Members of the New Black Panther Party shouted "Black power!" and cheered in Dallas after armed members of an anti-Muslim group were told to leave by police, who said they feared for the protesters' safety. (Video below)
Half a dozen members of the latter group, which calls itself the Bureau of American Islamic Relations (BAIR), turned up outside a Nation of Islam mosque in Dallas on April 2 to protest Islamic extremism, according to the Daily Mail.
The protesters wore masks and carried semi-automatic assault rifles, but they were outnumbered by hundreds of members of the New Black Panthers, and police told the BAIR protesters to go home, fearing the confrontation could turn violent.
"This is what they fear — the black man," activist Olinka Green told the Dallas Morning News. "This is what America fears."
The New Black Panthers, many of whom were also armed with assault rifles, celebrated when the opposing group left.
"What would you do if you were five little right-wing militiamen coming into a community where well over 500 or 600 are waiting on you?" one member of the Panthers asked a reporter. "They would do what anybody else would do. They were outnumbered, outgunned, and they were going into a hornets' nest."
Responding on its Facebook page, the BAIR group said it was protesting radical Islam.
"We have decided to Protest the Nation of Islam for promoting violence against Americans openly and publicly," the message reads. "This is NOT about color of skin, not a white vs black thing, (not for us anyway). This is about RADICAL ISLAM. They have threatened to continue killing Cops, Random White People and their children to further their agenda of hate and dominance through violence."
No one was injured during the confrontation, and the Dallas Police Department said it was balancing free speech with protection.
“The department is committed to protecting the Constitutional rights of all citizens," the department wrote in a statement, "and will make every effort to keep this protest peaceful.”