BOSTON — A small group holding what it called a pro-police rally near the Massachusetts Statehouse on Saturday was met by several hundred counterprotesters holding signs with messages such as “Black Lives Matter” and “I can’t breathe.”

The “Restore Sanity” rally, which was billed as an effort to support law enforcement, was organized by Super Happy Fun America, a group with far-right ties that was behind last year’s “straight pride” parade in Boston, which drew outrage from the gay community.

The organizers of Saturday’s counterprotest, Solidarity Against Hate-Boston, called on residents to show up and oppose the rally, which they viewed as opposed to the Black Lives Matter movement seeking an end to the killing of unarmed Black Americans by police.

“Once again, we as a city must come together to drown out their hate,” Solidarity Against Hate-Boston said on Facebook.

There was a heavy police presence as the larger group of counterprotesters shouted at the pro-police group, which included some people holding signs supporting President Donald Trump. The two groups were on opposite sides of the street, separated by barriers.

The dueling demonstrations were among several events held across Boston in response to the racial reckoning over the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

At Copley Square, hundreds gathered at an event organized by a group of Black mothers to stand up against racism while other activists held a rolling bike ride through the city’s Roxbury and Dorchester neighborhoods, The Boston Globe reported.

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