PORTLAND, Or. – For those that have seen the coverage stemming from the rallies and counter-protests in Portland this past weekend, you know that the local police did an incredible job keeping opposing groups from each other, minimizing the usual clashes that so often occur within the city.
While these officers were keeping control within the city walls, angry protesters lashed out at them, jeering and heckling, pulling no punches with their words.
One video caught members of Antifa, decked out in their black gear and helmets, telling officers that they should kill themselves.
“Shoot yourselves!” one man can be seen saying. “Suicide is the only way out!”
While these are just the words of a cowardly ‘activist’, this only further shows the horrific way the counter-culture is treating the men and women who are sworn to protect our communities. The divide continues, and officers are paying the price.
“You know you’re a parasite,” the man continues in the onslaught of hate. “Last year more cops died by suicide than in the line of duty. It’s because you know your job is morally and ethically bankrupt.”
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The officers amazingly are able to stand guard with a straight face, refusing to lose their composure. Officer suicide is one of the most important topics within the world of law enforcement right now. We’re losing officers to their own hand because we haven’t given them the proper resources and support to battle their demons. And when they do seek help… they’re often turned away, or may even lose the career that they love so much.
In fact, police suicides are up nearly 25 percent in 2019, with 114 officers taking their own life as of August 1, according to ABC News. New York City just lost their ninth officer this year to his own hand. There is a clear epidemic in this area that needs to be addressed.
The hate continued…
“Don’t be upset that they don’t hire smart people,” another man from the crowd yells.
A video was captured showing the protesters taunting the officers. Watch below.
“Shoot yourselves. Suicide is the only way out!”
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) August 17, 2019
Another officer was taunted and called a ‘race traitor’ for being a part of law enforcement.
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) August 17, 2019
Another person spits at a line of cops as she walks past.
Person in dress crossing street who spat in the general direction of a cop van, then was singled out by one of the riot cops, only to be tackled to the ground moments later by 5 officers. #ThisIsAmerica #PortlandProtest #PortlandProtests #PoliceBrutality #PortlandPolice #PPB pic.twitter.com/WDdH8YK8BU
— queerflatsoda (@feefifofummmm) August 18, 2019
This rally was the first in recent history where Mayor Ted Wheeler actually empowered his local force to keep control over the city and keep it from turning into a war zone – a scene we’ve seen from Portland time and time again.
Amazingly, officers coordinated their efforts to keep Antifa members away from the free speech groups Patriot Prayer and Proud Boys throughout most of the day. Most of the groups stumbled around looking to confront the other, but were largely unsuccessful.
Police made a total of 13 arrests on Saturday.
— Gov. Gary Johnson (@GovGaryJohnson) August 19, 2019
The Portland Police Bureau released a statement ahead of the gathering noting that they would be ready for any criminal activity that was being planned.
“Based on publicly-available information, the Bureau is concerned events on August 17 may involve persons interested in participating in criminal activity.”
Chief Danielle Outlaw said that the violence that has previously taken over the streets of the west coast city won’t be tolerated this time around.
“There is concern about the criminal intentions being expressed in the publicly available forums which suggest some attendees plan to engage in violence,” PPB Chief Outlaw said. “We are taking this into account and developing an appropriate plan with adequate resources to prepare for this eventuality…. We will also be doing outreach to provide information to local businesses, residents, and visitors so they will know what to expect and the likely areas to be impacted.”
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Mayor Wheeler released a statement prior to the event in order to deter those wishing to commit violence.
“The City of Portland has proudly embraced the right to assembly and the right to free speech for generations.
Unfortunately, in recent years, extremists from across the political spectrum have used our city, our home to commit acts of violence while spreading their messages.
We have learned that on August 17th, groups plan on doing the same thing again.
Some, to spread hateful messages.
Some, with the explicit intent to commit violence.
In these politically-charged times, the stakes couldn’t be higher. This is why I continue to empower and direct the Portland Police Bureau to use whatever means necessary – and amass whatever resources necessary – to ensure public safety and to uphold the law.
This is the city I was born in. It’s the city I was raised in. It’s the city that I love. So hear me when I say this: The people who come to our beautiful city to commit acts of violence – and those who live here intent on doing the same – will be held accountable regardless of their political beliefs.
We have more resources, more partners, more coordination and greater resolve than ever before to back our unified message: Don’t spread hate and enact violence in Portland.
This is our city, this is our home.