It took local activists about 30 minutes to plan an impromptu march Saturday night to protest and condemn violence in Charlottesville, Virgina.
Several local civil rights groups reacted to the images they saw broadcast from a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier in the day, Channel 2 Action News reported.
James Alex Fields, 20, allegedly drove a Dodge Challenger into a crowd of people who gathered in protest of the white nationalists.
Heather Heyer, a 32-year-old woman who was crossing the street, was killed and 19 people were injured, the Associated Press confirmed with hospital officials. Altogether 35 people were treated for injuries.
Fields was arrested and charged with second degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding and one count of failing to stop at an accident that resulted in a death, according to police.
Hundreds marched about 1 mile from the Hyatt Regency hotel to the state capitol in Atlanta.
Many of the Atlanta activists were in town for a Netroot Nations event dedicated to energize a legion of new activists ahead of next year’s midterms, derail Trump’s agenda and lay the groundwork to oust him in 2020, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported.
Organizer Nikema Williams said nonviolent demonstrations help communities heal.
“There are people that are hurting and need to be in community,” Williams said. “They need to express what they’re feeling and express their thoughts and their pain.”
Keyette Tisha Barnes is director of policy and legislation at the Georgia Alliance for Social Justice, a nonprofit organization with a mission of “working together to empower and mobilize the people of Georgia towards justice and equity for all,” according to its website.
She said the march Saturday was the perfect example of a peaceful demonstration.
“There’s no pitchforks and fire,” Barnes said. We’re just here to say as Americans, we do not stand for that.”
The people who demonstarted Saturday night said they wanted to peacefully present their message.
“This is all about structural white supremacy and racism and it needs to end today,” Nelini Stamp told Channel 2.
The Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America organization plans to march at 7 p.m. Sunday in Woodruff Park.
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