"CHICAGO — Donald J. Trump abruptly canceled a large rally here on Friday night as scuffles and shouting matches erupted on the arena floor between large groups of his supporters and protesters angered by his campaign.
"Cable news networks broadcast live scenes of chaos inside the arena that showed people on both sides screaming at, punching and shoving each other.
"At one point a protester clambered onstage and stood behind the speaker’s podium ripping up a campaign sign until security pulled him away.
"In an interview two hours before the rally was set to begin, Mr. Trump gave no indication of the cancellation. He said that he was en route to the Chicago event but that he had been told it might be 'rough' in terms of protests.
"Trump supporters, some of whom had waited in the stands here for hours, appeared stunned by what had happened, and some shouted at members of the news media and the vocal group of protesters.
"Mr. Trump said he decided to cancel the event because 'people would have been potentially very badly hurt.'
"'I don’t want to see people hurt,' he said in an interview with Chris Matthews on MSNBC.
"Still, Mr. Trump portrayed the disruption as a sign of a troubled country and a violation of his supporters’ rights.
"'You can’t even have a rally in a major city in this country anymore without violence or potential violence,; he said.
"'Whatever happened to freedom of speech?' he asked. 'Whatever happened to the right to get together and speak in a very peaceful manner?'"
Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/12/us/trump-rally-in-chicago-canceled-after-violent-scuffles.html