As far as I can tell the road to the airport is open here in Portland, just the usual traffic, and of course the internet and broadcast media are up for the moment. Nonetheless progressive Portland breathlessly awaits an invasion tomorrow by religious fundamentalists hellbent on taking the country back to the Dark Ages. Patriot Prayer, the Vancouver Washington based “far right” group created to join the street battles that began in 2016 with Trump’s campaign, has scheduled a rally for tomorrow, August 22, anniversary of their brawl on the streets of downtown Portland last year with anarchists. Police did not intervene then and police chief Chuck Lovell has announced they won’t involve themselves this time either.
Anticipatory agitation has reached a fever pitch in the fever swamp that is anarchist social media, where competition to be the bravest and wokest whips the horses of passion onward. It’s ironic, but the behavior of the anarchist hive resembles, I think, the behavior of an isolated madman with nothing to check his self-reinforcing paranoid and grandiose delusions. No discordant or hesitant voices to serve as a conscience.
The event location has been changed and Patriot Prayer says they’ll announce the new location Sunday morning. Meanwhile the antifa counter rallies are already scheduled. No one has permits, which have become a relic of our more orderly recent past.
Mayor Ted Wheeler and some black clergy organized a “Choose Love” event live-streamed out of a local pub yesterday. His admonition to refrain from violence against the Patriot group was muted into oblivion by the necessary self-preservative signaling about the utter moral repugnance with which he views the supposed Nazis; all with barely a glance toward the active element that is antifa violence.
It was all steep downhill from this tepid call, with representatives of various progressive interests lining up to denounce the “white supremacy” and “white nationalism” of the worthless, no good, dangerous fascists, the profound threat they represent and the bravery of those who “protect” the city from them, with an unenthusiastic pitch for peace, maybe. At points it felt like Marc Antony’s funeral oration in Julius Caesar. The speakers did manage to advance their individual ambitions; Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury, second-generation Oregon power broker and probable candidate for governor, basically made a red-meat stump speech for the woke, and specifically asserted the speech of the rightwingers is not “equivalent” to the speech of, say, police abolitionists and anarchists. Notably Multnomah County District Attorney of the Soros class, a positive ally of the anarchist movement, Mike Schmidt, gave brief and general remarks. I suspect his restraint results from anticipation he may have to file or not file charges as a result of tomorrow’s expected battle, and any assertive and definitive statements will only contribute to any controversy surrounding those actions.
The event could still be cancelled of course. I’ll be out there to document it as best as I can. There’s my footage from last year’s dust-up below. The rightwingers in fact lost the optics battle then, as their exit from downtown resembled a retreat under fire.
Alas, there is no flight of refugees out of town. Looks like I’ll be waiting a little longer for the real estate market to crater.