide an alternative space so people who do not want to engage with the Nazis can come to have their children feel safe to be able to express themselves and express the situation around why black lives matter,” added Katrina Bacome, from CSN.
The event will be held at the Frederick Douglass Community Center, at 1001 Indiana Ave in Toledo. It will feature a cook-off, face painting, and live music.
“If you don't stomp the fire out while it's still an ember, it's going to grow,” said Terri Davis of CSN. “And if we don't do this now, we're not going to have to worry about it 10 years later because they're going to run things, and we cannot let that happen.”
Event organizers say they plan to continue to hold programs like this as a way to help promote unity in the community.
“We come in a spirit of positivity, because we believe that's the best way to get rid of the negative energy here in our community,” said Mack.
The event will run from 1-6 p.m. on April 18.
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