Three people were stabbed—one critically—and 12 arrested during a clash between members of the Ku Klux Klan and counter-demonstrators in Anaheim, California, about 3 miles from Disneyland, on Saturday.
According to the Associated Press, dozens of protestors confronted six Klansmen, dressed in black shirts emblazoned with the Klan cross and Confederate flags, who bore signs stating “White Lives Matter.”
Anaheim police had alerted the community that the demonstration would be taking place, reminding citizens of the KKK’s First Amendment rights. Nevertheless, the confrontation quickly turned violent: One Klansman stabbed a counter-demonstrator with a flagpole bearing an American flag.
Five members of the Ku Klux Klan were arrested for investigation of assault with a deadly weapon, the AP reports, and seven of the counter-demonstrators were arrested on suspicion of assault with force likely to cause great bodily injury.
According to census data, Anaheim is 52 percent Latino and 27 percent white. Mayor Tom Tait described it as “rich ethnically mixed community where people live with natural respect and tolerance.” The KKK was not likely to find much support there, he told the Los Angeles Times: “Their despicable message is not one shared by the people of Anaheim.”
The number of hate groups nationally increased from 784 to 892 last year, according to a recent report from the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the number of active KKK groups increased to 190, after falling in the two years previous.