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GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! You say you're a big boy but I can't agree. 'Cause the love you said you had ain't been put on me. LET'S GO TO PRESS.
It was another active weekend of protests and law enforcement response as thousands of protesters gathered nightly in front of the federal courthouse in downtown Portland. As per usual, the federal response to low-level shenanigans was overwhelming, as they unleashed seemingly endless clouds of dangerous CS gas into the crowds, the vast majority of whom were protesting in defense of Black lives that have been killed by police and systemic racism. Last night the crowd was somewhat smaller, and the day was marked by a shooting in Lownsdale Square in the afternoon, which may have been unrelated to the protests, more speakers in the early evening (including City Council Candidate Loretta Smith), fence rattling and small fire-setting at night, and the feds gassing and firing munitions at everyone in sight until the wee hours of the morning. We'll have a weekend wrap-up of the past three days later in the morning, so stay tuned for the details.
Federal agents use tear gas and flahsbangs, but protesters counter their effectiveness with leaf blowers, shields, gas masks, and a certain attitude that comes after 60 days of protest in the streets pic.twitter.com/rUfmhOErbx— Sergio Olmos (@MrOlmos) July 27, 2020
• Riot Ribs—the much beloved mutual aid eatery stationed smack dab in the middle of the nightly protests—has received so much financial support they are passing the leadership and money to police accountability group Don't Shoot PDX, and are expanding their help to other cities. Tuck Woodstock has the scoop!
“Stop with the theater,” Smiff said. “Are you going to defund the cops or not? You’re saying, ‘No?’ We’re going to be in the streets. That’s how it ends.”— You Know Me 🏁🐍 (@MacSmiff) July 27, 2020
Shout out to @OPB's @_jlevinson for putting the realest parts IN the article. https://t.co/CHJy4Az1Du
• Oregon U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams went off on Saturday calling protesters "violent extremists" (Stop it, you violent, extremist Wall of Moms! You're embarrassing usssssss!), and labeling Portland's city council's ban on local police helping federal officers as "nonsensical political theater." (Billy apparently knows a lot about drama.)
• Dozens more federal officers are being deployed to Portland to help quell the protests—even though officials now admit that their presence has made the situation exponentially worse.
• BREAKING: Portland Police are seemingly unaware that shields are primarily used for defense, even though that's what it clearly says in the dictionary.
Curious about the shields in the crowds? This tweet thread lays out the planning and coordination for these objects. Shields are an indicator that someone plans to fight not disperse. https://t.co/paEVSb4U14— Portland Police (@PortlandPolice) July 26, 2020
• The feds are responsible for more massive protests in Seattle as well, as the city takes to the streets to demonstrate in solidarity with Portland and against their own police department. The Stranger's Rich Smith has more.
• In coronavirus news, the Oregon Health Authority reported 277 new positive cases yesterday, the first time in many days the count has dropped below 300. Three deaths were reported as well, including a 40-year-old woman.
IN NATIONAL NEWS:
• Trump’s National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien has tested positive for the coronavirus. The White House reports that his symptoms are mild, he hasn't had contact with the president, and the “work of the National Security Council continues uninterrupted.” Yaaaaaaaaay.
I just crossed the 4 month mark of being sick w' #COVID19. I am young, & I was healthy. Dying is not the only thing to worry about. I still have a near-daily fever, loss of cognitive function, essential tremors, GI issues, severe headaches, heartrate of 150+, viral arthritis, 1/— Hannah Davis 🦈🛋 (@ahandvanish) July 26, 2020
• An experimental COVID vaccine from Moderna will be tested on 30,000 volunteers starting today, though there are other vaccines in contention, and there's no guarantee any of them will work.
• White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow says that the new stimulus package (set to finally debut today following weeks of GOP inaction) will include another $1,200 stimulus check and an extension of the eviction moratorium. But don't be fooled:
NEWS: Senate Republicans are proposing unemployment benefits of $200 a week — down from $600 — until states are able to create a system that would provide 70% of a laid-off worker’s previous pay, sources tell @elwasson https://t.co/CsL79wyDwY— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) July 27, 2020
• I'll just leave this headline here: "About 4,000 federal employees say they contracted the coronavirus at work — and 60 have died."
• To the surprise of absolutely no one, Republican Sen. Tom Cotton is trying to keep an important Black history curriculum out of schools and called slavery "a necessary evil."
• An armed Black Lives Matter protester in Austin was shot dead this weekend by an enraged driver who was arguing with demonstrators. Meanwhile in Colorado, a driver hit a crowd of protesters and another demonstrator was shot during marches this weekend.
• Americans will have the opportunity to pay their last respects to civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis as his body lies in state this week at the capitol in Washington, DC.
• After a national outcry, Sinclair Broadcast Group—which owns 193 TV stations across the country including 12 in Oregon and Portland's own KATU—says it will delay forcing their stations to run an interview with a debunked conspiracy theorist that's trying to push the idea that Dr. Anthony Fauci caused the coronavirus.
They made it like, four days. https://t.co/VVm0lVvJWq— Jeremy Bowers (@jeremybowers) July 27, 2020
• You need some laughs, right? Then get your tickets now for the I, Anonymous livestream show featuring funny-as-all-get-out comedians including Arlo Weierhauser, Sean Jordan, and David Gborie coming at you Wednesday, July 29!
• Now let's peep at some WEATHER: Another very hot day with a high of 100—though temps will drop to 90 tomorrow and then to the low 80s by Friday.
• And finally, this is a fair representation of my current psychological state.
The moment Kevin finally realised he had a drink problem.— Paul Bronks (@SlenderSherbet) July 25, 2020
📹: Imgur user LollipopFromHell pic.twitter.com/gTr2oxMYGM