McInnes and the Proud Boys deny that the far-right group holds openly racist or anti-Semitic views. In New York City in October 2018, police arrested several “Proud Boys” members who brawled with anti-fascist protesters after a speech by McCain at a Republican club in Manhattan. McInne sued the Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center in February, calling it a hate group. Both he and Proud Girls have described the group as a “free speech” group, not a racist, neo-Nazi or white supremacist organisation, and have denied that they are racist and / or racist. At rallies in California and Oregon, members of the “Proud Boys” repeatedly clashed with counter-demonstrators.
Members appeared at the Unite the Right rally organized by white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va., and at a rally in Portland, Oregon, which was overrun by anti-fascist protesters and members of the far-right National Front. The group was founded in 2016 by a group of British-born, white, male members of the National Front, a neo-Nazi organisation.
The group has since spread to eight countries, including Canada, Australia and the UK. Proud Boys has more than 1,000 members in the UK, Canada and Australia, as well as in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Germany.
Although the group can be described as violent, nationalist, Islamophobic, transphobic, and misogynistic, its members represent a range of ethnic backgrounds, and its leaders have protested vehemently against accusations of racism. Some members are known to use violent tactics, and several have been convicted of violent crimes, according to the Daily Mail.
Although the self-proclaimed “Western chauvinists” of the “Proud Boys” say their group is against bigotry, they tell a different story, “the organization’s website says. Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes even went as far as filing a defamation lawsuit against the Southern Poverty Law Center, calling it a hate group. The SPLC has called them allies with the “Defend America” movement, a group of white nationalists, white supremacists and anti-Semites.
The New York City Police Department arrested two members of the Proud Boys in August after they battled anti-fascist protesters on the streets of Manhattan after being ejected from a downtown Los Angeles bar. Saturday’s march took place the same day, with many members heading to an armed rally in San Francisco.
Western chauvinists who make no apologies for being white and male, and their desire to “make America great again. Innes and the Proud Boys describe themselves as a group but deny being a far-right group with overtly racist or anti-Semitic views. In February, McInne sued the Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center, calling it a hate group. And in New York City in October 2018, police arrested several Proud Girls members who clashed with anti-fascist protesters after a McCain speech at a Republican club in Manhattan.
Right-wing rally in Charlottesville that made international headlines after a rally – one participant drove his car into a crowd of counter-demonstrators, killing one and injuring many more. At rallies in California and Oregon, members of the “Proud Boys” frequently clashed with counter-demonstrators. In August 2017, the group played a notable and complicated role in uniting the right at the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville. The Proud Boys have also regularly partnered with right-wing organizations – led by failed US Senate candidate Joey Gibson, a former member of the alt-right – at explosive protests in Portland, Oregon.
One of the main organizers of Unite the Right was Jason Kessler, a Charlottesville resident who belongs to the Proud Boys. The Proud Boys embedded themselves not with their sponsors in Unite The Right, but as members of their own organisation, the National Policy Institute.
The purpose of Unite the Right was to bring the two factions together, but many of the alt-lite groups shied away from the Proud Boys and other alt-right groups like the National Policy Institute.
Hours after the downtown rally, reporters went to the Proud Boys “Safehouse, where more than 50 of them from around the country were celebrating and preparing to fight the Antifa. The group says it and opposing groups have been embroiled in a fierce civil dispute since early 2017, and that their violent online encounters have led to more men joining them and more people taking part in the Antifa protests. At least four girls have been hospitalized after taking part in violent clashes between the group and anti-fascist protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia.
In a separate incident that night, police said three protesters were arrested for allegedly stealing a backpack from a man. On October 15, NYPD Detective Superintendent Dermot Shea said a brawl broke out between members of the Proud Boys and anti-fascist demonstrators when they were confronted by six people dressed in black and wearing masks. One of them threw a bottle at the “Proud Boy” group, sparking scuffles before uniformed officers intervened, police said.