Portland police use tear gas against racial justice protesters. Photo courtesy of KOIN-6 News.
The George Floyd Black Lives Matter protests have launched an extraordinary movement against police violence in Portland, with more than three months of daily protests. Legal observers describe the demonstrations as overwhelmingly peaceful, yet they have been met by extreme police brutality. The array of military weapons deployed has injured thousands of Portlanders in horrifying ways and in ways that are still unknown. The Portland Police Bureau is using weapons of war against the public itself, yet it looks the other way at far right violence - including their launch of bottle rocket bombs, and their firing of guns and paint guns at protesters. The potential for greater harm is a serious and immediate concern.
On Wednesday, September 23rd from 4:00 until 6:00 PM, Portland United Against Hate, UNITE Oregon, First Unitarian Portland, and the Portland Metro People’s Coalition is hosting a comprehensive forum to illuminate the physical, psychological, legal, and financial impact of this police violence to date. We will hear from targets of kinetic munitions, tear gas, long-range acoustic devices, bull rushes, beatings, threats, and intimidation, as well as from legal, medical, psychological, and human rights experts describing the long-term health consequences and threats to our First Amendment rights.
Please join us for this forum featuring targets of state violence, medical and legal experts, and on-the-ground observers including members of Oregon PSR, Veterans for Peace, NARAL, and Physicians for Human Rights. Speakers will include activist and Portland protest organizer Lilith Sinclair and Alex Vitale, author of The End of Policing and coordinator of the Policing and Social Justice Project at Brooklyn College. Speaking on behalf of Oregon PSR will be Dr. Anita Randolph, OHSU neuroscientist and co-author of the report Riot Control Agents: Systemic Reassessment of Adverse effects on Health, Mental Stability, and Social Inequities.