Donald Trump hits out at "far-left fascism" and "angry mobs"

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"Black folks are not free from the chains of oppression, so we don't get to truly celebrate Independence Day", said Kerrigan Williams, 22, one of the founders of the group, which will host a march and an arts demonstration on Saturday afternoon.

Trump and first lady Melania was greeted by the crowd with chants of 'Four more years!' and cheered enthusiastically as they took the stage in Mount Rushmore National Memorial.

Fireworks displays are typically a high point of the holiday, with crowds of thousands gathering to ooh and aah, but an estimated 80 percent of the events have been cancelled this year. Trump Jr. has reportedly tested negative for the virus. Event organizers were to provide masks to anyone who wanted them and planned to screen attendees for symptoms of COVID-19.

What Trump is saying: Trump said a "left-wing cultural revolution is created to overthrow the American Revolution".

Trump's executive order - which also established a task force for "Building and Rebuilding Monuments to American Heroes" - comes in the wake of a nationwide push to remove statues memorializing Confederate leaders such as Robert E. Lee or problematic figures such as Christopher Columbus. He did not provide further details.

While presidents' July 4 speeches traditionally are uplifting affairs that emphasise patriotism and national unity, Trump's speech angrily lashed out at the protests that have erupted since the death at police hands of George Floyd.

Protesters in one instance unsuccessfully tried to pull down a statue of US President Andrew Jackson outside the White House.

"Angry mobs are trying to tear down statues of our founders, deface our most sacred memorials and unleash a wave of violent crime in our cities".

"This attack on our liberty must be stopped, and it will be stopped", the president added. "Then you will be censored, banished, blacklisted, persecuted, and punished".

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Mr Trump has opposed proposals to rename U.S. military bases that are named after Confederate generals and vowed harsh punishment for people who damage statues.

Friday's event is the latest to be held by President Trump during the coronavirus pandemic, as he attempts to fire up his supporters ahead of November's presidential election. He warned of a far-left agenda that was teaching children in schools to hate their country but said Americans would not succumb to the "web of lies".

The President will arrive in South Dakota on Friday (US time) where there will be a fireworks display at the monument.

At Mount Rushmore Friday night, President Donald Trump and 7,500 spectators kicked off the Fourth of July weekend celebrations with the first fireworks show in a decade at the monument.

Trump has long expressed his fascination with the imposing Mount Rushmore sculpture.

Nor was there any evidence of social distancing in the tightly packed audience assembled for Trump's speech and a fireworks display.

More than 100 protesters, many Native American, lined the road leading from Keystone, South Dakota, to the monument on Friday, holding signs and playing Lakota music in 95-degree heat.

South Dakota, solidly Republican, has not been infected as badly as other states, but cases in Pennington County, where Mount Rushmore is, have more than doubled in the past month.

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