6 votes

Protesters in Portland and Seattle shatter windows and light fires

Topic removed by site admin
This topic is locked. New comments can not be posted.

29 comments

  1. [2]
    Douglas
    Link
    Just gonna say what others might not know: The protests have always had "bad apples" (to steal our PPD's terminology) in the crowd bashing windows and lighting fires. When my wife and I marched...

    Just gonna say what others might not know:

    The protests have always had "bad apples" (to steal our PPD's terminology) in the crowd bashing windows and lighting fires.

    When my wife and I marched for Floyd back in the Spring, we went from a NE park to the Police Department and people were bashing windows of insurance centers, Starbucks, Nike, Burgerville (for being anti-union), and most banks that we passed by. People did step in to try and stop them every now and then-- especially when it was almost about to happen to more local businesses, but people generally kept on moving like myself. I guiltily admit I'd hear a window bash, look to see it was Bank of America and think "...meh...fuck Bank of America."

    We did bail when the protestors got to the Police Department because A) That's where the flyer said the march would end and B) Nobody was really doing anything/giving any speeches/calls to action (those were at the beginning) except starting fires and destruction, which... isn't what we signed up for.

    We stopped attending the protests lately after my wife got a retail job/it'd feel irresponsible to go to them and then to work interacting with a bunch of old folks, but whenever I see articles like this where the headlines just reads off property damage and omits the protest cause, I can't help but take the news with a grain of salt.

    ...then again, I don't really agree quite yet with the anger the protestors have already cast on Biden. I'm ready to critique him just as much as the next person, and I don't have high (or any) expectations from him on these protestors, but it's been one day, and calling him out right now just feels like it's asking for ridicule.

    8 votes
    1. NaraVara
      Link Parent
      Portland, in particular, seems to have kind of a toxic stew of a really racist police force (even by police force standards), open fascist militia types, and extremely confrontational anarchist...

      Portland, in particular, seems to have kind of a toxic stew of a really racist police force (even by police force standards), open fascist militia types, and extremely confrontational anarchist protestor types. It really seems like the city has an above average number of people who simply don't buy into the legitimacy of the political system. That's bound to be a powder-keg. I'd say the blame probably lies largely with the municipal government for not doing a better job of giving these disaffected youths something better to do.

      5 votes
  2. [2]
    knocklessmonster
    Link
    I get that Biden's not a radical, and probably the most progressive stuff that he'll be directly responsible for will be undoing a lot of Trump stuff, but I wouldn't even say Biden having his...

    I get that Biden's not a radical, and probably the most progressive stuff that he'll be directly responsible for will be undoing a lot of Trump stuff, but I wouldn't even say Biden having his first day in office should be a thing to push for protests (other stuff will be from him "reading the room" as it were and putting the right people in various positions). I can get a general protest to draw attention, but some of this seems to be "He's not radical enough." Obviously he isn't, he's the dude who won the Democratic Party nomination.

    I can definitely accept that the worst of it was either people who are very extreme in their thinking, or just rioters in the sense that they'll attach themselves to a large group of people to get away with it because these protests are for social justice,, and honestly way more likely to just be the latter than any of the former. It sort of sucks that it basically happened before Biden had enough time to actually do anything significant.

    6 votes
    1. [2]
      Comment deleted by author
      Link Parent
      1. RusticGiraffe
        Link Parent
        +1. Biden was elected thanks to POCs, and we're responsible for making sure he upholds his duty to them. That means defunding the police and abolishing ICE.

        +1. Biden was elected thanks to POCs, and we're responsible for making sure he upholds his duty to them.
        That means defunding the police and abolishing ICE.

        5 votes
  3. [17]
    streblo
    Link
    About the only reason to engage in property damage on Day 1 of the Biden administration is if you don't want to him to succeed at all. If you'd rather be able to point the finger at a liberal than...

    About the only reason to engage in property damage on Day 1 of the Biden administration is if you don't want to him to succeed at all. If you'd rather be able to point the finger at a liberal than potentially watch them pass progressive policy you're not actually progressive you're just an accelerationist.

    5 votes
    1. [10]
      Comment deleted by author
      Link Parent
      1. stu2b50
        Link Parent
        In the spirit of the other thread on politics on tildes, I can already sense that this is could be the spawn of another long-winded thread and will commit to this being the last I'll input on it....

        In the spirit of the other thread on politics on tildes, I can already sense that this is could be the spawn of another long-winded thread and will commit to this being the last I'll input on it.

        But I think that's a somewhat ridiculous take. From the actions of this administration and the policies they put forward, this seems to be the most leftward Democratic, and thereby American, administration we've ever had on just about every axis. Immigration - Biden pledged to halt the deportations that marred the Obama years. Economic - Biden is pushing for some of the largest spending bills since the new deal, and is also in support of deficit spending, again unlike the Obama admin which spent much effort on balancing the budget. He also had by far the Greenest platform of any administration so far.

        And yes, perhaps that is a low bar to cross, but this quick condemnation just seems counterproductive. And in a world where the UK is led by Boris, Brazil is run by Bolsanaro, Poland is run by the PiS, etc. not to mention Russia, or China, I have a hard time agreeing about this administration compared to the rest of the world.

        8 votes
      2. [7]
        NaraVara
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        This is honestly something you could only say if you spend zero time looking into the politics of anywhere else in the world. It's shockingly lacking in perspective. You'd be hard pressed to call...

        imperialist rightist authoritarian by the standards of just about anywhere else in the world

        This is honestly something you could only say if you spend zero time looking into the politics of anywhere else in the world. It's shockingly lacking in perspective.

        You'd be hard pressed to call Biden a more "imperialist, rightist authoritarian" than just about any one of the United States' peer competitors on the international stage. The only countries that are to the left of the US on 'imperialism' are the NATO members who can afford the luxury due to having outsourced all their military obligations to the US hegemon. (And this includes when we had Trump in charge, an actual rightist authoritarian, due to the constraints maintained on him by the political system. He could do the damage he did by violating the trust the international community has invested in the United States, but largely failed at executing on any actual imperialist program aside from being a huge dick to refugees wherever he could).

        Yeah we don't have universal healthcare. That's one policy program. That's not the measure of what being an "imperialist, rightist authoritarian" is.

        6 votes
        1. [5]
          RusticGiraffe
          Link Parent
          Here's a great 20 minute documentary on YouTube about Biden's imperialism, voiced by Danny Glover: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vhcuei8_UJM

          Here's a great 20 minute documentary on YouTube about Biden's imperialism, voiced by Danny Glover:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vhcuei8_UJM

          3 votes
          1. [4]
            NaraVara
            Link Parent
            Seems weird to put a George Bush policy priority as evidence of Joe Biden's imperialism no? Almost like someone has an axe to grind and is cherry picking things without any historical context to...

            Seems weird to put a George Bush policy priority as evidence of Joe Biden's imperialism no? Almost like someone has an axe to grind and is cherry picking things without any historical context to justify putting together a hit piece.

            I get very frustrated when people try to give me "citations" for conclusions that are inevitably some fly-by-night youtuber, a self-published "documentary," or some no-name blogger or podcaster. These aren't valid sources. These are people with agendas who are skewing facts to make a narrative. It's honestly hard to have real, informed discussions about history or politics if this is the basis people are working with for their understanding of the world.

            Just for a little crumb of context, voting against the Iraq war after 9/11 was literally political suicide. It's hardly a Joe Biden thing and more of a "The US went insane after 9/11 and the media successfully bullied politicians across the spectrum into having to support it." A "documentary" that doesn't mention any of that isn't something that's interested in educating or informing you about what happened so much as something trying to make you hate Joe Biden because reasons. In the Obama cabinet Biden was usually the lone voice arguing against intervention and insisting on limiting engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan. It was, more often than not, Hillary Clinton who pushed for expanding our involvement and we didn't start to slow our roll on that until John Kerry replaced her.

            5 votes
            1. RusticGiraffe
              Link Parent
              Bernie Sanders voted against the Iraq War and he's still a national politician as far as I can tell. Stop carrying water for war criminals.

              Bernie Sanders voted against the Iraq War and he's still a national politician as far as I can tell.

              Stop carrying water for war criminals.

              2 votes
            2. [2]
              spit-evil-olive-tips
              Link Parent
              This is flat-out not true. Just to pick a few examples, Bernie Sanders voted against it, and his political career certainly didn't end in 2002. He was in the House at the time, and after that vote...

              Just for a little crumb of context, voting against the Iraq war after 9/11 was literally political suicide

              This is flat-out not true.

              Just to pick a few examples, Bernie Sanders voted against it, and his political career certainly didn't end in 2002. He was in the House at the time, and after that vote he went on to get elected Senator.

              Of my two Senators, Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, one voted for it and one voted against it. Both are still in office. Murray voted against it, and that was not an impediment to her serving as the chair of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee from 2011 to 2013. Her successor after that...was Bernie Sanders.

              2 votes
              1. NaraVara
                Link Parent
                Pointing out a bunch of small state and solidly safe Democratic districts isn't really strong evidence for your case. You're just pointing out people who were in good enough health to survive a...

                Pointing out a bunch of small state and solidly safe Democratic districts isn't really strong evidence for your case. You're just pointing out people who were in good enough health to survive a suicide attempt.

                It's also hindsight logic. At the time of the authorization, it wasn't known that the whole thing would be an incompetently managed clusterfuck, which is a big part of what vindicated those who opposed the war. If the second war went like the first war in Iraq, which was the most recent political event politicians in 2002 had to go on, all those competitive seat Dems would have been wiped out and not one of them would have had a shot at the Presidency.

                2 votes
        2. [2]
          Comment deleted by author
          Link Parent
          1. NaraVara
            Link Parent
            Scale doesn't matter here. They can't do it at US scale because they're militarily too weak and because the international community, writ large, doesn't trust them to work as an honest broker the...

            but who is actively working to violently enforce their will on other nations right now at a similar scale to the US?

            Scale doesn't matter here. They can't do it at US scale because they're militarily too weak and because the international community, writ large, doesn't trust them to work as an honest broker the way they trust the US. Their lack of scale says nothing about their goals or intent. China and Russia aren't not-imperialist for lack of trying.

            This is because the US remains the undisputed global hegemon that is frequently compelled to act on behalf of a network of liberal, internationalist institutions that weakly attempt to maintain a sense of world international consensus. This is true for good and bad. The same way the US uses its military to skew things in favor of its geo-strategic objectives, it also exercises international leadership to shepherd coordination and collaboration. Thanks to Trump we have natural experiments to bear this out. Obama did not neglect this responsibility and both SARS epidemics and Ebola were fairly well contained. Trump neglected it and we have a clusterfuck of a wideranging pandemic that propagated in the leadership vacuum.

            2 votes
      3. streblo
        Link Parent
        I certainly don't feel this way. I do think the Left is shamefully underrepresented in the USA but someone like Biden easily fits into most centrist/liberal governments around the world. He's...

        he's already proven himself to be an imperialist rightist authoritarian by the standards of just about anywhere else in the world

        I certainly don't feel this way. I do think the Left is shamefully underrepresented in the USA but someone like Biden easily fits into most centrist/liberal governments around the world. He's already cancelled Keystone XL, which one could argue puts him left of Trudeau on climate. I don't think anyone credible would go around calling Trudeau an "imperialist rightist authoritarian by the standards of just about anywhere else in the world".

        The protesters here are people who feel deeply disenfranchised, because they are.

        That can be true but being disenfranchised is not a justification for physical violence or intimidation. The Capitol rioters also felt disenfranchised. (I'm aware the comparison is wildly imbalanced). To reform a system you need to participate in it. Cheering on or participating in the erosion of institutions in hopes for something better is a) woefully misguided and b) ineffective.

        3 votes
    2. [7]
      Whom
      Link Parent
      Biden has been a notable figure in US politics for half a century, I don't think we need to wait and see before knowing what he's all about. Sure I want him to do good things, but we all know his...

      Biden has been a notable figure in US politics for half a century, I don't think we need to wait and see before knowing what he's all about.

      Sure I want him to do good things, but we all know his thing damn well and regardless of any of that...people are still suffering. Property damage in protest of the US's many atrocities is always justifiable, and I'm glad to see people out there reminding the country that none of our core issues go away with Trump gone.

      3 votes
      1. [6]
        streblo
        Link Parent
        You realize this is carte blanche justification for everyone anywhere to participate in property damage? When it comes to people's feelings and the law we can't just say we'll sure I guess if you...

        Property damage in protest of the US's many atrocities is always justifiable

        You realize this is carte blanche justification for everyone anywhere to participate in property damage? When it comes to people's feelings and the law we can't just say we'll sure I guess if you feel strongly enough about it it's OK.

        4 votes
        1. [4]
          RusticGiraffe
          Link Parent
          It's property. POC lives are being harmed every day that ICE continues existing and the police isn't defunded.

          It's property. POC lives are being harmed every day that ICE continues existing and the police isn't defunded.

          3 votes
          1. [3]
            streblo
            Link Parent
            I can guarantee you that 'defunding' the police (in the strict sense of the word, not the liberal 'sanewashed' version) will harm more people than it helps. Anyways, not interested in investing my...

            I can guarantee you that 'defunding' the police (in the strict sense of the word, not the liberal 'sanewashed' version) will harm more people than it helps.

            Anyways, not interested in investing my time in a big circular argument here so this is my last comment in this doomed thread.

            2 votes
            1. [3]
              Comment deleted by author
              Link Parent
              1. Whom
                Link Parent
                Slow violence has the incredible political advantage of not registering as violence to most people :/

                Slow violence has the incredible political advantage of not registering as violence to most people :/

                4 votes
              2. streblo
                Link Parent
                I'm only replying once more to this thread because I feel like this is egregious to the point that it's done in bad faith. (And I say that as someone who enjoys reading your opinions.) Please,...

                I'm only replying once more to this thread because I feel like this is egregious to the point that it's done in bad faith. (And I say that as someone who enjoys reading your opinions.) Please, please don't put words in my mouth.

                just trust the system whose agents extrajudicially murder people

                I'm not saying do nothing. You can generate tons of perfectly legal political pressure without resorting to violence. Protesting, striking, getting people elected -- there are plenty of options to address this without destroying stuff. The sad thing too is that for people who really care about this stuff -- is that it would be way more effective!

                2 votes
        2. Whom
          Link Parent
          This is only true if you don't put any weight in the validity of the reasons. If you treat everything in terms of what an individual thinks of themselves, then sure, but that's a way of thinking...

          This is only true if you don't put any weight in the validity of the reasons. If you treat everything in terms of what an individual thinks of themselves, then sure, but that's a way of thinking that writes off any effective action because "the bad guys can do it too!"

          The law may have to try to be neutral and count two protests to opposite things as the same as long as the tactics are the same, but refusing to recognize the difference on an individual level is just willfully ignoring context and reality. These protestors are justified because they are right. Not because they think they are right, but because they are right.

          3 votes
  4. spit-evil-olive-tips
    Link
    Media Criticism Corner: Interesting dichotomy between the title as scraped from the <meta> tags - "Hours After Biden Inauguration, Federal Agents Use Tear Gas in Portland" and the headline as it...
    • Exemplary

    Media Criticism Corner:

    Interesting dichotomy between the title as scraped from the <meta> tags - "Hours After Biden Inauguration, Federal Agents Use Tear Gas in Portland" and the headline as it actually appears in the NYT - "Protesters in Portland and Seattle Shatter Windows and Light Fires".

    As is often the case, the focus is put on violence committed by civilians against inanimate objects, and violence committed by the state against civilians is de-emphasized.

    Both forms of violence are often indiscriminately targeted. That specific Starbucks window didn't lock any immigrant children in cages. And police use of chemical weapons like tear gas is inherently indiscriminate (which is why its use is banned, at least in theory, in "normal" warfare). When police deploy enough of it, it not only affects bystanders at the protest indiscriminately, it also seeps into nearby houses.

    This is a choice the media makes. It's not always a conscious, deliberate choice, but it is a choice.

    3 votes
  5. [6]
    Akir
    Link
    Aaaaaand the right is already blaming it on Antifa. I was just on r/conservative and there are precisely zero people (who haven't been downvoted out of context) questioning this assertion whatsoever.

    Aaaaaand the right is already blaming it on Antifa.

    I was just on r/conservative and there are precisely zero people (who haven't been downvoted out of context) questioning this assertion whatsoever.

    3 votes
    1. [5]
      stu2b50
      Link Parent
      I mean in this case isn't it actually done by "antifa"?

      I mean in this case isn't it actually done by "antifa"?

      [Protesters] marched through the streets and burned an American flag on Wednesday in a strident challenge by antifascist and racial-justice protesters to the new administration of President Biden, whose promised reforms, they declared, “won’t save us.”

      6 votes
      1. [3]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. [2]
          stu2b50
          Link Parent
          But they do have images of the protestors and I can't imagine it being conservatives unless it's a "false flag" but there's no evidence for that.

          But they do have images of the protestors and I can't imagine it being conservatives unless it's a "false flag" but there's no evidence for that.

          3 votes
          1. [2]
            Comment deleted by author
            Link Parent
            1. stu2b50
              Link Parent
              Hm, yeah, certainly the /r/conservative conception of "ANTIFA" as this unified, paramilitary group akin to the militia movement in the right but apparently simultaneously far larger and more...

              Hm, yeah, certainly the /r/conservative conception of "ANTIFA" as this unified, paramilitary group akin to the militia movement in the right but apparently simultaneously far larger and more effective and also inept at the same time is bunk and just an attempt to create a sufficient boogieman to scare the base.

              But I don't think that's how the NYT article puts it like that, and I do think it's pretty likely this is the work of fringe anarchists that are sort of in the far left as the people themselves claim to be.

              What is to be criticized (I mean, to whatever extent it's worth doing so) the /r/conservative response in this case isn't misattribution to "antifa", but the assertion that "antifa" is a large, unified bloc of violent extremists.

              5 votes
      2. [2]
        Akir
        Link Parent
        I can't read the NYT article at the moment, so I can't comment on it. But from the accounts that I have read, I see little reason to believe that these people were motivated by anti-fascism....

        I can't read the NYT article at the moment, so I can't comment on it. But from the accounts that I have read, I see little reason to believe that these people were motivated by anti-fascism. People came in there because they were angry at the election results, and the election of Biden in particular is a step away from fascism, not towards it.

        I also read that the people who broke in to the Democrat HQ in particular were part of a single group that were dressed in black, but no reporter has been able to identify who the group was. They were chanting "Black Lives Matter" but reporters also got some of them saying they don't want to be associated with that group.

        While this could be conservatives doing a false flag operation, like you mentioned in another post, I agree that there's not enough evidence to support that assumption. Much more likely is that this group is the same black bloc anarchists who already have a history of this kind of action in Portland (and who are also mislabeled by the right as "Antifa"). Though, once again, I can't see a reason why they would do this.

        2 votes
        1. RusticGiraffe
          Link Parent
          Maybe you should read the article to understand the motivations of the people protesting instead of fabricating ideas out of whole cloth.

          I can't read the NYT article at the moment

          Maybe you should read the article to understand the motivations of the people protesting instead of fabricating ideas out of whole cloth.

          2 votes
  6. RusticGiraffe
    Link

    Protesters in the Pacific Northwest smashed windows at a Democratic Party headquarters, marched through the streets and burned an American flag on Wednesday in a strident challenge by antifascist and racial-justice protesters to the new administration of President Biden, whose promised reforms, they declared, “won’t save us.”