Portland Police Aligned With Fascists In Recent Protest Melee


Lesson 17. Watch out for the paramilitaries. When the men with guns who have always claimed to be against the system start wearing uniforms and marching around with torches and pictures of a Leader, the end is nigh. When the pro-Leader paramilitary and the official police and military intermingle, the game is over.

— Timothy Snyder, On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons From The Twentieth Century’


ACLU Of Oregon Comment On The Portland Police Bureau’s Response To Protests

ACLU of Oregon (8/5/18)

PORTLAND, Ore. — After the violence against protesters and observers yesterday [8/4] in Portland, David Rogers, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon, had the following comment:

“The Portland Police Bureau’s response to protest is completely unacceptable in a free society. The repeated use of excessive force, and the targeting of demonstrators based on political beliefs are a danger to the First Amendment rights of all people. We call on the Portland Police Bureau, Mayor Wheeler, and Chief Outlaw to immediately end the use of weapons, munitions, and explosives against protesters.”

For more information about the effects of so-called “less lethal” weapons and munitions, please see the ACLU’s report, “Lethal in Disguise: The Health Consequences of Crowd-Control Weapons.

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(Commoner Call cartoon by Mark L. Taylor, 2018. Open source and free for non-derivative use with link to www.thecommonercall.org )


Video Shows Portland Police Lied About Their Attack On Peaceful Anti-Fascist Protesters

In the video, nothing appears to be thrown at the officers until after they fire on counter-protestors.

By Martin Cizmar
The Raw Story (8/87/18)

Newly posted video appears to show the lead-up to a violent confrontation between police in Portland, Oregon and protestors which sent at least three people to the hospital, at least one with a gaping head wound.

The violence occurred at a march organized by far-right group Patriot Prayer, which drew a broad swath of right-wing extremists to the riverfront in the whitest major city in America. There, they were confronted by leftist counter-protesters, including Antifa.

Several leftist counter-protestors were injured during the protests, all apparently by the police who were assembled to protect the heavily outnumbered right-wing provocateurs.

In the immediate aftermath, Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw and Mayor Ted Wheeler had saluted their officers for “providing a safe environment for all individuals to exercise their First Amendments rights in a peaceful manner.”

“Unfortunately, today, some people chose to commit illegal acts of violence, which required members of the Police Bureau to take action in order to keep all participants and non-participants safe,” the police said. “This was a dangerous situation for all those involved, including officers, and I am disheartened that this kind of illegal behavior occurred in our beautiful city.”

However, the video by Portland-based freelance photojournalist Daniel V. appears to show a very different situation. …

Attention Activists!

The apparent police misconduct during last weekend’s Portland anti-fascist protests is a reminder that it is important to have active video recording of all protest activities to monitor the behavior of the police, protesters and potentially disruptive fascist counter protesters. You have rights regarding the recording of public events. Check the Commoner Call website home page for important information and guidelines from the American Civil Liberties Union. Scroll down right column of home page.



Portland Woman Protesting Rightwing Rally Burned By Police Grenade

[Editor’s Note: In yet another example of how irony is dead in America and satire has now become reality, check out the last name of the Portland police chief. — Mark L. Taylor]

By Jason Wilson
The Guardian (8/6/18)

A woman who protested against a rightwing group rallying in Portland, Oregon, has been left with severe injuries to her arm and chest after being hit by a police “flash-bang” round.

Michelle Fawcett, 52, said she was about half a block from the front of the counter-protester gathering, as they opposed rightwing group Patriot Prayer’s rally, at about 2pm on Saturday when she was hit.

“I heard the most earth-shattering explosion,” she told the Guardian. “I felt struck in the chest, then the arm, and then a really intense and searing pain.”

“Police are supposed to protect people from violence. When it’s the police who assault you, where do you go?”

When Fawcett, a documentary film-producer, later saw a doctor, she was told she had severe soft tissue injuries and third-degree chemical burns on her arm and chest. Fawcett shared with the Guardian photographs of her injuries and her doctor’s report that describes chemical burns.

The police tactics at Patriot Prayer’s latest rally, which again brought disorder and violence to the city’s downtown area, have been questioned after officers charged counter-protesters with batons drawn, used dozens of flash-bang stun grenades and rounds containing pepper spray.

Fawcett said she believes she was hit by the first of the stun grenades to be fired and said she did not hear any warnings.

Portland police chief Danielle Outlaw has announced an inquiry by the Office of Independent Police Review into the police’s use of less-than-lethal weapons. In a statement, Outlaw said the inquiry would “determine if force was used and if so, was within our policy and training guidelines”. …

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Cliques & Secret Tattoos: LA Sheriff ‘gangs’ Raise Concerns Of Continued Injustice

By Andrew Gumbel
The Guardian (8/6/18)

John Sweeney knew from his four decades as a civil rights lawyer that something about the police shooting of Donta Taylor was off.

Taylor, a 31-year-old African American, had been walking from a friend’s house in Compton to a nearby grocery store one summer night when members of the county sheriff’s department challenged him, gave chase and ended up firing more than a dozen shots at him along a lonely concrete pathway alongside a canal.

To Sweeney, who had cut his teeth as an associate of the legendary civil rights lawyer Johnnie Cochran, the 2016 killing smacked of an execution, the work of renegade police officers reveling in violence for the sake of it. It was no more than a hunch, at first. …

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Review Of Timothy Snyder’s “On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons From The Twentieth Century” 

By Carlos Lozada
The Washington Post (2/24/17)

The early cautions that Donald Trump could become an American strongman, trampling our sad checks and loser balances, came in the late spring of last year — and they were both dire and a bit conflicted. “Trump is an extinction-level event” for American democracy, Andrew Sullivan declared in New York magazine, even while wondering if he was overreacting. And Washington Post columnist Robert Kagan’s broadside, “This is how fascism comes to America,” was as much an attack on a feckless Republican Party for falling in line behind Trump’s nomination as a surefire prediction of what was to be.

Now, nine months later, the warnings have become more specific and resigned, and thus even more believable. Trump may attract scorn and ridicule — think of the late-night jokeslow approval ratings and all that #NotMyPresident stuff — but he elicits ever stronger fears of homegrown authoritarianism. In the latest Atlantic, David Frum paints a plausible landscape of American illiberalism circa 2020, when voting is harder, self-censorship is rampant, Congress is submissive, graft is pervasive and truth is ever hazier. This is the gradual eclipse of liberty, “not by diktat and violence, but by the slow, demoralizing process of corruption and deceit,” he writes.

Historian Timothy Snyder does not offer a corrective to the pessimism of this genre — he is a scholar of the Holocaust, after all — but begins to illuminate a path forward from it. “On Tyranny” is a slim book that fits alongside your pocket Constitution and feels only slightly less vital. …

Read the Rest


 “Americans today are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or communism in the twentieth century. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience.”

— Timothy Snyder, On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons From The Twentieth Century’