ASHEVILLE – Organizers of a police support rally said Wednesday they have canceled the event over fears it could turn violent. Former Asheville City Councilman Carl Mumpower said he doesn't trust groups planning a counterprotest at the same time Thursday.
"Certainly my intention whenever possible is to challenge with as much enthusiasm as I can to highlight the absurdity of some of these folks," he said. "I haven't said things like, 'Burn this b—h down.'"
The stepfather of Michael Brown made that comment to protesters after a grand jury failed to indict a white police officer who killed Brown, a black 18-year-old.
Area LGBTQ groups said they planned the counterprotest to affirm that black lives matter and to share stories of black transgender and cisgender women who they say are also targeted by police. "Regardless of whether pro-police rallies happen, we are committed to supporting black queer and transgender people who have been and continue to be oppressed by racism and transphobia," said an organizer who goes by the name Lichen LP.
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