Taxpayers Association of Oregon
Portland’s 100th day of protesting on Saturday September 5th was largely won by Portland Police. This despite having one of the largest (500-1,000) and most aggressive gatherings of violent protestors to deal with, while at the same time trying to protect one of Portland’s smaller and more difficult to defend police stations (map left).
The moment protestors began marching on the streets is when a few Molotov cocktails began to fly.
The police immediately responded with tear gas which sent the crowd eastward down Stark street.
As the map details, over the next four hours, in the middle of the night, protestors began to find other ways to get to the police station. They tried to walk through a residential neighborhood but were stopped by a police line.
Everywhere protestors went the police were there blocking their way. Protestors would turn a corner and see a brand new police line down the road where they were hoping to go. The map shows the major points where protestors tried to hold their ground but failed.
The map shows the major migration but fails to show the how the group became broken into several wandering groups going off in all sorts of directions unable to get back to each other.
From being inside the crowd you could hear the desperation from protest organizers in their bullhorn:
“We didn’t come here to spend all night running away from them!”
“We can’t keep retreating. One of the these days were are going to need to hold the line.”
At one point on the second wave into Ventura Park, people began fleeing when two officers surprisingly appeared around the corner. The organizers could be heard scolding the crowd “Stop running you idiots! There is only two of them! There is only two of them! @#$%* Stop running!” People bolted anyways. (I don’t blame the crowd, because I ran too).
The words “Stop running” and “Stop panicking everyone” were among the most common phrases that night.
Despite it being the celebrated 100th day (weekend) and having enormous crowds, the police has the upper hand as the protestors were on a confusing near five hour retreat further broken into numerous splinter groups which only added to their disorder and meltdown.
The police were assertive and used tear gas more often than normal. Without using tear gas the outcome would have been different.
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