portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article commentary portland metro

alternative media | human & civil rights | resistance & tactics


Police resistance tactic to be explored...
Lights. Bright, bright, and brighter lights. Any demonstration that is done at night (might work during the day too!) we must have extremely powerful lights. If anyone was at the J20 demonstration in downtown Portland and happened to witness the Chevron takeover you may have noticed the police have their own media presence in full force. When commercial or indy photographers or videographers try and capture the police presence many officers shine bright lights into the eye of the camera which completely distorts our images. The police have given us a gift. IT IS NOT ILLEGAL TO TAKE BRIGHT LIGHTS WITH YOU AT NIGHT. DO YOU WANT THE POLICE AND TERRORISM TASK FORCE VIDEOTAPING YOUR LEGAL RIGHT TO PROTEST? Then lets use THEIR TACTICS against them. Distractions throw police off guard. Of course the police are there to protect the innocent people of Portland (blah, blah, blah) so I am offering a PEACEFUL means to resist the police LEGALLY. Bright halogen lamps can be had for a very low price and if just a few people carried them and shined them at the police and their videographers then that could be an aid to our resistance. If I can't take a picture or film the police during a peaceful protest what do you think they are going to do if havoc breaks out? BRING YOUR LAMPS, LIGHTS, HALOGEN CELESTIAL SUN SHINERS TO THE NEXT NIGHT PROTEST AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS. Any ideas or suggestions are greatly appreciated. Peace is the only answer and I hope you use this means to that end. May we change the world and empower ALL SENTIENT BEINGS. Blessings to all (even the police).

add a comment on this article

Good idea 01.Feb.2005 17:46


Great idea. Usually when the corporate media takes a step into a protest to interveiw a policemen we chant things that wouldn't be allowed on corporate media. Like, when will the protestors get a voice. Usually they just block our voices out, so we play their game. We get a large group of people to chant curse words as loud as they can to make the tape not filmable. Legal, fun, and works. When the corporate media tries to film bad footage, or record it on sound, try using this tactic. Obviously, if it is part of the peaceful protest try to refrain from cursing near children. They shouldn't be censored, but it's a polite thing to do for their parents. Try to say anything that won't be allowed on corporate media, or better yet try to say your message as loud as you can.

Police will pepper spray you if you do the bright light thing. They'll pepper spray you anyways so do it anyways.

Another tip 01.Feb.2005 17:52

chippewa oye

Red lensed glasses make night vision easier and also make it possible for your eyes to adjust better to the night after seeing a bright light. That's possibly why car tail lights are red. Cyclists like me use red lenses to improve night vision. That's how I know.

Legality in Question? 01.Feb.2005 23:05

Bright Lights

Why would you be pepper sprayed if you used bright lights from a distance in a peaceful demonstration? Is there a law stating you can't have high-powered flashlights in a protest? All you have to do is block the police media's ability to use their cameras and video devices correctly. In conjunction with your ideas about chanting ideals that can't be published on the corporate news this tactic seems to have some synergy to it... We all really need to explore what our rights are as protesters so that the police and corporate media don't continue to dominate our liberating efforts. If it is illegal to shine bright lights towards the hundreds of police officers (basically one cop per protester) then this tactic wouldn't be breaking any laws if we used it against the corporate juggernauts instead, correct? Again, I am 100% for peace and I do not encourage any means that will lead to violence against anyone. We are fighting our own war here and it won't be won if we use force or military style encounters with the government - THEY KNOW THIS GAME TOO WELL BECAUSE THAT IS HOW THEY PLAY AGAINST THEIR OWN PEOPLE AND THOSE OF OTHER NATIONS. Freedom comes from within. Find your inner peace, then let that activist/protestor/*DECENT POLITICIAN* (think Kucinich) rise from the ashes of your disenfranchised soul and unleash your power that will stop ALL oppression. Love and compassion are the only permanent solutions. We must use love to topple hate.

Good point, 01.Feb.2005 23:13


Good point, it is most likely legal to shine bright lights at the police, Bright Lights. However, I think we all have noticed that the police tend to pepper spray people who are doing nothing illegal. They do this frequently, in fact. It's probably worth a try anyway, though. Pepper spray isn't that bad. Brind some Liquid Antacid and Water, and the burning mostly subsides in 10 minutes or so. I'm planning on bringing a bright light of some sort to the next protest.

I have used lights in other actions before 02.Feb.2005 10:36

Eduardo Plata

Camera strobes make night vision impossible for four to ten seconds and impede vision for a short time after that (red dot effect). Its most important use would be temporarily disorienting its target. Judicious use on small-sized targets (2-3 targets only) or cooperative use on larger targets (baton charge &c).

Of course, all talk of small unit tactics are meaningless without sufficient prior organization to make the deployment of a dozen camera strobes in the least bit effective. Don't let desire for theoretical leaderless organizations get in the way of effectiveness.

... 02.Feb.2005 12:15


Okay, we get that police videographers are not the intended audience of a public demonstration. Who IS the intended audience? Which cameras are we NOT supposed to shine lights at? Indymedia readers don't need to see digital photos of some kid holding a "bush sucks!" sign to know the world's gone to hell. What are we supposed to be "demonstrating", and to whom? This tradition of downtown demo's seems to have lost track of its original purpose. It's like mass for people who don't like church any more.

RE: ... 02.Feb.2005 13:13

Bright Lights

Corporate media distorts the truth during protests. About two years ago protesters shut down the Burnside bridge while the war on Iraq was beginning. This was a peaceful demonstration but corporate media coverage (all the way to CNN) only aired two anarchists burning an American flag (while the protesters were enraged at this action as it wasn't part of their movement). The demonstration was not Anti-America it was Anti-war. I personally believe the IndyMedia gives you the actual events without the distortion. There is bias in everything but when you can see all the pictures, videos, audio in their pure form, without spin, then you have actual *media.*

As for the police, well, you'd be surprised who gets to see their videos and who ends up being interrogated by the FBI or Terrorism Task Force members. Many times it is the IndyMedia photoheads that get attacked *after* the protest because of their intent to share their truth through photojournalism.

There are plenty of progressive news outlets in the USA, particularly in Portland, where our images can spread the truth... These are our intended audiences (at first). Complete coverage of an event is crucial to remember and look back upon versus reading something on the super-spin cycle of Disney's' KATU or FOX about the thousands of Portland anarchists burning flags and hating America (never happened).

Truth will set us free. Police media and corporate media will keep us locked down.

More ideas, comments, slams or anything else on this topic would be great. We need to be prepared for accurate reporting when the next event occurs. I love you all... :-)

L E D 02.Feb.2005 15:21


led's are really bright these days and if you got a bunch of them wired up it wouldnt take much to power them
unlike other bulbs that take alot of juice

take it a step further 02.Feb.2005 16:12


buy some cheap-o lazer pointer and blind the pigs... not so legal, but hard to detur as long as front lines are strong. The long range also means that you can shine it from a great distance, far removed from any action, and if they can pinpoint your location, by the time they have responded you can be long gone.

Talk about red-dot effect... and if you had a bunch of people doing it- whooo!

Of course a certain kind of coctail that starts with an "m" is pretty bright as well- but as long as you're doing the whole 'non-violence' thing... never mind.

Just as long as you remember that 'non-violence' WILL NOT SAVE YOU- the police will use any and all force in dealing with 'dissenters' and 'subversives'. To them a bright light may as well be a molitov! They are a lawless bunch of troublemakers and should never be trusted!

P.S. I do not advocate the use of any of the above-mentioned tactics in any way.

BRIGHT LIGHT! 03.Feb.2005 14:30

Bird Dog


Try going to target.
Not that I want to send them any business, but you can get a reghargable flood light for about $20.00.
Hey maby they can send me some money for advertising for them.

add a comment on this article