Reclaim Australia rally organiser plans next move
THE organiser of Hervey Bay's Reclaim Australia Rally is already planning the group's next event, with a meeting to be held on Thursday to discuss the next step.
Mandy Chapman said she was thrilled with the rally turn-out on Saturday, estimating about 500 people were at the event at the Torquay foreshore.
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Rally opponents took to Facebook on Monday to question the group's attendance figure of 500, with some suggesting there was no more than half that figure.
But members of Hervey Bay's Reclaim Australia Rally Facebook page defended the figure, with the page's administrator insisting close to 500 had turned up.
"I was very happy with the turn-out," she said.
"We still have some things to iron out; we will prepare better and be more prepared for the next one.
"It's baby steps."
Richard Ball was also at the rally and was a vocal part of the counter-protest group.
"My thoughts on this anti-Islam rally today is that it's probably just a bit uninformed," Mr Ball said.
"A whole lot of people marching there and they think they are marching for Australia but they've been creating their opinions from what they read on Facebook this morning probably rather than actually getting their own world view and looking at the situation," he said.
"I think that when you're living in a place that has less than 1% Muslims, to have a march down a beach pumping your fists in the air, it's just bullying."
On Monday the administrator of the Reclaim Australia Rally - Hervey Bay Facebook page called upon its members to "uphold the integrity of the page" as arguments broke out between rally supporters and opponents.
"No name calling, be respectful and open to conversation," the post read.
"I am proud of our openness and maturity to this point."