The View from Inside Portland's Federal Courthouse

These are not "peaceful protests."

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

Most media coverage of the protests and riots in Portland (and other cities) is from the vantage point of those outside federal properties, in and among the protesters. Many of these reports characterize the protests as "peaceful" or "largely" so.

The AP's Mike Balsamo has posted a valuable twitter thread on his experience inside the federal courthouse in Portland. From this vantage point, the protests are anything but peaceful. As Balsamo documents, the federal agents inside the courthouse have come under assault on a nightly basis. It is worth a read.

NEXT: Are These the Folks You Want Policing Your City?

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  1. “Most media coverage of the protests and riots in Portland (and other cities) is from the vantage point of those outside federal properties, in and among the protesters. Many of these reports characterize the protests as “peaceful” or “largely” so.”

    And they’re characterizing them that way despite it being perfectly obvious from the outside, too, that the riots are not peaceful.

    1. Many of these reports characterize the protests as “peaceful” or “largely” so.”

      Balsano himself says that the protestors who appear during theday are peaceful.

      Where are you getting your information?

      1. Yes, the protests are fairly peaceful during the day, then as the sun goes down, the peaceful people leave, the violent rioters come out of the woodwork, and you’ve got riots going on.

        We’re not generally talking about the daytime protests, because there’s no fight over those.

        1. The peaceful protestors are enabling the violent ones. Providing cover.

          1. Not so much during the day, but nobody is showing up at night without intending to do at least that.

            1. The daylight protestors know that the protests are going to turn violent in the night.

              By starting the protests, they draw interest and media coverage that the violent ones crave.

              1. You would never apply this standard to a conservative protest. So if some Second Amendment types organize a protest and then later in the protest, some Storm Front types show up and start up some violence, it’s the fault of the protest organizers?

                1. “it’s the fault of the protest organizers?”

                  First time, no. Second time, maybe. 50th time, yes.

                  The violence is completely foreseeable at this stage. The protest organizers are no longer innocent.

                2. Dilan — remember Charlettesville????

                3. When they show up for the next few weeks to take their shifts providing cover for the violent actors? yes.

  2. It seems to me that MSM implicitly relies on a woke definition of “violent protest.” In that parlance (newspeak?), “violence” comprises only acts directed at people — not property. So any riot aimed at businesses or public buildings, but not primarily at persons, are then by definition not “violent” but escalate and become violent only if protestors are met with police opposition — in which case “violence” might erupt, and are then caused by the police denying a peaceful destruction of property belonging to capitalists and white power mongers. Get with it, folks. It’s a new world out there.

  3. I don’t support the President’s improvident decision to send in federal agents from outside of Portland, into Portland. That said, can someone who supports the protesters explain to me what the point is of attacking the fence, night after night? Or setting fires, or using sling shots to launch things at US Marshals, or trying to blind them with lasers? It seems to me that the only reason the violent people are there is to fuck with the feds. Which has nothing to do with protesting, that’s just finding your enemy on their battleground. And if it’s symbolic to “protest” at a police station, or federal courthouse, why do you have to tear fences down? Fences don’t stop shouts. Shout away.

    Also why would you protest at a federal courthouse re: police violence, anyway? The federal courthouse is where you’d file a 1983 lawsuit to enforce the CRA. Seems like the worst target.

    1. I support the protestors because, as Balsano points out,

      Everyone I spoke to this weekend acknowledged there were different groups of protesters — by day, there are mostly peaceful protesters who want to effect meaningful change, but by the middle of the night, nearly all of those people are gone and the violence really picks up.

      For another view of events in Portland, see here.

      It is true that some protesters are violent. Some start small trash fires. Others paint graffiti, including “kill pigs” and “kill cops,” or hurl water bottles or firecrackers at federal agents. Some protesters point lasers at officers and in one case a man allegedly hit an agent with a hammer.

      Such violence is wrong and plays into Trump’s narrative. ….

      But it’s also true that the vast majority of those in the crowds each evening are peaceful. They sing about racial justice, chant “Feds out now” and try to protect their city from violent intruders dispatched by Trump.

      In any case, it seems likely that the feds have stoked the violence, and that that was the purpose of sending them.

      1. “In any case, it seems likely that the feds have stoked the violence, and that that was the purpose of sending them.”
        No, they were sent to protect federal assets, like the courthouse! So, their presence protecting federal assets from vandalism and destruction is somehow “stoking” violence? Sheesh!

        1. The riots started about 60 days ago. The federal officers have only been there two or three weeks.

          How could a thing that has not het occurred cause another thing that has been going on for over a month?

      2. “In any case, it seems likely that the feds have stoked the violence, and that that was the purpose of sending them.”

        Yeah. The Feds standing around in a courthouse is really a threat to our freedom and liberty. One that demands you show up with bombs and fireworks.

        Or if you don’t like the Feds, just leave them be. Pretty easy option. They will sit in the courthouse for a few weeks and then just leave.

        1. They used to say that the USSR’s definition of “peace” was, “what prevails so long as the USSR gets its way”.

          The left, no surprise, defines it the same way.

      3. Perhaps the Feds have given them a convenient focal point, but they were all ready stoked.

        Anyone familiar with the Northwest anarchist culture knows that any excuse for a riot from Eugene thru Portland to Seattle is a good excuse dating back to the Battle for Seattle in 2000. We used to joke that the highlight of the Eugene social calendar was the annual Mayday mayhem in Seattle. Where every year the anarchists would go thru downtown Seattle breaking windows and setting trash fires. Then confronting police all night after being expelled to Capital Hill.

        Nothing in Portland or Seattle has to do with Trump except the timing, Eric Floyd didn’t have anything to do with Trump anymore than Michael Brown or Rodney King did. These are overwhelmingly white revolutionaries from the 2 whitest major cities in the USA that are just using it as an excuse.

      4. What, in your view, should the federal government do now?

      5. The feds striking that navy vet was definitely dumb. But the feds didn’t show up until day 25 of the protests. If every night for weeks you show up and other people attack the fences, what are you there for except the fence attack? Peaceful protesters know how that plays out. They show up, are around violent people, and then get to be collateral damage from riot control. If you’re one of the peaceful protesters at that point, what are you doing there?

        1. Providing plausible deniability.

        2. NJoT — if everybody in the USN was a law abiding citizen, the USN would neither need NCIS nor Shore Patrol.

          We’ve somehow swung from one extreme to another — from the Circa-Vietnam vilification of veterans to now believing that they can do no wrong.

      6. Yeah, what choice do the rioters have other than to attack the federal agents protecting a courthouse? Clearly, this was the inevitable result of using law enforcement officers to enforce the law!

        1. Isn’t this the exact argument y’all are using to defend the attacks and arrests of peaceful protesters?

          1. Look, Sarcastro, let’s get this clear: Just because you insist on describing rioters as “peaceful protesters”, doesn’t mean that when we defend arresting violent rioters, we’re defending attacking and arresting peaceful protesters.

            It just means you’re dishonestly sticking to the party line. Where the party is pretty much the CPUSA.

            1. The argument I have seen in favor of roughing up and arresting protesters, from you among others, is ‘well, what did the protesters expect?’

              1. Yes, swing at a cop. What do you expect?

    2. I support the protests, but I cannot defend the violence, particularly the laser pointers.

      From twitter and forums, it looks like it’s simplistic us versus them villainy narrative without much long-term consideration.
      The fence thing is replicating other successes elsewhere with police, that caused the police to withdraw. I don’t think they understand the difference in resources here.

      1. So we’re talking about the same stuff, I assume by “fence thing” you mean the protesters attacking the fences? If so, could you give some examples of where that’s been successful?

        It raises a larger question about what success means. I live in a large city that saw protests (though thankfully nothing like what Portland is going through). The protesters would go to City Hall or to the police station and yell, with signs, etc. They shut down a highway at some point. In the early days there was probably some over-aggressive response from the police, which likely prolonged the protests for a week.

        From my vantage point, the purpose of the protest is to confront city government, and specifically the police, where they stand. With that goal in mind, why would the protesters want “the police to withdraw”? The entire pageant depends on the other side showing up.

        Are the two of us on the same page that a person who shows up to attack a government fence, put up to protect government property, should be arrested? Or is our disagreement more fundamental than that? While I understand that any protest will have some attendant property damage (and therefore not an excuse to shut down all protest), are you and I at least on the same page that anyone responsible for property damage or violence should be arrested and removed?

        I also appreciate that during a protest there will be a tense period in which the police and the protesters are engaging in borderline tactics to see where the line will be drawn. This is true of any skirmish. And that some part of the protesters, including the peaceful ones, are there to see the police overreact, and in fact want that to happen. And that the police overreaction will solidify their moral position, and the moral position of the protest. But like most skirmishes you’ll reach an equilibrium, as the police figure out what’s not working, and most of the protesters realize they aren’t willing to go far enough to cause an all out war. And yet here we are at day 59 in Portland. What is it the protesters want? The feds are never going to agree to give them the federal courthouse (which shouldn’t be a strategic target in any event). So what are the people at the fence (even the ones who aren’t attacking it) doing there, exactly? What are the demands? I read articles every day about this, but I never hear any demands that could reasonably bring either side to a negotiating table. And if there isn’t any intent to start a negotiation, this isn’t a protest anymore. And if it isn’t a protest, there can’t be any protesters.

        1. “I assume by “fence thing” you mean the protesters attacking the fences? If so, could you give some examples of where that’s been successful?”

          The rioters have managed to occupy precinct buildings in Minneapolis and Seattle.

          “While I understand that any protest will have some attendant property damage …”

          The Million Man March, the Million Mom March, the 2A rally in Richmond, the 1963 March where MLK gave the famous ‘I have a dream’ speech, and many others managed to make their point without property damage.

          1. I wouldn’t compare favorably the protesters in Portland to the Million Man March.

          2. Plug the fence into your standard 8700 volt overhead power line.

            Problem solved….

        2. Trying to knock the fences over is what I’m talking about.

          There are plenty examples of protests where the police didn’t show. No doubt the more violent folks are pretty into the confrontation aspect; I don’t think everyone is.

          Your analysis of the psychology of violence erupting is fair, but doesn’t make the rioters any less morally culpable.
          The Portland protests can’t have been about confrontation at day 59, right? It had to be about other reasons why people protest – the need to do something, solidarity/networking, the PPD still sucking and not being one of the police departments being reformed, etc.

          They don’t want to take a Federal courthouse, they want to deface a symbol of the authority they’re protesting the corruption of. This is not a calculation nor an exact science – look at some of the dumber statues that were toppled.

          I don’t think protests are necessarily about forcing negotiation. Merely changing the political calculus is all you need. Did the Vietnam protests force a negotiation with the protesters? It did not.
          When I spoke to friends of mine protesting the Iraq War, they just wanted to raise the political price. And solidarity…whatever that means.

          1. Could you give some examples of a protest where the police didn’t show up?

            I think you are right that much–in my view most–of what drives protests is the inward looking relief of feeling like you’re part of something. But if that’s what protesting is really about–pointless performative LARPing to feel good–that undercuts all support for protests. Why should I get stuck in traffic just so you can feel good about yourself? It’s no longer about fighting the forces of old and evil, it’s just Tuesday night. You could have stayed home and drank your problems away, rather than making them other peoples’ problems. Self-indulgence is not a cause.

            1. Phelps protested outside of Comicon one year.

              Picket-lines all over the place.

              DC protests right now are often not drawing police as the go through the streets until they get near the WH.

              I remember DC had a Muslims against terrorism protest back in 2015 that marched around the State Department and to the WH without any police except the usual WH folks. Lots of niqabs. Was memorable.

              I thought that about protests (that it was more internal than useful), actually. Till I mentioned to my Mom that a protest that doesn’t get press coverage doesn’t matter. She was pretty into the Vietnam protests. Now, her PoV is certainly skewed, but she explained how protests are about networking and solidarity and that building a movement can occur separate from making the news.

              IMO the BLM protests have reached the apex of the change they can push this time around. And it’s been vastly more than I would have thought.
              But it’s not for me to say it’s time for them to end. I’m not of that movement, and I can’t really give them advice. Especially since COVID concerns with protests have not been born out for reasons I don’t quite yet understand.

              We shall see if people get ticked off and the progress begins to backslide. It’s not outside of the realm of possibility, but I’d bet against that; I think most people are going to write off all parties.

              1. The officers are not going to be convicted.

                Then things will get even more interesting.

    3. “Also why would you protest at a federal courthouse re: police violence, anyway?”

      To provoke a response. To get in the news. To get famous. It’s a win win for protestors.

      They either
      1. Burn down the courthouse, which gets them news, and noticed.
      2. Get video of the Feds “attacking” them, which gets them news, and noticed.

  4. The downplaying of rioters shooting live fireworks at buildings and officers is outrageous. Beside the fact that it is straight up assault and dangerous, the media is treating it like the same as standing there holding a sign.

    Also, the Feds have tried several times to put up a fence to protect the courthouse and every time the rioters have ripped it down or moved it. So don’t give me that line about the Feds are inciting this or overreacting when their perimeter is breached.

    1. Suppose you are a truly peaceful protestor. Someone standing beside you lights and throws a Molotov cocktail at the Federal building, while another pitches a bottle of ice at a cop’s head. You just continue to stand there with your sign, being peaceful.
      If someone beat a man beside you would you still just stand by? If they shot someone?
      Standing by, not voicing objections to violent acts sort of makes you a willing participant.

      1. If I am at a protest where someone cracks out a fire bomb I am not going to stick around to see what happens.

      2. “You just continue to stand there with your sign, being peaceful.”

        A sensible person goes home.

        You can’t be a non-violent part of a violent mob, you are a co-conspirator.

      3. There are videos from back in June of protesters getting the crap beat out of them by their fellows for throwing firecrackers.

      4. Does this principle apply equally to cops and CBP agents who stand by as their colleagues brutalize and violate the rights protesters, without voicing objection? Because if so, we’re gonna need to start building a lot more prisons.

        1. Of course? Who doesn’t blame cops who look away?

          1. I mean, literally almost every person who supports the view stated above.

        2. Nice 6-week-old moniker, auntie. Wonder what you’re here for?

          1. I’m just a fun aunt who believes in defeating fascists and their fellow travelers through “debate” and “civil discourse” 😉

      5. “Standing by, not voicing objections to violent acts sort of makes you a willing participant.”

        Is that the Vicki Weaver Doctrine?

      6. Standing by, not voicing objections to violent acts sort of makes you a willing participant.

        This is the central theme of the Floyd aspect of it.

  5. Insisting the protests are peaceful at this point is just naive.

    1. Its not naive – Its intentional lying

      1. It isn’t intentionally lying it is dirty dirty lying.

    2. Yeah, those Moms are real secret Antifa.

      Why do you so want to criminalize dissent?

      1. Its very difficult to take off a black shirt and put on a yellow one. Quite painful and time consuming too.

        1. But until you provide evidence that’s going on, you’re criminalizing dissent without probable cause.

          1. I am not a cop, not making an arrest. I don’t need probable cause to understand things.

            Look at the faces. Those Moms are largely young. There is at least one picture of a [fat] “mom” tearing down the fence.

            Hippies are still saying “chicks to the front” to fool the gullible.

            1. So you’re criminalizing dissent based on made up nonsense about faces and hippy sayings. More outcome-oriented reasoning I’d have trouble finding.

              This is weak-sauce; you want to lump everyone together as violent bad-guys. For what purpose, I hesitate to speculate.

          2. It would be helpful to know exactly what they are dissenting. The vast majority are unemployed white people who live in one of the whitest and most “progressive” cities in the country. But they gotta burn down a federal courthouse because a cop killed a black guy in … Minnesota? I probably meet more black people in a week than these twits have in their whole 20 years on the planet and I will tell you for a fact, the black people I know have nothing in common with these clowns and certainly don’t want their “help”. So lets see a list of demands a little more specific than Fuck The Police.

            1. Yes. White people can be angry about stuff that doesn’t directly effect them.
              And PPD has been known having a culture clash with the rest of Portland for a while now, which I’m sure helped, but the protests, like most of the protests nationwide, were about the national problem not a local one.

              1. Yeah my point is I know a lot of black people and I meet them every day. They are almost to a person charming, polite, productive civilized people. They do not favor rioting, violence and property destruction. These idiots are not marching in solidarity with the vast majority of American blacks, they have a different agenda and I’d like to know wtf it is.
                Young black men particularly in large metropolitan areas get an undue amount of attention from cops with mostly progressive city governments and fully integrated police forces. This leads to way too much interaction with the cops and the occasional fatality. There are some pretty obvious ways to minimize these events like ending the war on drugs, the war on guns and all of the other progressive wars that put way too many people in the cross-hairs. If these people are serious about their purported goal we should be hearing about these issues but all we hear is white people chanting Black Lives Matter. OK. What are they gonna do about it? Burn down a pawn shop? Destroy a neighborhood tavern? Blind a federal marshal? The rioters have an agenda that does not benefit black Americans and they know it.

                1. The “peaceful protesters ” as Sarcastro likes to call them AKA, The rioters have an agenda that does not benefit black Americans and they know it and Sarcastro knows it

                  1. Don’t conflate peaceful protesters and rioters.

                    And don’t pretend you know better about what helps black Americans.

                    1. I am not the one conflating peaceful protesters with rioters.

                      BLM has set race relations back – not forward.

                      But you would already know that if you were honest

      2. I love that you assume they are actually moms.

        …because one cannot POSSIBLY lie about that.

        They also have engaged in vandalism as well, so fuck those “people”

        1. I love how you assume having a kid means you can’t be Antifa.

          My point is that these Moms are not violent in aspect nor action. Do you believe we should treat them as violent?

          1. Ability to get pregnant and live off the state is not inherently noble.

          2. They have engaged in the assaults on the courthouse. They are certainly violent.

      3. There were also like 20 moms. Did you see the pictures of the actual group of the “wall of mom’s” or did you just read the media account? Ever wonder why those photos were all just zoomed in and cropped. Well now you know.

        1. So what? The question remains regardless of how many there are. Do you think they should be treated as Antifa terrorists?

          1. If you associate in a riot situation with terrorists then the police have little option left.

            1. But that’s not what these Moms are doing, is it?

              1. You know Sarcastr0, there is such a thing as being judged by the company you keep. I have no sympathy.

                1. As has been pointed out elsewhere, the rioting happens much later at night than the protests. It’s not easy to separate them.

                  And guilt by association doesn’t have a great history in this country. Certainly it’s not enough to justify use of force.

                  1. “ And guilt by association doesn’t have a great history in this country. Certainly it’s not enough to justify use of force.”

                    Apparently, that’s only a 1-way street.

  6. This is also a funny narrative being pushed by the liberals who run these cities that were, just in January, lecturing us about the “rule of law” that was so important when they impeached Trump.

  7. Bloodthirsty, authoritarian, cranky right-wingers (sore from getting stomped by better people in the culture war, resentful from years of obsequiously complying with the preferences of the liberal-libertarian mainstream) are among my favorite culture war casualties.

    See you in November, clingers. Then again in January. After that, not so much.

  8. I work one block from the federal courthouse. I have not attended any protests (on purpose, but I have walked through on my way home from work.) This is my impression of the how things devolved in Portland.

    The first couple of nights, PPB entirely overreacted to the demonstrations. People were upset and hurt and needed to support each other. PPB came out swinging and needlessly escalated the situation. The usual suspects came out late those nights and took advantage of the situation to loot and destroy.

    The federal courthouse remained all but untouched for weeks. There was anti-cop & anti-PPB graffiti painted on the walls, but it was otherwise undamaged. The focus remained on the Justice Center (JC) and PPB.

    After a while, the protests were beginning to wind down. We went from a couple thousand people every night to just a few hundred hard core protesters and vandals. Well within the ability of PPB to keep a handle on things. It was actually beginning to feel like things might finally be getting back to as close to normal as it could be in a pandemic.

    But, the fox news crowd got Trump all riled up and he saw an opportunity to grandstand. It’s devolved into something far more destructive and I don’t see an end to it until long after the feds leave.

    One thing you should understand about Portland. We have been policed by outsiders for a very long time. I am personally acquainted with close to 50 PPB officers. I know of just officer who lives in Portland. Most of the rest live in Clark County Washington. The latest stats are that only something like 16% live in the city. They are not our neighbors and friends. They view us as their enemies.

    Now we have even more outsiders coming in to bully the populace. We’re not happy and I don’t think anyone would be with what is going on. At 8:00 this morning, my eyes were burning, my nose was stinging and I had several coughing fits all because the feds used so much gas that it continued to linger in nearby office buildings. What did I and my office mates do to deserve that? What did any of us who live and work in the area do to deserve that?

    1. Do y’all think this lady is Antifa, or lying?

      1. The Portland Police have a daily blog. You can find e.g. the fence around the Fed Bldg being torn down by rioters on Jun 12, etc. And of course there are lots of stuff going on at the next door Justice Center.

        So if you are in charge of the Fed Bldg security, you are going to have more than the usual overnight skeleton crew on duty. For a couple of weeks, you can get by by having your local people work double shifts or whatever, then you ask for help … which brings us to July.

        The rioters don’t like that and increase their efforts.

        Your view seems to be that the attacks are a reasonable response to the feds having people ready to secure the building. I disagree. If the rioters leave the Fed Bldg alone, the Feds will leave them alone. That would be nice for everyone – the feds could go home to their families, people in the area wouldn’t be smelling gas, people wouldn’t be getting injured, etc, etc. All the rioters have to do is … stop rioting.

        We haven’t really had a right wing riots since the days of segregation, but suppose that the Bundyites were doing this every night during the various Bundy trials. You’d be all for the feds just withdrawing and letting the Bundyites take over the courthouse like they did the refuge, right? Gotta give the rioters a little space, don’t want to be confrontational, right?

        1. Your view seems to be that the attacks are a reasonable response to the feds having people ready to secure the building.

          No, my view is that there’s a lot of protesting that isn’t attacking the cops, and conflating them is a horrible idea.
          https://reason.com/2020/07/27/the-view-from-inside-portlands-federal-courthouse/#comment-8371199

          If the rioters leave the Fed Bldg alone, the Feds will leave them alone.
          This is very clearly untrue, given the sweeps to clear the streets the Feds have been making. Preemptive action by law enforcement is not generally a good move.

          I also think it’s pretty difficult to say the right answer is to stand down if you find this a monstrous federal overreach.

          Yeah, the right doesn’t riot, they prefer the bunker with guns paradigm. We all have our idiosyncrasies.

          1. >>If the rioters leave the Fed Bldg alone, the Feds will leave them alone.
            >This is very clearly untrue, given the sweeps to clear the streets the Feds have been making. Preemptive action by law enforcement is not generally a good move.

            Can you find an example of the feds doing a ‘sweep to clear the streets’ that isn’t immediately adjacent to the Federal Building? In fact, the vids I have seen mostly have them inside the fence.

            >a monstrous federal overreach.

            So, let’s appoint you emperor. What would you do? Just send the feds protecting the building home? What is your confidence level that the rioters will go all ‘Mission Accomplished’ and leave? Do you evacuate the office workers and so on first? Remove the various confidential records from the judges and prosecutor’s offices and shut the building down?

            >Yeah, the right doesn’t riot, they prefer the bunker with guns paradigm. We all have our idiosyncrasies.

            One of those seems to harm other people, and one harms the person doing it.

      2. Sarcastr), when the DNC had it’s 2004 convention in Boston, it created a similar living nightmare for those working in the city.

        My advice to her is what the DNC gave to Bostonians — take your vacation time off now.

      3. Lying, yes, possibly Antifa, I dunno. She certainly describers herself as one of the protesters, so being tarred by her acquaintances she defends isn’t surprising.

        You can see the lies start with “PPB entirely overreacted” and proceed with that narrative about the poor “bullied” protesters. She already has a side – the “protesters” – and is building her entire narrative based on the assumption that poor ‘Grandma’ is an innocent and unbiased narrator.

        Finally, when the post starts talking about “outsiders”? That’s some Grade-A Bullshit ™ right there. Do you know how far it is from Portland to Clark County Washington?
        Zero feet. Clark County is literally zero feet away from Portland – the two districts are adjacent.
        However, I do find it believable that only 16% of Portland cops live within Portland city limits… because Portland housing costs are quite high, while Clark or Multnomah Counties are significantly lower. Multnomah, by the way, is the county that contains Portland inside Oregon – the suburbs to Portland’s city. These “outsiders” who “hate her” are living a shocking 5-10 miles away from the Federal Courthouse.

        So, yeah. Antifa, possibly. Lying, yes.

        1. I have never once been out with the protesters. I’ve had to walk thru groups as I’ve left work to get to the MAX.

          Oregonlive has posted public employee salaries for years. It doesn’t take long for a PPB officer to make nearly $100,000. If I can live in Portland making half that, they can live here too. They don’t want to. That’s fine, but you can totally smell the BS when Daryl Turner claims PPB officers “love this city.” They hate it. I interact often with PPB in my work. They see me as an ally, which I am. I truly like many I deal with, but they do not like Portland. They talk. I hear them. They hate the people here. They mock them.

          You can decide I’m lying. I really don’t care. I’ve lurked here for some time. The commenters here are a mostly loathsome lot. Your approval means nothing to me, one way or the other.

    2. “I know of just officer who lives in Portland. Most of the rest live in Clark County Washington.”

      WHY?

      Usually it is because they can’t afford to live where they work, so they have to commute. And where were they born?

      Yes, I can see people who were economically driven out of the town in which they were born being upset about it. Can’t you?

      1. For those not familiar with the city, the Fleet Center (or whatever it is being called this week) is above North Station, a transit hub that serves two (of four) subway lines and is the terminus of all commuter rail lines coming into the city from the North & NorthWest, as well as Amtrak from NH/ME.

        BON had to be shut down for security reasons.

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