MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The city is preparing for rallies and rides this weekend. Multiple pro-Confederate groups have said they plan to come to town.
The group #TakeEmDown901 will not be near the old statue sites though.
Tami Sawyer told FOX13 her group met Thursday to talk about the removal and what the group does now, since the statues have been taken down.
They also discussed the fact that group seeking to put the statues back up are coming to town Saturday.
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The statues are down. But #TakeEmDown901 isn’t disbanding.
"We can't just go 'Oh great, they are down.' Because a lot of people are going to fight to get them back up," said Tami Sawyer, organizer of #TakeEmDown901.
The grassroots group put pressure on the city to remove two Confederate statues from public parks in 2017.
Now the opposition is starting to form a plan of their own. Pro-Confederate groups planning a ride this Saturday.
"If white supremacists want to hang out in Memphis, MPD will take care of that," said Sawyer. "#TakeEmDown901 will officially not be doing anything."
Sawyer told us the group will let the other side have their day.
She said #TakeEmDown901’s goal is to make sure cranes do not lift the statues back up.
"We have attorneys on hand. We have organizers. We've raised money. Now we will discuss how to pull those resources to make sure the statues stay down."
Sawyer said while her organization has an official stance, people within #TakeEmDown901 have their right to counter-protest if they choose.
The City of Memphis is urging people to avoid the statue areas on Saturday.
FOX13 also reached out to MPD about the planned ride along. And they released the following statement:
The Memphis Police Department is aware of the potential rally and has planned accordingly. We are working with our local, state and federal partners. We are prepared to keep the peace as we do with all rallies/demonstrations.
The leadership of the Memphis Police Department respects and welcomes the expression of the First Amendment Rights to all citizens in a law abiding manner. During a demonstration orprotest, MPD's lawful obligation is to provide PUBLIC SAFETY for every citizen. MPD will deny the unlawful destruction, looting and damage to all property. MPD will not allow a disruptions in business, school, government and every day function of life and liberty by unruly protesters or unlawful protest.
We are not anticipating any acts of violence and expect everyone to act in a lawful manner.
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