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This is a letter I received from Mayor Potter in response to my inquiry of what happened on Sept 8. Since I know very little about this incident, other than what I read on PIMC, I wanted to hear what others have to say in response, and perhaps let Mayor Potter let you know how you feel or what you think. I left out my name to protect my privacy on the web.
From Mayor Potter: I appreciate the time you took to write me regarding the incident on September 8. Anytime police officers are forced to use force as they perform their duties it is rightly a cause for concern for both the public and the Police Bureau. The Police Bureau carefully reviews uses of force from a number of perspectives to determine if the use of force was justified. This includes if there were other options available, could have the officer(s) used other tools or techniques, were the communications skills used by the officers appropriate just to name a few of the considerations.
bEn responds: I am glad that you wrote back and you are doing an awesome job of mayoring this city. You cut the PJTTF and I am very thankful for that. I didn't have the chance to say that Officer Dobson was not to blame for this incident. It was very kind of him to talk to me for that long and I am sorry if I insulted him. I just can't stick up for someone who would defend something like that. That is why I cannot agree with what you say. Seeing the reaction on the young mans face was enough for any person to ask questions and I'm glad I did. Tasing someone younger than the age of 18 can be deadly... I agree that tasers are a good alternative to guns, but I do believe they should be used carefully. The officer that did this did have an alternative to tasing this young man. Witnesses say the officer held his wrist on the ground and could have easily handcuffed him. Instead of handcuffing him, he put this young mans health at risk by tasering him. The fact that he lied to me about that makes me wonder what was he trying to cover up.
previous: [ 15 year old tased twice (Once on ground) ]
When I went to the candle light vigil for Fouad Kaady, I didn't prepare myself mentally for what I had seen. I expected bandanas, angry police officers, and a lot of pissed off people. When I arrived at the square I didn't see that at all. The experience I had at that vigil made me really realize that this actually happens to people like you or me. This happens to totally innocent people. I was brought to tears from what I saw. I saw a sad family, people crying, strangers giving each other hugs, and everyone standing in solidarity, as the cops smirked close by. Everyone was so sad and angry at the police for doing such a thing. How can they get away with a crime like this? I will never forget my experience at that candle light vigil as I hugged complete strangers and cried with them.
When I arrived at Pioneer Square with two friends, I saw a large group of people looking nothing like activists. I saw regular people, with regular clothes crying over their son who had been shot by police. I couldn't have a conversation with anyone before they broke out in tears. It really hurts me that this issue is not looked at by the media as such a big deal. It was a real stroke of reality for me and my peers. To see there expression on their faces will tell you their story. As I passed people I heard strangers talking to each other saying words like, murdered, and five shots. The experience was something that I cannot put into words, it was just so horrible the look on these peoples faces whose son had been murdered and his killers will never be brought to justice. [ read more ]
related articles: [ Candlelight Vigil forn Fouad Kaady 6:30 PM Wednesday 9/21/2005 | Burned kid CANDLELIGHT VIGIL | Burned kid | burned kid | HE WAS BURNED AND WAS FREAKING OUT | Another PDX police shooting? | Police shoot and kill obviously unarmed man near Sandy
I live in St Helens, right near the Boise Cascade mill. I've never really felt good about this neighbor; all summer long yellow-brown veils of smog hung over the city, trailed from the stacks at boise. And just before it rains, the whole town stinks of au de paper mill. I've called DEQ to complain, but never heard back, and I've called city hall, but gotten no help. Today, I learned from the local paper out here that there was a chemical accident nearly 2 weeks ago, that sent 23 people to the hospital. Despite living within spitting distance of the mill, I was never notified of any danger until today, reading it in the paper, 13 days later.
Oregon Indy Media readers might be interested in some of the trail building work that volunteers do in the San Gabriel Mountains in Southern California. The volunteer effort builds trails and performs repairs and maintenance on exist trails, allowing hikers to have a safe, comfortable hike through the mountains, helping to limit errosion, litter, and other problems that can occur when numerous hikers would otherwise crash through the brush making their own trails.
On Saturday September 17, Vinny and I were on our way to the Reliant Arena, but we got a little lost in the sprawling city of Houston, Texas so we made our way to the George R. Brown Convention Center first. This convention center is next to the new baseball stadium where tens of thousands of people were watching an Astros game. Nobody seemed to care that in the building next to the baseball stadium, more than a thousand people still struggling to survive the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
The first thing we saw as we walked up to the George R. Brown Convention Center was a women being turned away from services at the Convention Center. I immediately pulled out my camera and began taking photos, but the police told me that i was not allowed to take photos. They told me that I had to visit the Media Check In area first. [ read more ]
Interview from 'Dome City' with Josh from New Orleans
On September 17, I spoke with Josh from New Orleans. He was sitting on a curb outside of Reliant Arena in Houston, Texas. Reliant Arena is a building next to the Astrodome and has been considered a part of 'Dome City.' Our interview begins with Josh explaining that he could get arrestted that night just for talking to me and giving me a recorded interview. (42:22 minutes / 19.4 MB)
Josh discusses the poor treatment of people evacuated to the Superdome in New Orleans and now living at Reliant Arena in Houston, Texas. Josh says that it is safer at Reliant Arena during the day because in the nighttime there is nobody -- meaning media journalists -- around to witness the horrible treatment inside and outside of the arena. [ read more | download the mp3 | download the torrent ]
Related Articles: [ 75,000 Body Bags Purchased For New Orleans | What is up with Katrina Evacuees in Portland? | If you can go now to New Orleans (or Mississippi) to rescue animals, do it! | food not bombs arrives in new orleans | Getting Your FEMA Money | Worries About Starving Pets In New Orleans May be Exaggerated ]
Apparently, the Bush administration has finally initiated a plan to deal with the havoc of Katrina: When all else fails, blame the environmentalists. And so, after coming under attack from the entire nation due to their ineptitude, obvious racism, and inexcusably slow response to the hurricane disaster, the administration has responded by digging through their pockets to see if there is any conceivable way that they can blame environmentalists for the flooding of New Orleans.
The Clarion-Ledger, a Mississippi newspaper, reported on Saturday that they are in possession of an internal email, sent by the US "Justice" Department to various US attorney's offices around the nation. Asked the leaked email, "Has your district defended any cases on behalf of the Army Corps of Engineers against claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede the Corps' work on the levees protecting New Orleans? If so, please describe the case and the outcome of the litigation."
The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) needs your immediate help to stop Congress and the Bush administration from seriously degrading organic standards. Tomorrow, Tuesday, Sept. 20, acting in haste and near-total secrecy, the U.S. Senate will vote on a "rider" to the 2006 Agriculture Appropriations Bill that will reduce control over organic standards from the National Standards Board and put this control in the hands of federal bureaucrats in the USDA.
Russell Maroon Shoats is a political prisoner being held in the control unit of SCI Greene, a supermax prison in western Pennyvania. Russell was a founding member of Philadelpia's Black Unity Council which eventually merged with the Black Panther Party. While a member of the Philadelphia Panther chapter Russell was arrested and tried for the murder of a police officer. He received an unfair trial, and without adequate legal representation he received two life sentences. Russell has spent twenty-three of his twenty-seven years in prison in a lock-down sensory deprivation unit.
Jericho Boston is organizing a call-in day to demand that Pennsylvania Department of Corrections provide the appropriate health care for Russell Maroon Shoats.
On Wednesday, September 21, 2005, let's flood their phone lines and demand medical care for our freedom fighter. Contact Doctor Falor at SCI-Greene, as well as Mrs. Manson, another health provider there, and demand Maroon receive the PSA test again: Dr. Falor & Mrs. Manson: 724-852-2902
trees older than any living person are being cut and dragged through native forests in the hilynx (hi north) units in the mt. hood national forest just off hwy 26.
a quick visit to the hi north units (see bark-out.org) yesterday to check on logging progress revealed that more huge hemlocks are being removed in units 13, and possibly unit 1. that suggests that they are finished with unit 6. i did not want to challenge the vehicle parked in the middle of 2130310 (as it had logger written all over it) so i was unable to see the situation in unit 6. at least some of the equipment has been moved south down 2130310. next up will undoubtedly be units 2, 9, and 10.... this is a beautiful area with an open forest unfortunately ridiculously roaded
Animal welfare charities working in New Orleans and Louisiana to save animals affected by the hurricane, have repeatedly asked Governor Blanco and President Bush's federal agencies to provide more assistance. From the lack of necessary help to the abandoned animals stuck in people's homes and starving and dying on the streets of Louisiana, Governor Blanco has shown she does not care about animals, or the families and their pets in the State of Louisiana. They have done nothing despite numerous requests by people asking for them to help.
Report Back from Food Not Bombs first full day in New OrleansFor the second day, Arizona and Hartford Food Not Bombs have made it into the "closed" sections of New Orleans to share food with the courageous people who stuck out the storm and have not had any symbolence of relief efforts in almost 3 weeks. Yesterday, 5 people from both Arizona and Pittsuburg were not stopped while rolling through check points to deliver much needed hot food to the people who resisted the racist evacuation plan, but face an increasingly difficult situation where the government refuses to provide the most basic of survial help. 9 out of 10 people told us that it was the first hot meal they had recieved since the storm, and that aid agency are intentionally ignored the areas of New Orleans that had fought evacuation.
Three mice infected with the bacteria that causes bubonic plague disappeared from a laboratory in Newark, NJ about 2 weeks ago. The mice are missing from the Public Health Research Institute at the University of Medicine and Dentistry. This lab conducts bio-terrorism research for the federal government. One of the ways people contract bubonic plague is from infected rodents.
I love Portland, and appreciate all the activism there. I want to make that point clear right out the gate. However, i don't see enough people mobilizing to defend our constitution and there are places outside Oregon where people do fantastic jobs exposing the police state control grid. These are not conspiracy theorists. It may appear so, but all the information checks out, that is if you do the homework.
This film now has over a dozen interviews and I am very tired. The Rally against the global government took place today at the Texas State Capital and Alex Jones did quite well in the burning sun. I will show clips of my interviews on my local cable tv show, Outside the Box, in random segments.
[ Alex Ansary's blog: Outside the Box ]
Small bicycle pavement markings have begun to appear on local streets all over the City of Portland. Their installation will continue over the next two months until approximately 700 are installed. These markings, called "Bicycle Boulevard Pavement Markings," are approximately a foot in diameter-with some including directional arrows-and will indicate to bicyclists those local streets that have been developed as "bicycle boulevards."
Thursday night around 10 pm, I was walking home along Alberta St, and suddenly police cruisers began speeding by with thier lights on from all directions.
There must have been 15 of them all together. As I walked by, it seemed like they were converging just south of Alberta on about 18th. Other cruisers set up a perimiter for several blocks in every direction. It was impossible to get closer than about two blocks from where the bulk of cops were.
My wife and I saw police taking what looked, from a distance, like shotguns out of thier trunks, but it could have been those bean bag tossers they like so much.
OHSU Primate Center Researcher, Henry Urbanski, received a visit Friday evening by animal rights protestors. They informed the neighborhood with a short speech and rousing chants that their neighbor participates in the horror that is primate testing. One demonstrator rang the doorbell to inform Urbanski of the demonstration's purpose. After Urbanski realized the demonstrator was not selling anything, he asked the demonstrator to remain, while he retrieved his camera.
Thinking the better of it, the demonstrator returned to the street, soon after to be accosted by Urbanski, who immediately became physical with protestors in an attempt to get their photos. As activists attempted to leave the area, he pushed them, and even kicked one, trying to trip her. At one point, he slugged one protestor's jaw, showing that the cold heart that uses living creatures like test tubes is just as unconcerned about injuring fellow human beings.
Bystanders phoned the police. When they arrived, the protestors attempted to press charges. Instead the police informed them that if they returned they would be charged with stalking.
Other OHSU news: Person arrested at OHSU pleads not guilty
New Waveland Cafe Thursday, September 15, 2005:
Imagine a community that probably looks a lot like yours, it's banks and grocery stores sitting like hollow ghosts, monuments to nature's destructive power, their insides washed away in the tidal surge. The storm surge reached as high as 30 feet in this part of Mississippi. All the buildings around here were completely submerged in a fetid brew of saltwater, sewage, death, every toxic chemical, and the detritus of the land dwellers. The place is so toxic we use a case of bleach in the Cafe every day. Children should not be here but many have no choice.
I come from the Rainbow side of the Cafe. We call ourselves REMA, Rainbow Emergency Management Assembly. We're here to serve, listen, and inspire. We work 16-20 hour days and hope some more good volunteers show up soon. We just feed whoever shows up, give away everything in our Wall Less Mart (Where Everything is Free), and lend an ear when needed. I don't know how long we'll need to stay here; but a lot of folks absolutely depend on us.
The world forgot to notice that coastal Mississippi was annihilated by Katrina. The next town to the east of us, Bay St. Louis, lost 70% of its buildings. It looks like everything "below the railroad tracks" will be bulldozed and rebuilt. Recovery efforts were well under way by the time FEMA noticed that most of the buildings in coastal Mississippi were missing. We understand turf battles have severely slowed recovery efforts in Louisiana. We're not equipped to deal with politics. But we are equipped to feed and comfort these marvelous, ordinary folks like you and me living in a place not unlike your town, look them in the eye when they thank us, and reply, "You'd have done the same for us."
Friday night's (last night's) lecture by Thom Hartmann and Bob Fitrakis on the details of vote tampering in Ohio and its implications was great. Intelligent, well researched, engaged and well spoken speech from Fitrakis gave everyone the knowledge and determination we will need to address the serious problem of unverifiable votes and corruption in elections and its roots.
On my way to work this morning, I happened upon an all-too-familiar scene. Packs of white police officers hounding black men along the bus stops. Here's what I saw.
On the corner of SW 5th and Oak, three police cars and numerous white male police officers had one black man in handcuffs, and were stuffing him into a squad car when I walked by. People all along the street, waiting for their buses, watched impassively from the curb. The man being folded into the police car met my eyes with an expression of resignation. He was used to this, I imagine. A black man in a white world.
Many homes and buildings in New Orleans have been checked by special operations crews for both live and dead people and animals, but at the same time there are still numerous parts of the city that have yet to be checked. Surely more people will be found dead in their homes. An "X" is spray painted on homes and businesses that have been checked and each triangle of the "X" is used to document the number of people found, the date the location was searched, the military unit that checked the building and something else, but I'm not sure what the fourth region of the "X" is used for.
It is critical that people organize to (re)create a community that best reflects the values and traditions that makes people proud to call New Orleans their home. I'm talking about a close knit society with a vibrant music and arts community, good ol' southern home-cooking, respect, solidarity and mutual aid. Hopefully we see an improved school system, universal health care based on peoples' needs, media labs and instructors for all parts of New Orleans and the continuance of a community radio station in Algiers and stations for other neighborhoods.
All of us who value people over profit need to act fast. Capitalists have their own agenda for New Orleans. There are reports of plans to build a Walmart in the 9th ward. Construction contacts to rebuild the city are not being given to the people of New Orleans, they are going to multinational corporations who will, of course, exploit people.
Yesterday (sept 14th) contract climbers working for US Forest Service Law Enforcement and Lane Co. Sheriff's evicted 2 of the 3 tree-sits in Sten unit 43. One tree is still occupied. Active logging has begun within unit 43.
Today (sept 15th) USFS and Sheriff's Dept LEO's escorted fellers into the area of the two evicted tree-sits and found one tree had been reoccupied by an activist during the night. Law enforcement guarded loggers as they cut trees around the activist, who remains in the tree at last report. Two activists were arrested on the ground, both were charged with interfering with an agricultural operation. Another activist is remaining in the third tree-sit further down the hill that was not evicted yesterday.
[ Tree-sitter hit by arrow at Sten Tree-sit (13 Sept. '05) | Treesitters at Sten/McKenzie River still being shot at by loggers (7 Sept. '05) | Mckenzie Watershed: Tree-sitters and ground support shot at by loggers (30 Aug. '05) | Tree-sit action in Mckenzie Watershed defends forest from attack by Freres Lumber (23 Aug. '05) ]
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