Feds and scofflaws: Go home

I am appalled at the lessons I have been learning regarding the relationship between so many police departments and Black folks since slavery. I believe in and support social justice, the Black lives matter momentum, demilitarizing the police. I support the protesters here and around the world, and also want the feds to GO HOME…wherever that is. It is very scary to see how a president can deploy various agencies to fight violence, yet generate more violence, and essentially hold a city hostage, and remain whether they are wanted or not. Another radical change in how we function as a country?

However, I see no valid point [or] purpose in writing graffiti all over buildings, trying to start fires, antagonizing police by shining lasers into their eyes, throwing anything at them. How is that supposed to further the cause of racial equality or anything the majority of protesters are genuinely wanting to accomplish? It seems those bent on this destructive behavior are taking away from the legitimate, essential issues and need for transformation regarding racial inequality, police reform, and holding ourselves accountable for our dark past and making lasting changes in our society.

It may be fuel for lawsuits to push a confrontation between the federal agents and the rights of local government, but it all takes away from the transformation people are wanting to see happen. To the graffiti-writers, the violent, those who attack the police physically, and instigate reaction from police I say GO HOME to you as well. Just as I—and many others do not want the feds here—I and many others do not want the instigating, destructive people here either.

Good riddance to both.

Yolanda Wysocki
Wood Village

Portland Police should protect and serve

Kudos to the Portland City Council for banning collaboration between the Portland police and the out-of-control federal law enforcement agencies.

However, shouldn't the Portland police be protecting the people of Portland against these unlawful abuses of power? Why aren't the Portland police protecting protesters and defending against the federal officers that are detaining people in unmarked vehicles and indiscriminately spraying tear gas on peaceful Portlanders who are exercising their right to dissent?

We should condemn the actions of violent protesters and recognize the need for the U.S. marshals to protect federal property from vandalism. However, in the face of gross overreach by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and other federal agencies, Police Chief Chuck Lovell appears to be derelict in his duty to protect and serve the people of Portland. The City Council should pass a resolution directing the Portland police to protect protesters and defend against federal law enforcement agents when they are violating people's rights to dissent.

Why are moms and veterans having to do the police's work? It's time for the Portland police to protect and serve their residents and stand up to federal abuse.

Ben Wallace
Reed College Class of '93
Albany, Calif.

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