Several arrests made at anti-Shariah rallies

Counter-protesters respond to the

Overall, the "March" gave the impression of a poorly organized event with a confused agenda. Around 100 people got together inside the Capitol rotunda to hear to speeches about how Islamic law is a threat to democracy. Aneelah Afzali, who heads a Seattle-area group that works against discrimination and hate crimes, said she will also be putting up an "ask a Muslim booth" so people can ask questions directly about Islam, and dispel any misconceptions.

In Chicago, a handful of protesters at the corner of Wabash and Wacker spoke out against Sharia law and the way women are treated in certain Muslim-majority nations. I'll update this post when we know more.

"There is no racism here".

Protesters said they were denouncing sharia law and promoting human rights, while anti-protesters showed up to say refugees are welcome and denounce what they call hate.

Masih Fouladi with the Council for American-Islamic Relations told CBS2 Friday that groups like ACT are doing nothing but spreading unfounded fears about Muslims.

"I don't understand why they want this", said one woman, who declined to give her name. We're here for everyone.

"We are deeply concerned about the type of message that these protests send to the American public and to the good people in your city - that it is acceptable to vilify people simply because of their faith", the groups wrote in their letter to 29 mayors.

The department said it was still reviewing how many people were arrested and what charges they might face, but at least some were expected to be booked for investigation of assault. NPR says the group severed ties with Roper and put out a statement that the Arkansas march was canceled. Too much violence here.

Police encourage the public to avoid the intersection if not attending the event.

"Shia Law involves female genital mutilation, wife beating", said Ken Bowers. Wheeler said the rally would exacerbate tensions after two men were stabbed to death in May on a commuter train while protecting two teenage girls from a man casting anti-Muslim slurs.

"I believe we are all one and I do not believe in division, I believe in love, I believe in equality and I do not like the bigotry and I mean...this is ridiculous", Vermilya stated. In Milwaukee, one Muslim community isn't taking to the streets - instead, they're opening their doors.

Police presence was heavy at the protest, but officers only stepped in once when an argument between several protesters and counter protesters grew heated.

In other parts of the country, downtown Seattle saw hundreds marching, banging drums, cymbals and cowbells behind a large sign saying "Seattle stands with our Muslim neighbors".

Meanwhile, others made their way toward Occidental Park in Pioneer Square, where police used pepper spray and made several arrests.

In St. Paul, Minnesota, state troopers arrested about a half-dozen people when scuffles broke out at the close of competing demonstrations at the state Capitol.



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