Siege of Portland, Day 13

At the red light the row of young protesters looked at me expectantly over their masks, holding their signs like the earnest young people they were. Other cars were honking their approval. I made a show of rifling through my glove box.

We’re a suburb about seven miles out of downtown Portland. This was another impressive demonstration by the siege, rallying what looked like almost a hundred people to line up with BLM signs way out here, all earnest, good white dupes lending a little more legitimacy to the bloody movement and a little more of the surreal to it for me.

Rain, sometimes hard, kept the antifa types holding the courts and police under siege to a minimum last night. Somewhere a freeway was shut down and a few dozen hardy souls were out after midnight in cold, wet weather still. We’re in a lull it seems, but downtown Portland still has the feel of occupation.

Portland’s police chief has bailed out, apparently making the decision suddenly and choosing a black subordinate to replace her. She had only been in place for a few months after replacing the city’s first Black Lady police chief, who left the city for a better deal in Philadelphia after a short bumpy tenure marked by low-level anti-Trump rioting and our now quaint series of Patriot Prayer versus antifa skirmishes –which now can be seen as invaluable training for antifa.

Probably related to the chief’s escape, the next day (today) Portland’s mayor has proposed looting 12 million from law enforcement, defunding the three units least popular with blacks–gun reduction, school police and the city’s contribution to the transit police (other municipalities will have to pick up the slack to police transit), handing their budgets over to “communities of color”–no doubt via the same groups behind the rioting and sacking of the Justice Center.

Also chokeholds are banned, or maybe re-banned, it’s not clear (policy was to use them only in “life threatening situations”–perhaps not even to save your life now).

The cave-ins we’ve seen in all manner of institutions have in common the same creepy mea culpa regarding having not acted sooner

During a news conference Tuesday, Wheeler said details of these plans and others are in the works and that Portland’s black community has demanded the changes for years. The mayor acknowledged that he should have acted sooner. 

 And another, distressingly uniform adoption of the language of theory

“My privilege as a white man, my privilege as the mayor and the leader of the institutions of power in this community I believe shielded me from time to time from the many difficult and uncomfortable truths about our history and about our society,” he said. Wheeler is also the police commissioner.

The dazed, defeated mayor promised he’s just beginning the process of handing over the city

The mayor said police reform alone will not get rid of systemic institutional racism and white supremacy in the city, but said it was a start that he believes will help lift the city and make everyone safer.

“White supremacy” is no empty slogan and no joke here. The policy changes and ransomed funds are just the standing demands of now teflon-coated council member Jo Ann Hardesty, who made a little stir, in simpler times of a year or so ago, when she promised to “end white Portland”. She acknowledged today she’s about a decade ahead of schedule.

Wheeler’s capitulations are coming so fast as to throw an already beaten-down police bureau into confusion

It’s unclear where the officers from all three units will be moved. Of the $12 million that Wheeler vowed would be invested in communities of color, $7 million would come from the police bureau 

Cue the Russian accented: “in new America, criminal gang shakes down police”.

Bigger “reform” is on the horizon, of course.

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