FAIR LAWN, NJ - A Trump/Pro-Police Rally is planned for Sunday, Nov. 1, according to the organizer.
"I'm committed to bringing peace and unity to all," the organizer, "Robbie," said.
The Rally is scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 1 at 2:30 p.m. along Fair Lawn Avenue in front of the Library and adjacent to Borough Hall, 8-01 Fair Lawn Avenue.
A First Responder Rally on August 3 launched controversy in the borough when a counter protest by Black Lives Matter devolved into both sides shouting at each other. Fair Lawn and Bergen County Police kept the two sides separated. At the August 11 Council meeting, the controversy continued to simmer with a silent sit-in on the borough hall front lawn supporting Black Lives Matter, which occurred while a Council meeting inside borough hall was a forum for protesters and police supporters alike. The controversy continued on September 11 when Mayor Kurt Peluso told police officers they could not wear thin blue line face masks and participate in the 9-11 ceremony. Officers were permitted to take part in the 9-11 ceremony only if they wore generic masks. Peluso said the only flag that should be depicted that day was the American Flag.
During the months that ensued, the Council has taken up a "Public Assemblies" ordinance that will set parameters on rallies, but the ordnance was tabled on Oct. 20 when Deputy Mayor of Community Affairs Gail Rottenstrich said she continued to have questions on how the ordinance would affect free speech. The ordinance is scheduled to be discussed at the next work session, Nov. 10.
Robbie, concerned about safety at the Nov. 1 event, spoke to the Police Chief to discuss the parameters. "I've watched the poor treatment of the police over the last several months and it's so disheartening."
He had recently lost a close friend that was an officer, as well. "A close friend of mine in Saddle Brook, a police officer, recently died. I just feel extremely strong about it."
Robbie said those who tend to be "disrespectful" toward police are not educated about what it's like to be an officer. "There needs to be more training, more funding for police."
"I know what's behind the badge," Robbie said. "When you know that, you tend to change the way you think about them."
Robbie said misunderstood police officers is an especially poignant topic during October, Domestic Violence Awareness month. "When you see people that have gone through that and how police help them, you realize how police officers help people get through that kind of abuse."
Robbie, who called himself a political activist, said the march was to stand for Trump, as well. "There is so much at stake. We need to vote for Trump or this country will never be the same."
The election for president is November 3.