Pictured above, was a Portland protest on June 2, 2020 in light of George Floyd’s merciless killing. Images such as these have been seen not only in American cities, but around the globe as people protest on police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement. In a historic move to curb largely peaceful demonstrations, President Donald Trump called in the National Guard but to a supposed no end. As family and friends of George Floyd seek justice in the courts following his emotional funeral, the streets supposedly went quiet.
But in Portland, Oregon, the city is still ablaze and although the last 66 straight days have predominately been peaceful during the day, the arrival of federal law enforcement fuelled tensions among the community at night. Last week, Portland mayor Ted Wheeler condemned the acts of law enforcement after he was also the victim of tear gassing, calling it an “egregious over-reaction”.
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While the protests begun in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, it has quickly turned into engrossed anger towards Donald Trump and his administration. On July 4, Trump sent in forces to protect political statues with citizens believing it was an attempt by the U.S. Government to occupy the city. Protestors are demanding that federal enforcement be removed from Portland.
More flag burning at the antifa/ BLM gathering in downtown Portland. Video by @FromKalen. #PortlandRiots pic.twitter.com/okngG7eRYK
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) August 1, 2020
This past weekend has seen a calming across the city after officials backed off police and federal troops, but while the epicentre of the protests, the courthouse, is at times quiet there is no apparent end in sight according to reports. Public officials and the people of Portland are still fighting racism and police brutality within the city. City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty and U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D) are urging people to use the voting system to make political change.
“The next thing we need you to do is vote like your life depends on it, because guess what, it does,” Hardesty told the crowd at an event on Saturday evening.
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The 2020 United States presidential election is scheduled for Tuesday, November 3, 2020 although Donald Trump is attempting to delay the election over alleged fraud concerns. This weekend however, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy both dismissed the idea. “Never in the history of this country, through wars, depressions and the Civil War, have we ever not had a federally scheduled election on time. We will find a way to do that again this November third,” he told local Kentucky station WNKY.
Stay tuned for further developments on the riots in Portland.
Tile image: Instagram @medziue