Portland Pride not policing its own as violence breaks out over weekend
The Portland Pride festival was this weekend in Portland, OR, and there was no shortage of violence to be found. Instead of being a happy and safe place for everyone, there were multiple assaults, screams of fear, and equipment theft as the event failed to police its own. Through several video feeds, it is clear who is starting the violence. It is not protesters, but partakers of the festival, parade and other groups using the event as a conduit for their violent agenda.
How come this happened?
What is different from this event, and prior rallies lately such as the free speech rallies? The differentiating factor seems to be that the marchers and event goers were not policing their own. There were members identifying as AntiFa and SHARP, as well as event/parade goers assaulting people as they saw fit. The assaults ranged from pepper spray, choke holds, physical attacks, glitter blown in face, alcohol sprayed in face, and more.
What did these people do to get attacked?
Self-proclaimed street preachers were protesting the march and exercising their free speech. They were out of the way, but people came to them to harass them. The harassment turned into assaults repeatedly and nothing was done.
The attacker’s issue? That any speech they don’t like can be violently assaulted without impunity, and that as soon as you try to defend yourself or film the situation, there’s open season on you. This coincides with anyone not as far left-leaning as them, is automatically “alt-right” and a “Nazi,” and thus it is socially acceptable to assault.
Why was this event so violent, when prior events didn’t have these issues?
Prior events, such as June 15th in Olympia, WA, June 4th in Portland, OR, and May 13th in Boston, MA, all had staff policing their own groups. All of the violence began with the other side pro-actively attacking. This event, however, didn’t have staff from the group protecting all sides. When prior groups have hosted events, they deliberately set aside people to specifically make sure their own stay respectable.
Such measures were also in place to keep radical elements out. Examples of this include on 6/4 when Europa continually got denied entrance of the Free Speech rally in Portland, OR, and Jeremy Christian being expelled from the 82nd Rally in Portland, OR in April. This Pride event had no such planning in place. Instead of keeping violent elements out, rally-goers were free to search and attack Free Speech elements that were not hurting anyone.
Every event should be safe for everyone, as long as you aren’t hurting anyone. Free speech should never be met with assault, even if you disagree with it. If conservatives can host multiple events and keep their side under control even under continual assault and threats of violence, there’s no excuse for everyone else to not do the same.
There has been an update to the situation, where some of the attackers have been identified, including police reports.