How calls for justice morphed into the violence that struck the city.
The DA and mayor decided political violence was ok, as long as they agreed with the cause. It really isn't much different than a 50s sheriff in the South looking the other way at Klan violence.
The biggest question to me now is why wasn't the FBI more active in bringing federal racketeering charges against Rose City Antifa and others engaged in conspiracy to commit violent crimes. Many former FBI officials have been speaking out to express their shock at this dereliction.
A solid demonstration of how to think and write perfectly reasonably about a perfectly unreasonable situation. I have mixed feelings about the piece--some very positive and some very negative--and will have to think a bit in order to sort it out. The line that disturbs me the most is the bit about "...the majority staying silent, whether out of fear of being branded right-wing or racist or, given the pandemic, wanting to stay clear of the whole thing." If it was only a story about property damage that would be one thing, but there were abundant and perfectly serious death threats underscored by multiple physical mob attacks. And the explicit stated goal of Antifa and many other organised rioters is to "tear the system down" presumably with property damage being an important symbolic element. Hopefully the majority will come out of it's stupor sometime soon. Towards this I would like to see more investagative reporting on this story and would welcome stories that are not afraid disturb and to expose enemies of the public and the leaders of organised violence against our institutions. The reflexive cancellation of a young British musician over the mere mention of Andy Ngo's book does not point in a good direction and I am concerned that the silent majority will not get the raw information and facts needed for them to sort out how much we should value "the system" and whether it is worth defending or not.
What's crazy is how my fellow PDXers can't connect the dots on how we got here.
Watching the city council turn over a couple of years ago, it was obvious, but the residents just don't get it. They can't imagine how their "compassionate" policies could be hurting the city and its inhabitants. SMDH.
"As the white college kid in the black bloc outfit told me, “We’ve tried for 20 years to do it another way. It hasn’t worked. Nothing changes except with violence.”" And "May the things we burn light the way."
The struggle for me in all of this (as an avowed "radical" and "progressive" who's found out in the past couple years I'm more an "old-school, Enlightenment liberal" after all) is, are the above statements true?
People are (always) fed up with the existing system and want a new system (or no system at all in the case of anarchists, as if that's even possible for deeply social animals like humans), but does burning everything down ever really make things better? EVER? Seems like it ends up (long-term and probably short-term, too) only hurting the people the burners are claiming to be doing it on behalf of (poor people and communities of color, usually). But I'd love to see objective evidence that I'm wrong...
More Nancy Rommelmann at Persuasion, please.
We saw all of this on a smaller scale in Richmond, Virginia. Our mayor, who started his political career slashing the tires of Republicans and became mayor by being the Clintons’ bagman’s bagman, ceaselessly pandered to the mobs, and it didn’t matter. Mayor Stoney ordered the Commonwealth’s Attorney for the City, who’s the wife of a very progressive congressman, to drop all charges against the agitators, to be in “solidarity” with the rioters. At one point, they broke into the lobby of his condo tower with AR-15s before those nasty LEOs convinced them to back down. Coincidentally, the weekend riots stopped around the same time the restaurants reopened in this foodie town. Staying up all night committing arson and vandalism really makes brunch miserable.
Sharing an article I just saw in Wall Street Journal:
"Portland, Ore., Can’t Find Police for Unit to Fight Rising Murder Rate
Few volunteer for new gun-violence team that comes with more oversight and a mission to combat racism after a history of profiling"