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R. Westlund - the author of this Press Release - is one of the Portland Street Medics who were arrested in Minneapolis-St. Paul this week during the Republican National Convention; is also a trained Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) and eyewitness to some of the abuses and atrocities.
This Press Release includes the names of some of the arrested Street Medics and describes some of the details of the incidents from the battle zones, including Police attitudes and behavior plus the level of violence and injuries sustained by peaceful demonstrators at the DNC who were engaged in activities entirely protected by the US Constitution.
The Radical History Series, Tuesday nights at Laughing Horse Books, continues, and will feature some nearly-lost bits of anarchist history, reclaimed in the context of current struggles. Shawn says: I'm just recently back in Portland, after 18 years in NW Ohio, where I worked as a bookseller and taught (cultural studies, philosophy, women's studies, intellectual history) at Bowling Green State University. I'm currently an independent scholar and archivist, affiliated with the Anarchist Studies Network, the Movement of the Libertarian Left, and, of course, Laughing Horse. I'm actively archiving public-domain material, as well as translating anarchist material from French. If you're interested in helping with that sort of project, or if you are interested in more focused study in radical history, stop by one of the sessions and we can talk.
Wendy Binion, who works with Portland Indymedia, was snatched from Mears Park in St. Paul during the rally prior to the March for Our Lives on September 2nd, 2008. She was surrounded by riot cops in the street and was taken away to a special facility for processing. Her detainment is part of a definite pattern by authorities during the RNC to disrupt and intimidate independent media journalists who were covering the demonstrators' perspective from the streets of St. Paul.
The Portland Grassroots Media Camp is a weekend of hands-on skill shares, media workshops, presentations, discussions and gatherings aimed to empower people with tools and skills to express themselves. The camp is open to anyone, emphasizing the inclusion of those who are traditionally excluded from media representation, creation and production.
As of tonight, dozens of journalists have been arrested while observing street action this week in downtown St. Paul, host city of the RNC. Some were arrested pre-emptively and still sit in jail. Along with the most showcased arrests, that of Amy Goodman and two DN! producers, are those of reporters with community news sites and independent media of all stripes.
New journalists must not only be the eyes and ears for the public, sometimes they must also protect the public, as was the situation over and over again in St. Paul.
Here's just one example: [...]
Fred Phelp's 'church' which spreads their message of hate will be returning to the Portland area tomorrow afternoon at 12:15 to protest the funeral of Private Tan Q. Ngo, 20, of Beaverton, Ore., died Aug. 27 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered in Zabul Province, Afghanistan, when his mounted patrol received small arms and rocket-propelled grenade fire.
It is unknown and doubtful that the Tan was queer or had queer affiliations. The Westboro Baptist Church bigots don't care. They thank god for 9/11, Pearl Harbor and most lately Gustav. They have made it a point to protest soldiers to show that this is what god does to hurt America for 'supporting' the queer agenda.
Whatever you think about soldiers and vets, this is uncalled for. These people have no right to spread their message of hate at a person's funeral, regardless of that person's career or sexual orientation. If you can, arrive to help block out these bigots' message of hate. This funeral should not be a spectacle. On a side note, it would be nice if people would dress in black and show up en-masse to black out the bigotry coming from Kansas.
Weds, Sep. 3rd, 2008: In between explosions of concussion grenades and teargas clouds in Minneapolis-St. Paul, volunteer Street Medics from all over the country who have assembled there are continuing to provide much needed first aid and medical care to injured and frightened people everywhere in the city where lawful and peaceful assemblies, passersby, journalists and bystanders are getting attacked indiscriminately and without provocation by Police, National Guard and teams of unidentified Federal Agencies without badges or numbers.
Starting at dawn on Tuesday, Portland Street Medics who were arrested while treating injured people at the RNC were being released one by one by the illegitimate authorities who had seized them. One of our colleagues is still in jail and has not yet been charged with anything. All of the arrests of Portland Street Medics are entirely illegal.
Independent journalist caught in the middle of panic and mayhem during an attack with concussion grenades and teargas against a peaceful march: | Rubber bullets fired directly into a small crowd of peaceful people; Street Medics attacked: | Richard, Well Known Activist From Portland, Released From Jail | Ramsey County's Contempt For Justice: Tell Them To Stop The Torture
Oral arguments were heard today in the continuing saga over the fate of the sea lions of the Columbia. Here is a quick recap. (For those not familiar with the roots of this story, I refer you to other articles that I and others have written in the past. You can do a search of this site by using the search function on the top right of the screen.)
To many of us who were present in the courtroom last spring, when Judge Mosman inexplicably ruled that killing sea lions would not cause irrevocable harm, it has been clear that this would be an uphill battle in this particular courtroom. (Thank God for the appeals process. The 9th circuit court of appeals almost immediately overturned that decision, stating that, by definition, killing a living being would, in fact, cause irrevocable harm. They granted the injunction that Mosman had refused to grant, against killing any sea lions while the merits of the case were being decided. Those who remember the grisly deaths in the traps last spring realize the injunction did not protect the sea lions anyway.)
* Fossil Fools Day
* Radical Eco-Feminist Westcoast Tour
* Disruption at NW Natural's Annual Shareholder Meeting
* Cascadia Earth First! Protests the International Whaling Commission
* Greed Continues to Threaten Cascadia Forests
* Sea Lion Trapping Results in Murder
On a Sunday in March of 2004, Jahar Perez looked in the rearview window of his car and saw something that surely caused his heart to beat faster. He saw a Portland police car cruising close behind his car. Perez had done nothing wrong. He had committed no crime, he had violated no ordinances, he had committed no traffic infractions. But there it was, just the same. Perez had reason to fear this sight even more than many of us in Portland: Jahar Perez was Black. And, as a Black man in Portland, he knew all too well that the police never need a reason to stop African Americans in this city. They never need a valid reason to search, harass, intimidate, beat, taser, and even kill Black people in Portland. They have done it over and over again. Not only have they gotten away with it; They've actually gotten medals for it. Again and again and again, the ridiculously inappropriate phrase, "I feared for my life," has gotten officer after officer off for murder.
And apparently, it was enough. Both officers were cleared by the obligatory secret grand jury. Although a toothless inquest later ruled the killing a homicide, no charges were ever filed. Both officers were allowed to keep their jobs and their guns. Sery later resigned, but is now carrying a badge and a gun out in Beaverton. Macomber is still prowling the streets of Portland. Yes, this is how it works. Again and again and again.
This week, word comes that the city of Portland will finally settle a lawsuit with Jahar Perez's family. They will hand the Perez family a check for $350,000, and business will go back to usual. I'm shocked by this "award." Although it is clearly an admission of guilt, it is way too little, way too late. The PPB should have changed its policies long ago, to prevent this kind of senseless killing. They should have disciplined Sery and Macomber severely. Both should have been stripped of their badges, and both should be serving lengthy prison sentences for the violent homicide which they committed. They should never be allowed to carry guns again. But none of this has happpened. I'm shocked that anyone could conclude that $350,000 is a fair price to pay for the taking of a life -- especially the predictable, repeated, savage taking of the life of yet another Black man on the streets of Portland.
The marriage of private and public security forces and the Portland Business Alliance is threatening the organic infrastructure of the inner Eastside of Portland. Recent events point to gradual takeover... it's almost nostalgic, thinking of the days when PPI and Clean and Safe patrol and harassment were limited to Portland's Corporate Livingroom: Pioneer Courthouse Square and Pioneer Place. Then the Portland Business Alliance took advantage of unconstitutional, racist and fascist 'laws' like the Sit-Lie and Anti-Camping ordinances and Drug Free Zones in order to expand their control over most of downtown. In cooperation with the Sheriff, the Portland Police, Tri-met Security, Portland Patrol Services, Blackwater and others, they have even set up a fusion center (go see it yourself: the logos cover the windows) at the Old Town/Chinatown MAX stop, right next to the TopOff3 dirty bomb target: the Steel Bridge.
Now they're on the Central Eastside Industrial and Commercial area. With spreading gentrification, real-estate grabs and looming MLK/Grand Streetcar plans (where Blumenauer's business buddies are padding his PAC coffers and re-election plans), it appears that the PBA and their rent-a-cop thugs are reaching their tentacles into our dear neighbourhood. We stopped the big box development plans on the Burnside Bridge, but that wasn't a big enough hint. The other day they were seen rounding up ruffkins and later came into our shop to tell us we had nothing to be afraid of: we were safe now. What I want to know is which businesses asked them to come over here and "save us" in the first place? We're doing fine on our own, thank you very much. If there are any problems, it's the drunk Pearl District prowlers, getting their kicks at the Doug Fir and Union Jacks, vomiting and knocking over our plant boxes. That's no reason to call over private mercenaries and harass the homeless, now, is it?
A number of Street Medics from Portland were arrested on Monday afternoon (Sep 1st) while tending to injured protesters. All of them belong to one affinity group which has been participating in the actions as a unit of Street Medics acting together.
About half were released by evening, while a few individuals among them are still being held. They have been singled out for "special procedures". Legal support and lawyers are trying to help out with their case as it seems to be a unique situation wherein the Street Medics might be charged with unusual (and outrageous) offenses.
If you have any funds to help with bail money and related expenses for the Street Medics, please email us at: email@example.com Everything you give will go toward enabling us to continue doing much needed Movement work and providing essential community service.
I went to the labor day picnic at Oaks Park. Frankly, the free food and rides are about all I get from my union anymore. My wages have failed to keep up with inflation, I work longer hours than I think anyone should, and my health benefits have eroded, yet again. But I get this one bone, year after year. The union picnic. So I went. And I could not help but notice a few things... First, I have to say, it was a strange epiphany to look around and realize, while listening to the lyrics of "Which Side Are You On" by the band General Strike, that almost everyone there was a public employee. I saw almost no representation from the manufacturing or trade jobs, for example. Is that because so very few workers outside of the public sphere are represented by a union? There's some food for thought we should be chewing on along with our free potato salad.
I have to really, seriously question why my union, of all things, would allow Bradwood Landing to hold their PR stunt at MY LABOR DAY PICNIC. Is nothing sacred? Bradwood Landing is NOT EVEN A UNION SHOP! The best they can claim, as they do on their website, is that they "plan" to hire union construction workers to build the unwanted facility. Sorry, that's not union enough. Do you think, for one moment, that once the plant is built, the workers who labor there will be allowed to unionize? Think again. I can't imagine a more stark illustration of how far unions have come from representing the interests of working people, to representing the status quo. This was really despicable.
If you care about keeping LNGs off your river, by the way, you should probably realize that the company that wants to force it on us has obviously launched a very far-reaching PR campaign. It was bad enough to be hearing their ads on NPR, but finding them salaciously doling out free ice cream in exchange for good will and signatures at a UNION PICNIC was beyond words. So much for solidarity.
This photograph was taken on the Columbia river, at St Helens, just off of Sand Island, earlier this week. These are gill nets, my friends. Gill nets, plying the waters of the Columbia river, going after Chinook Salmon.
It was Monday, very early in the morning, just barely getting light. I just happened to spot the twinkling lights and reeling nets, creeping stealthily through the waters just off shore. I stopped in the watery, gray light of dawn and climbed a nearby cliff with my camera, because this is important. THIS is why the salmon are disappearing from the waters of Cascadia. This is what is happening to the Chinook. No, it is not sea lions that are killing off the last salmon in the Columbia, as we have been told by the corporate media and by silly NW politicians afraid to face the truth. It is this. Many people do not realize that nets like these are permitted on the river. When told about it, they often refuse to believe it, pointing out that nets like these are almost universally illegal on inland waters. "Why would we allow nets on the river," I was recently asked, "When more than a dozen species of fish on this river are threatened with extinction?" A very good question.
Nearly a year has passed since Portland anti-racists successfully shut down the main venue for the "Hammerfest" gathering of the white supremacist Hammerskin Nation, which was held in Sherwood, Oregon. The main hosts of the "Hammerfest" gathering were members of the Portland-based Volksfront International, a group that originated from Oregon and which is by far the most significant neo-Nazi organization in our state. Now Volksfront are on the move once again and we are called to respond.
Volksfront have small chapters nationally and internationally. This Labor Day weekend they are holding their annual organizational gathering, the "Althing," in Missouri. A clear and consistent message must be sent that Portland doesn't tolerate the maneuverings of violent racists, and we will continue to expose these hate-mongers as long as they continue to organize under the banner of white nationalism. We actively oppose them even when they have their events in other states.
press statement from rnc welcoming committee after sheriff and sppd raid of convergence space
FRIDAY AUGUST : Assitant Police Chief Bostrom has talked about the St. Paul Standard, and on the anniversary of last years' critical mass police riot, we saw its true face. The ramsey county sheriff's dept and the SPPD raided the RNC convergence space and detained over 50 people in an attempt to preempt planned protests of the rnc on Monday.
Looking for items found in any twin cities house like jars, paint, and rags, this attempt to portray us as criminals and destroy our credibility has already backfired as evidenced by the masses who have come to support us. Children and elderly people were inside the convergence center when the police violently busted down the doors. The police may claim that the raid was executed according to protocol - however, the violence inherent in this action may only be a hint of the violence to be expected on Monday and beyond, and is only a hint at the violence perpetrated daily by the police. The convergence center is simply a gathering place and is not used for illegal actions - it is a place for workshops and trainings. Tonight we were watching films and sharing food.
This action will not deter us from our plans to protest the RNC on September 1st. We want to invite all people who oppose this police oppression to join us on Septemeber 1st. See you in the streets.
Ongoing Coverage at: twincities indymedia
Anarchists Attack Bank in Pittsburgh
The Greater Pittsburgh Anarchist Collective received this anonymous communique and were asked to post it. ------ Late Tuesday night the National City Bank branch on Penn Avenue in Pittsburgh was attacked with iron bars. We damaged the front windows, smashed out the side windows, and destroyed the ATM. The reason we chose this target is obvious. It was an attack on a symbol of the entire capitalist system of exploitation. Primarily, however, we chose to carry out this attack as an act of solidarity with our friends and comrades who are fighting in Denver and the Twin Cities against the conventions. For those of us who cannot be there, this is the least we can do to stand in solidarity with you. We hope that this action inspires you and lets you know that you are not alone. We know that comrades all over the country are carrying out actions like this in solidarity, and we know that there will be many more. Fight your hardest, and we'll do the same.
Three Seattle activists and one Portland activist involved with Team Victory, FNB, SSN, SDS and other projects arrested yesterday at the DNC demonstrations in Denver. They are Marianne, Nicole, Rik (from Seattle) and Scott (from Portland). Charges include interference, failure to disperse, disobeying an officer, as well as other more questionable charges including loitering, begging, and throwing missiles.
Bond set at $530 each and three are out as of 3:30 p.m. Tuesday. Please contact 206-600-1473 for more updates
The Navy SEALS and PPB are, according to published accounts, are due back tonight for further Harassment. "The military and Police must have practice in controlling us." Check out the newest US Military Command "NorthComm". These flights are practice for the military to operate within US cities against US Citizens.
As the Black Death Machines fly over tonight, I urge Portlanders to shine flashlights on these that wish above all else to remain hidden in the shadows (low light operations). Let them know you are watching them.
I presented a Ground Zero Lounge about the possibility of a police state being declared in Denver if protestors rioted at the Democratic National Convention. It featured the Denver International Airport and the Masonic, religious and apocalyptic symbolism throughout the huge mural on the wall there and on other artwork throughout the building.
As I was preparing to go on stage at Dante's, I was called out of the bar by security guards. I wondered what was wrong.
"Come outside, Mr. Lewis. There is something that you should see."
I stepped out into the street, where, all along the curb, people scanned the sky with alarmed expressions. I thought that perhaps they were seeing some anomaly or UFO in the sky. "What's up?" I asked. "I don't see anything."
One security guard said, "Shhhh, listen!"
I heard a faint sound, rather like a lawn mower. As the sound got closer it drowned out the sounds of the downtown Portland streets.
I couldn't believe what I was seeing. There were two low-flying black helicopters buzzing rooftops and dropping armed soldiers on top of buildings. The only time I had seen anything like this before was in an Alex Jones documentary.
This Thursday, Books to Prisoners will be selling some of the overstock books in order to raise money for mailings. This will be at the Last Thursday Art walk near NE. 28th and Alberta from about 3:00 til late..Come early to get great deals on books and support prisoners
pages: 464, 463, 462, 461, 460, 459, 458, 457, 456, 455, 454, 453, 452, 451, 450, 449, 448, 447, 446, 445, 444, 443, 442, 441, 440, 439, 438, 437, 436, 435, 434, 433, 432, 431, 430, 429, 428, 427, 426, 425, 424, 423, 422, 421, 420, 419, 418, 417, 416, 415, 414, 413, 412, 411, 410, 409, 408, 407, 406, 405, 404, 403, 402, 401, 400, 399, 398, 397, 396, 395, 394, 393, 392, 391, 390, 389, 388, 387, 386, 385, 384, 383, 382, 381, 380, 379, 378, 377, 376, 375, 374, 373, 372, 371, 370, 369, 368, 367, 366, 365, 364, 363, 362, 361, 360, 359, 358, 357, 356, 355, 354, 353, 352, 351, 350, 349, 348, 347, 346, 345, 344, 343, 342, 341, 340, 339, 338, 337, 336, 335, 334, 333, 332, 331, 330, 329, 328, 327, 326, 325, 324, 323, 322, 321, 320, 319, 318, 317, 316, 315, 314, 313, 312, 311, 310, 309, 308, 307, 306, 305, 304, 303, 302, 301, 300, 299, 298, 297, 296, 295, 294, 293, 292, 291, 290, 289, 288, 287, 286, 285, 284, 283, 282, 281, 280, 279, 278, 277, 276, 275, 274, 273, 272, 271, 270, 269, 268, 267, 266, 265, 264, 263, 262, 261, 260, 259, 258, 257, 256, 255, 254, 253, 252, 251, 250, 249, 248, 247, 246, 245, 244, 243, 242, 241, 240, 239, 238, 237, 236, 235, 234, 233, 232, 231, 230, 229, 228, 227, 226, 225, 224, 223, 222, 221, 220, 219, 218, 217, 216, 215, 214, 213, 212, 211, 210, 209, 208, 207, 206, 205, 204, 203, 202, 201, 200, 199, 198, 197, 196, 195, 194, 193, 192, 191, 190, 189, 188, 187, 186, 185, 184, 183, 182, 181, 180, 179, 178, 177, 176, 175, 174, 173, 172, 171, 170, 169, 168, 167, 166, 165, 164, 163, 162, 161, 160, 159, 158, 157, 156, 155, 154, 153, 152, 151, 150, 149, 148, 147, 146, 145, 144, 143, 142, 141, 140, 139, 138, 137, 136, 135, 134, 133, 132, 131, 130, 129, 128, 127, 126, 125, 124, 123, 122, 121, 120, 119, 118, 117, 116, 115, 114, 113, 112, 111, 110, 109, 108, 107, 106, 105, 104, 103, 102, 101, 100, 99, 98, 97, 96, 95, 94, 93, 92, 91, 90, 89, 88, 87, 86, 85, 84, 83, 82, 81, 80, 79, 78, 77, 76, 75, 74, 73, 72, 71, 70, 69, 68, 67, 66, 65, 64, 63, 62, 61, 60, 59, 58, 57, 56, 55, 54, 53, 52, 51, 50, 49, 48, 47, 46, 45, 44, 43, 42, 41, 40, 39, 38, 37, 36, 35, 34, 33, 32, 31, 30, 29, 28, 27, 26, 25, 24, 23, 22, 21, 20, 19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1