portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article

m20: day x

Police Organization a Significant Risk

disorganization among cops could have easily lead to violent riots.
At the second march this evening, I noticed the same phenomena twice, and I find it unacceptable. On two separate occasions I was in a group of people who were completely surrounded by riot cops: in front, with guns, telling us to stop; In back, with pepper spray, telling us to "move move move." In both cases it became clear that the two forces of police were not aware of the other, as I watched one cop lift his visor, peer over the crowd of protesters to verify that we weren't just lying en masse when we claimed we had nowhere to go, and then order his companions to halt. On both occasions it seemed like the use of force was immanent, and I fear that in a more agitated setting, this sort of entrapment-- ordering us to leave without moving on threat of violence--could potentially turn a peaceful march into a violent riot. Something that I, and probably the police themselves do not desire.
an angel 22.Mar.2003 00:15

peace

there is no need for riots. if the people are truly there for peace, then neither the police nor the people are going to start up such a thing. let's keep our focus positive and keep our spirits high.

hmmm 22.Mar.2003 00:16

jal

accident or tactic???

to an angel 22.Mar.2003 00:43

reverend felix

I think you make a great point. I do have faith that the citizens of portland will keep a level head, even when the authorities don't.