KKK and Black Panthers hold rallies at South Carolina Capitol, supporters clash

“The Confederate flag does not represent hate. A lot of Americans died for that flag,” one member of the KKK said, according to CNN affiliate WOLO.

As the day went on, tensions grew between protesters and counter-protesters.

State police placed themselves between opposing sides, but skirmishes still erupted. At one point, a group of people grabbed a Confederate flag and started ripping it apart.

Authorities shut down the rally an hour early to disperse the crowd they estimated at 2,000 people.