I’m all for Los Federales just leaving the city of Portland and letting it destroy itself, then sending a bill to the city for the destruction of federal property, but, on the flip side, they should not be allowed to destroy federal property with impunity
— WilliamTeach2 (Parler – Wteach) (@WTeach2) July 23, 2020
That was the headline yesterday. It’s changed a bit since if you click on the link
Mayor Ted Wheeler attended a protest in downtown Portland Wednesday night to answer protesters’ questions and hear their concerns. He was still in the crowd around 11:30 p.m. when federal officers used tear gas and other munitions to disperse the thousands of protesters outside the Multnomah County Justice Center.
Video from New York Times reporter Mike Baker shows Wheeler at the fence around the Justice Center as flash bangs and tear gas were being deployed by federal officers.
“I’m not gonna lie, it stings, it’s hard to breathe, and I can tell you with 100% honesty I saw nothing that provoked this response. It’s nasty stuff, I’m not afraid but I am pissed off,” Wheeler told Baker. “This is an egregious overreaction on the part of the federal officers. There was nothing that I saw anybody do that warranted this reaction. As you can see, all it’s done is piss everybody off. It’s made everybody angry. They’ve come in and they kicked the hornet’s nest. This is not a de-escalation strategy. This is flat out urban warfare and it’s being brought on the people of this country by the president of the United States and it’s got to stop now. This is a threat to our democracy.”
There’s something that the news outlet, which is a Portland TV station, forgot
Mayor Ted Wheeler, a Democrat, said it was the first time he’d been tear gassed and appeared slightly dazed and coughed as he put on a pair of goggles someone handed him and drank water. He didn’t leave his spot at the front, however, and continued to take gas. Around Wheeler, the protest raged, with demonstrators lighting a large fire in the space between the fence and the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse and the pop-pop-pop of federal agents deploying tear gas and stun grenades into the crowd.
If you’re lighting things on fire, you aren’t protesting peaceably anymore. If Wheeler doesn’t want the federal officers in Portland, then he should tell people to stop attacking the federal center and federal employees. Stop the vandalism. Stop the property destruction. Stop tearing down fencing, stop throwing things, stop trying to break in. It’s that simple. It’s cause and effect: the violent hooligans attacked the federal buildings, hence, federal officers came.
Oh, BTW, the protesters jeered Wheeler and called for him to resign.
Protesters in the crowd held signs aloft that read “Tear Gas Ted” in reference to the Portland Police Bureau’s use of the substance before federal agents arrived. When the mayor left the protest, around 12:40 a.m., some protesters surrounded him and shouted angrily at him as he walked away. One person shouted, “You’ve got to be here every single night!”
.@tedwheeler says, “I saw nothing that provoked this response” when asked about his thoughts on federal law enforcement deploying tear gas.
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) July 23, 2020
What happens when all these businesses, and those in other parts of the city, flee? The owners may “support the purpose of the protests”, they don’t want their businesses trashed and know that few are going to want to come to the area.
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