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Protesters gather to spread message about Sharia law

With a line of five police officers separating the opposing sides on the boardwalk, a group of several dozen people yelled “No Sharia law” and “USA” at a similarly sized group that yelled back slogans such as “No hate”.ACT for America is the group that organized the almost two dozen rallies against Islamic law that took place across the country.Demonstrations against Islamic law Saturday in cities across the USA drew counter-protests by people who said they stoked unfounded fears and a distorted view of the religion.About 100 people gathered in south Lansing Saturday morning, some to march against Sharia and others to oppose the march.In many cities, the ACT protestors were outnumbered by counter protestors who said the protests were fueling racism and anti-Islamic hatred. “They are here to kill, steal and destroy America”, a protester named Mary told KPIX.A series of marches against Sharia, a strict form of Islamic law, are set to take place in dozens of cities across the United States on Saturday.But high school English teacher and counter-protester Kristy Griffin, 35, said Pulse should not be used as a reason to hate.Earlier in the day, the anti-Sharia group rallied at City Hall Plaza while a much larger group gathered nearby, with the two groups separated by police, he said. “But we respect their right and we have a right to disagree with what they are doing”, said Malik, a former board president of the center.At a park near NY courthouse, counter-protesters sounded air-horns and banged pots and pans in an effort to silence an anti-Shariah rally.”All across this country today, people came out and shut the racists down”, said John Beacham of Answer Chicago.Organizers called the “March Against Sharia” rallies to protest what they say is the threat to USA society posed by the set of traditional Muslim practices, which they say includes oppression of women, honor killings, homophobic violence, female genital mutilation and other abuses.Activists take part in the “March Against Shariah” on June 10, 2017 in New York City.Hundreds of counter-protesters marched through downtown Seattle, banging drums, cymbals and cowbells behind a large sign saying “Seattle stands with our Muslim neighbors”. Eventually, though, a group of about 20 from inside made their way outside and converged with the counter-protesters. Both sides had left the area by 12:30 p.m., with the counter protesters leaving first.At a rally on the steps of the Pennsylvania state capitol in Harrisburg, the atmosphere was tense. Almost dozen men carrying sidearms belonging to the anti-government Oath Keepers were on hand, invited by ACT to provide security.”Shariah law is kind of making its way into countries”, Stephanie Eitel Rosemount, an organizer with ACT for America, said. However, the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups, calls it the largest American anti-Muslim group.”As a white male with privilege, I’m not risking a whole lot as the Muslim community would be risking their life and livelihood as we have seen in Portland”, said Adler. “When that misinformation spreads, it makes life in the United States unsafe for the Muslims who are here”.