The Peace Resource

Writing, Organizing, & Creative Arts

Laurie King challenges PDX City Hall!

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Laurie King


Many thanks to comrades who came to City Hall 
today to support my testimony that challenged the Mayor and Council members to be out on the streets with us on Sept 10th and to do what they can to publicize the Portland Stands United Against Hate rally and march!!

It was a challenge to me to get comments into three minutes. Whew. If you can, make some phone calls and write some emails to keep the pressure on them. I pasted on my testimony below.

Mayor Wheeler- 503-823-4120, mayorwheeler@portlandoregon.gov;
Chloe Eudaly,      503-823-4682, chloe@portlandoregon.gov;
Nick Fish,             503-823-3589, nick@portlandoregon.gov;
Amanda Fritz,    503-823-3008, amamda@portlandoregon.gov;
Dan Saltzman,    503-823-4151, dan@portlandoregon.gov

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Hall Testimony

On Sept 10th, Portland is slated yet again to be the site of a white supremacist event. Joey Gibson is mobilizing a “Portland Freedom March” featuring a prominent Confederate monument defender.

I believe, and many would agree, that as the people who were elected to be in charge of the City of Portland, you have an ethical obligation to clearly and definitively demonstrate that you are against white supremacy.

In the August 16th message from elected leaders in the Portland area, it is great that you all say that each of us can take a stand against racism.

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Two clear ways for you to take a stand against racism on September 10th are:

 

 


1. Join the Portland Stands United Against Hate Rally and March at Terry Shrunk Plaza at 1pm.
And, 2. Publicly encourage Portland residents to be at this protest and to come out in their thousands.

Get on the media!

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67 racist rallies were recently cancelled, not because people stayed home, or marched on a different day, or marched far away, but because people came out in overwhelming numbers, and were visible to those white supremacists.

 


I believe that it is critical for you all to show, by your public actions, which side you are on because at this point , Joey Gibson and other white supremacists feel ALL TOO COMFORTABLE in our city. Just a few of the things that I’m sure they’ve noticed:

– On May 25th, the night before the racial assaults and murders on the MAX by Jeremy Christian, an African American women was attacked by Christian. The police officer who arrived at the scene did not apprehend him. Imagine if this woman were white and Christian were black.

cbd6fa31e1dacf6df040eafaadc3e158On May 26th after having stabbed two heroes to death, police officers let Christian keep ranting and drinking a beer before arresting him. Again, imagine if Christian were black.

– The double standards are all too clear. On May Day and at the June protest against white supremacists, peaceful participants were met by militarized police in riot gear with concussion grenades and more. Hundreds of May Day participants had their free speech curtailed in collective punishment. On June 4th, anti-white supremacists were rounded up and forced to have their IDs recorded before they could leave Chapman Square, while nothing like this happened to the white supremacists, whose free speech was assiduously protected by police.

On the positive side, many of us noticed that the Aug. 18th Eclipse Hate Rally and March was not met with militarized police. And, it worked well!

Will you join the Portland Stands United Against Hate Rally that is endorsed by more laurieking2than 35 groups, including the Portland Association of Teachers, SEIU 503 E-Board, SEIU 49, Voz, Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon and Main St. Alliance? Will you use your bully pulpit to help make Portland like Boston!

We all can and must do our parts!

Would the people who agree with me stand or raise hands?

We’d love to hear your responses, or let us know when you can get back with us. I am submitting a long list of organizations that have so far endorsed the Portland Stands United Against Hate Rally and March.

 

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