PORTLAND, OR – Portland continues to make headlines across the nation as a hotbed of ongoing protests happen over and over again.
This time, those headlines are due to two new resolutions that were introduced by Commissioner Chloe Eudaly on Wednesday. These new resolutions were unanimously endorsed by the Portland City Council, while the riots in the city continue to rage on.
These resolutions call for a ban on local police working with federal officers, as well as adding protection for journalists covering the ongoing riots which continue to plague the efforts of law enforcement to curtail the violence throughout the city.
— American City & County (@AmerCityCounty) July 23, 2020
Speaking out about the resolution that she presented to City Council, Commissioner Eudaly chastised the Trump administration saying:
“Not only is the Trump administration violating the constitutional rights of Portlanders, but they are also attempting to use Portland as a proving ground for fascism, and they plan to invade cities across the country, cities that are political targets of the President.”
Portland’s Mayor, Ted Wheeler also voted in favor of the move to curb cooperation between local law enforcement and the federal agents, or “federal occupiers,” as he calls them, that have been deployed to assist them in regaining control over the city.
Portland City Council unanimously passed these resolutions on the same day that Mayor Wheeler was teargassed by federal officers as he was speaking in a crowd of protesters.
New York Times correspondent Mike Baker posted a video of Mayor Wheeler describing how the effects of the tear gas felt.
“I’m not going to lie, it stings, it’s hard to breathe, and I can tell you with 100% honesty, I saw nothing which provoked this response.”
Portland City Council Commissioner Chloe Eudaly blasted federal officers, calling their presence a “violent federal paramilitary occupation” https://t.co/5VRmcRWlKC
— KOIN News (@KOINNews) July 21, 2020
Mayor Wheeler claimed he was “not afraid” while being sprayed with the tear gas, but that he was simply “pissed off” at the response of the officers.
Mayor Wheeler also accused the officers of participating in “urban warfare” after he had been teargassed. In a News Week article, Mayor Wheeler stated in reference to the federal agents deploying teargas into the crowds of protesters:
“This is not a de-escalation strategy. This is flat out urban warfare and it’s being wrought upon the people of this country by the President of the United States and it’s got to stop right now. This is a threat to our democracy.”
When Mayor Wheeler approached the protesters on Wednesday to attempt to have a “listening session,” the Portland citizens berated him, yelling “f**ck Ted Wheeler” and called for his resignation.
Speaking to a crowd of approximately 2,000 protesters, Mayor Wheeler took that time to voice his opinion on the opposition of the Trump Administration.
“To the federal occupiers — you’re not welcome here. You have done nothing but escalate tensions and harm our community members. We can handle our revolution ourselves. Go home,” City Commissioner Chloe Eudaly said in a statement Monday. https://t.co/kvOX4Zvan3
— PBS NewsHour (@NewsHour) July 22, 2020
In his speech during the “listening session,” Mayor Wheeler made reference to the federal officers deployed throughout the city of Portland.
“It is an unconstitutional occupation. The tactics that are being used by our federal officers are abhorrent, they do not act with probable cause, people are not being told who they are being arrested by, and they’re being denied basic constitutional rights.”
Throughout the speech, protesters appeared to throw objects at the Mayor. One of the rioters was witnessed dumping a bag of what appeared to be tear gas cannisters at the feet of Mayor Wheeler right before he began his talk.
The majority of the crowd ignored what the Mayor had to say. The rioters proceeded to shout, chant and jeer during the Mayor’s session, and several protesters took the opportunity to project a list of four demands onto the all of a nearby building.
Among the list was a demand to reduce the Portland Police Department by at least 50%, the release of all protesters currently incarcerated in the city jail, and the resignation of Mayor Wheeler.
Commissioner Chloe Eudaly To Introduce Rule Instructing Portland Police To Stop Cooperating With Federal Officers . News | OPB https://t.co/u7EqyDZqqK
— Ethlyn Vogler (@ev3ponies) July 22, 2020
Mayor Wheeler has made it well known that he has been opposed to President Trump and his administration deploying federal officers to the city of Portland since their arrival in early June.
He also continues to speak out to the citizens that he and the City Council will continue to do everything in their power to block any federal agents that are sent by President Trump administration to assist the local police in taking control back from the nightly riots.
With all that said, and with him yelling and posting to social media “Black Lives Matter,” what else do these people want?
They aren’t happy with the left, they certainly aren’t happy with the right…it’s almost as if they have a completely different set of beliefs that call for the dismantling of the America we know and love, of the Democracy on which she was founded.
You know, like Marxism.
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Here’s more from Law Enforcement Today on the threat of Marxism and Black Lives Matter.
Fox News host Mark Levin recently sat down with economist Thomas Sowell and discussed the hot topic of systematic racism in America.
Sowell, who joined Levin on his show “Life, Liberty & Levin,” revealed the meaning behind the idea of systematic racism.
“You hear this phrase, ‘systemic racism’ [or] ‘systemic oppression.’ You hear it on our college campuses…what does it mean? And whatever it means, is it true?”
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) July 12, 2020
Sowell, who is a National Humanities Medal-winning scholar, pulled no punches.
“It really has no meaning that can be specified and tested in the way that one tests hypotheses.”
Taking a page out of the liberal playbook, Sowell equated the phrase to something reminiscent of Nazi propaganda:
“It does remind me of the propaganda tactics of Joseph Goebbels during the age of the Nazis. It’s one of many words that I don’t think even the people who use it have any clear idea what they’re saying.
“Their purpose served is to have other people cave in.”
Conservative African American economist Thomas Sowell says that the term “systemic racism,” which is central to the Black Lives Matter movement, has “no meaning.” https://t.co/Jky7nnzpww
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) July 12, 2020
The topic of conversation then turned to leftists in America, and their growing calls for more socialist policies.
“They’re absolute hypocrites They claim they want equality for all. They claim that there’ll be the withering away of the state, the police departments, reimagined law enforcement … and yet every time you look at a Marxist state, it is an authoritarian, top-down, centralized police state.”
Regular followers of Levin’s show are already familiar with Sowell. In an interview on Levin’s radio show on June 29, Sowell also discussed systemic racism and the rise in socialist beliefs.
Sowell, who formerly identified as a Marxist in his youth, told Levin:
“The Left has the better vision; it’s only when you turn from the vision to facts that suddenly everything collapses like a house of cards.
“I think many, if not most, of the people in the movement that created the Soviet Union were probably idealists wanting a better world. They had no idea what kind of world they were in fact creating.”
ALL races have been slaves and also have profited from slavery everywhere and sometime in history.
This is a human problem and not a racial one.
Following this course will only lead to the estrangement of humanity itself.
Here, Thomas Sowell… pic.twitter.com/Ennf307fVf
— carey g. butler (@Heurist) July 13, 2020
Levin also asked about the meaning behind the left’s protests against systemic racism.
“I have no idea what they mean. And I’m not sure they have any idea what they mean, in the sense that you can ask them a factual question and get a factual answer.”
As can be expected, the two men also discussed the 2020 election, and what America under a President Biden would look like.
After Levin told Sowell that he believes this election could be one of the most important in history, Sowell responded:
“[It] could well be the point of no return for this country.”
Sowell also revealed details about his new book, Charter Schools and Their Enemies, in which he discusses how minority communities are most often the ones that get hurt by opposition to charter schools.
What is even more astonishing is that charter schools are being opposed, not only by teachers' unions who think that schools exist to provide guaranteed jobs for their members, but also by politicians, including black politicians who loudly proclaim that "black lives matter."
— Thomas Sowell (@ThomasSowell) July 12, 2020
This is not Sowell’s first book on perceived racial disparity within schools. In his 2004 book, Affirmative Action Around the World: An Empirical Study, Sowell asserts that affirmative action is a harmful practice.
In this book, he wrote:
“One of the few policies that can be said to harm virtually every group in a different way.
Obviously, whites and Asians lose out when you have preferential admission for black students or Hispanic students — but blacks and Hispanics lose out because what typically happens is the students who have all the credentials to succeed in college are admitted to colleges where the standards are so much higher that they fail.”
Sowell’s interview comes on the heels of an increase in criticism by prominent members of the black community against the Black Lives Matter movement.
To dig even deeper, here’s more on Marxism and the danger it poses to America.
For those of us who work in communities with people from different ethnic backgrounds and who find this experience to be both rewarding and a privilege, we are deeply frustrated and saddened to see the attack on Western civilization (and by extension, our Judeo-Christian heritage) by certain groups of the radical-left during recent and ongoing George Floyd protests.
It is important now that those of us who wish to hold on to liberal democracy speak up about the rise of the radical left and the spell that it has cast on liberal and religious intuitions and popular culture.
What is also worrying is the response of much of the media. It was difficult to find a media outlet which was willing to criticize the actions of those who perpetrated violence on police, emergency services, and the public after the initial protests.
The initial and ongoing protests have largely been peaceful, and this is to be welcomed.
However, under the guise of racism and identity politics, the actions of radical groups like Black Lives Matter and Antifa have begun to destabilize Western society. This is not an over-statement. BLM has, it seems, a not insignificant amount of support among the public and the mainstream media. But do they deserve that support?
Who is BLM?
It is important to remember that not all BLM supporters hold radical left beliefs. And while there are some laudable aspects to BLM’s aims – for example, equality of opportunity – there is much that is concerning, also.
Its mission statement is laudable too: Black Lives Matter (BLM) is an international human rights movement, originating from within the African American community, which campaigns against violence and systemic racism towards black people.
As a group, BLM has every right to make such statements as freedom of expression is something, we in the West hold dear.
Ironically, freedom of speech is one of the things which BLM clearly rails against because at its heart it is a communist organization and embraces one of the key tenets of Marxism: Group think.
But how many people realize how far left, as an organization, BLM is? If you do not consider BLM to be a radical left-wing group and, therefore, a threat to Western society, then look at its website. On it you will see how it supports the abolition of the nuclear family (as in the modern Western family), the abolition of capitalism, the abolition of state structures, and the abolition of the police.
And the virtue signaling and groveling which their movement has demanded is seeping its way into our culture at an alarming rate. Television shows across America and England, some years old, are being cancelled, erased from history.
Liberal institutions and the corporate world have been doing all they can to show how “woke” they are in their support of BLM. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has given the all clear for a “Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm,” which, sounds very Maoist, indeed.
This “commission” has been set up to allow for the systematic eradication of history, one, which will no doubt, satisfy the mob. This is the radical left tyranny of the now, where everything must conform to absolutely everything else. But it is important to remember that history is not like this.
We can, for example, look to both Gandhi and Mohammed: Gandhi was racist and Mohammed was a slave owner. But we do not usually castigate them for their beliefs because we accept that they were living in different times. We do, however, find their beliefs untenable today.
The communist principles of BLM go directly against the foundational principles of Western liberal democracy, two thousand years in the making. This is further evidence that BLM is a radical Marxist organization.
It wants to, and will continue to want, more than just equality of opportunity and an end to racism. It wishes to usher in a radically socialist new world order.
A new world order overseen by a one-party state. And as we have recently seen, its actions directly threaten law and order, civility, and free speech here in the West.
According to Inaya Folarin Iman:
“Black lives matter [and Antifa] have created an over-arching narrative of universal black experience, which, according to them, is one of oppression and racism.
But, when you look at the empirical evidence and you speak to black people, it does not stack up to the reality of what these radical left activists are saying.”
Coming from a black female activist, this is telling. Therefore, a mythology of disproportion has been created by these radical movements and is supported wholeheartedly by the mainstream media and social media, both left leaning in their politics and sympathies.
Law and order:
Radical left movements have a long history of undermining law and order. And what the recent BLM protests and riots have shown is that the police are in a difficult situation. If they respond with force, they are accused of brutality. If they “sit back,” as they did in many US cities, anarchy ensues.
The police as an “enemy of the people” was compounded by the mainstream media’s coverage of the riots from the perspective of the rioters. There was hardly any mention of the violence which was perpetrated on police by protesters.
But, according to left-wing academics, left-wing politicians, and left-wing celebrities, the looting, the damaging of property, and the injuring of police and the public is now legitimate. What is more, violence is not violence anymore.
It is called “effusive action.”
There is much in this life that aggrieves and greatly offends us, but, in liberal democracies one is not expected to go around committing violent acts to get what one wants.
What is more worrying in many ways is how language itself has been hijacked by the radical left, to the extent that words themselves can be violence. Even not using certain words is violence.
The virtue signaling on the left by politicians and celebrities and the over-used and much of the time nonsensical idea of “white privilege” is, frankly, becoming very counter-productive and may even incite further violence in our communities.
However, these concepts have captivated a large part of the establishment’s and public’s consciousness. The radical left, through the prism of identity politics, have been saying, “If we say it is, then it is. And you have to shut up.”
As alluded to above, not voicing an opinion is now a hate crime. This is one of the more sinister incarnations of intimidation from the radical left. Phrases such as “silence is violence” have become mantras. This is truly Orwellian – 1984 incarnate.
While never wanting to incite racial tension, it is important to look at the facts and stand back from the emotion of the current situation with some objectivity.
The Bureau of Justice’s Statistics in America Interracial Victimizations Between Blacks and Whites (2018) makes for very interesting reading, particularly in the light of the current mass hysteria over the killing of Floyd.
Homicide excluded, there were a total of 593, 598 violent incidences between blacks and whites in 2018. Of this total, blacks committed approximately 90% (537,204) of the crimes while whites committed less than 10% (56, 394).
The beatification of George Floyd has now been endorsed by the mainstream media and has been encouraged by all that are woke. He is, arguably, the first saint of the Church of Identity Politics.
The tearing down of statues and the defacing of monuments which has come in the wake of his killing is very worrying. Some of these statues represent complex issues, but lawlessness is not the way to redress the past.
All around Europe and in America the press, politicians, legislators, celebrities, and many in between, have vilified the police and policing.
In England in recent years, a policy of “negotiation” was developed by police to deal with violent protesters. Subsequent policing at demonstrations and protests has turned into a farce with the police “negotiating” with thugs and aggressors.
Recently, police in England were forced to run away from violent BLM protestors in London. In doing so, many were kicked up the backside as they fled. This is very worrying for policing and law and order in England.
Police in England, America, and across Europe have been seen at Gay Pride parades wearing rainbow symbols and lanyards.
This is a mistake. Police should not make themselves part of any demonstration or celebration. They should not be seen to be political. Police present at demonstrations or celebrations are not there to have a “good time,” but to keep the public safe.
Additionally, there is an element of hypocrisy in the BLM movement. If they are so concerned with black lives, then why do they not protest about the disproportionate number of killings by black people on other black people?
Why are they so fixated on killings of black people by white people and not vice versa?
Why does not BLM protest about modern day slavery? It is ironic to see many of their supporters wearing Nike and Adidas clothing, clothing which is made in the sweatshops of the world. No doubt Nike and Adidas will soon give their support to BLM.
Giving support to an organization that wishes to promote equality of opportunity and further social justice is noble. But, that must be promoted for all.
How do we stand up to the radical left?
Ever since the cultural and sexual revolution in the 1960’s, traditional western values have been under severe pressure.
The disintegration of the Western family because of divorce, the addiction to drugs and alcohol, the pressure of the welfare system (which is abused by many), and the relatively new phenomenon in the market place of competitive victimhood, has meant that the west is suffering an existential crisis.
This has been further enhanced by mass immigration from sub-Saharan Africa and the middle east.
Even the shock experienced by families and people from the draconian Covid 19 “lockdown,” with its looming culture of the “new normal” has greatly weakened the social, cultural, political and spiritual confidence of the western man and woman and family.
So, to fight against the tyranny which the radical left is imposing on the West, it might be helpful if we somehow reset ourselves and remind ourselves of the Judeo-Christian understanding of the individual.
According to Larry Siedentop, it is this understanding which “gave birth to the European individual.”
It gave birth to the “I” as part of the “we,” but separate from it, also.
This understanding says that the individual is sovereign in his and her own right: fully part of society, but fully apart also with the grace that comes from exercising one’s God-given free-will.
This is the complete opposite to the Marxist understanding of the individual in society. In Marxist society, the “we” takes precedence over the “I,” and destruction follows.
Written by Alex McKillican
Alex McKillican is a GRACE Project Scholarship PhD student with Mary Immaculate College, Limerick City, Ireland. He holds a BA in History, Politics and Social Studies and an MA (Education) from the University of Limerick. His current research aims to integrate Christian anthropology with adult education. He teaches on various adult education programmes in his community.
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