Update: Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all counts as I was writing this.
Last Friday night summer weather returned to downtown Portland and so did antifa. A mentally ill man with a gun was shot and killed by police in Lents Park that morning, and as is standard now a crowd formed to harass police at the crime scene.
PPB said during the on-scene investigation a crowd estimated to be over 100 people tore down crime-scene police tape and came into the work area.
A line of officers had to create a blockade on multiple sides of the scene to keep the crowd back. Police say officers were hit with sticks and full water bottles were thrown at them. A group of people grabbed an officer’s baton and tried to pull it away. Officers deployed OC (pepper) spray to stop the criminal behavior.
At least one police vehicle’s tires were flattened. As officers began to leave the scene, police say they were chased and had things thrown at them. Officers used smoke canisters in an attempt to help them leave, but people kept following them. A Rubber Ball Distraction Device was also used to allow officers to leave. No officers were injured. No arrests were made. Officers did not deploy chemical munitions.
During the Derek Chauvin trial there seems to be an agreement among the factions of the left to “center” yet again black voices. The “stop Asian hate” grift, probably not bound for long-term preeminence here anyway, was stood down. Despite anarchists’ advocacy for the homeless a new law working its way through city government allowing auto-camping in city and residential streets but amended from its original form which would have allowed homeless camps in parks, has barely stirred their interest one way or another, with its dull, depressing details about grey water, compost toilets and zoning laws. The mentally ill man shot by police after they answered calls about a man with a gun turned out to have been holding a replica. He was also turned out to be white. Antifa is consistent and resourceful enough to rally around it, but blacks as always are indifferent.
But right now it’s all about the blacks, with the Chauvin trial result nigh. An adverse decision could bring the angry black element and large crowds of early summer last to downtown and elsewhere. As if warming up for a post-verdict campaign, antifa is attacking multiple targets.
For no clear reason the Apple store downtown became the target of about a hundred black-bloc anarchists. At 1:52 in the video below you’ll hear what police later claimed were shots fired from a vehicle. At 3:42 you can see Apple’s security guards evacuating after the fire was put out.
They also returned to befoul the hapless Oregon Historical Society again. Despite the museum’s thoroughgoing wokeness for several years now, having “history” in your name and a history of engaging in history, which in Oregon used to mean celebrating pioneers and settlers, Lewis and Clark and the like. Now despite straining to retcon Oregon’s history as one of women of color and the like the museum, like the nation as a whole, is learning that feeding this beast does not content it
Not far from the church, the Oregon Historical Society was also damaged and had their windows smashed for the second time in a year.
“Here we are again, it is depressing on many levels,” said Kerry Tymchuk, the museum’s director. He says after the last time, they reinforced doors and windows to help keep people out.
“We invested in windows that were impenetrable so they weren’t able to get in as they did last time and throw flares in to the building or steal things, which they did last time.” He said fixing the damage will cost several thousand dollars.
The museum and church will both remain open. And they both believe there has to be a better way to solve problems in our community other than violence.
“If history teaches us anything, it’s that vandalism and violence or not the answer,” said Tymchuk. “Talking in conversation, working together is the answer.”
I’m not sure he knows his history. The anarchists made plain their reasoning:
But the most inexplicable target has to be First Christian Church nearby. I noticed they’d boarded up maybe a month ago, despite being a very pro-gay church focused on feeding the homeless. Today is Tuesday and the Chauvin verdict has just come down. A large caravan of police vehicles, federal and local, split freeway traffic heading east out of Portland with sirens blaring.
I’m confident antifa has actions planned regardless of the favorable verdict.