After A Summer Of Anarchy, Portland Is Up In Flames Again Following The Election

After A Summer Of Anarchy, Portland Is Up In Flames Again Following The Election

After months-long anarchy in Portland, Oregon, over the summer, the city is going up in flames once again as rioters are taking to the streets amid ongoing ballot counting and election controversy across the country.

Authorities declared that the Portland protest had descended into a riot Wednesday night, when groups began smashing windows of downtown businesses.

The Multnomah County Sheriff’s office shared photos of some of the items confiscated by law enforcement, including commercial-grade fireworks, hammers, and spray paint. Unified command, the team of authorities including the Portland Police Bureau, the Oregon State Police, and the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, reported that they also seized an improvised explosive device and a knife.

Brenna Kelly of Fox 12 Oregon reported that rioters threw a Molotov cocktail and glass bottles, with one person being arrested in possession of a rifle. Kelly also shared a video of rioters burning an American flag.

Rioters vandalized local businesses. Reporter Jennifer Dowling tweeted a video of the property destruction at the Wildfang storefront, where displayed behind the smashed window is a letter board, reading: “‘Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that.’ -MLK”

About 9 p.m. Wednesday, unified command reported that the demonstrations included what looked to be two different groups. One group safely marched from Revolution Hall in southeast Portland to downtown and back. The other group appeared to be responsible for most of the crime, including destroying businesses, setting fires in the streets, and throwing projectiles at officers.

Fox News reported that at least 11 arrests were made Wednesday night. After refusing to deploy the National Guard for six months, Gov. Kate Brown finally called in the guard after 2020 election votes had been cast.

“Guard members are trained in crowd control and will be riding with local response teams. They are dressed in military style garb, which is their uniform,” the Multnomah County Sheriff’s office said. “Oregon National Guard members are civilian community members helping to protect us. We don’t take this decision lightly.”

Brown on Monday issued an executive order, placing the Portland Police Bureau under the command of the Oregon State Police and the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office. The order, which was set to expire at 5 p.m. on Wednesday night, has been extended through 5 p.m. on Friday. According to Portand Mercury, this move permits all the officers to use tear gas.

The current lawlessness in Portland follows months of demonstrations and crime over the summer, including even a homicide of a Trump supporter, allegedly by a self-proclaimed Antifa member in August. At the time of that fatal shooting, the anarchy had been ongoing in Portland for 95 consecutive days following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minn. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler shifted the blame to President Donald Trump and refused federal support.

“It’s you who have created the hate and the division,” Wheeler said. “Your campaign of fear is as anti-democratic as anything you’ve done to create hate and vitriol in our beautiful country.”

On Sept. 21, the U.S. Department of Justice designated Portland, as well as New York City and Seattle, violent anarchy zones, saying the cities were “permitting violence and destruction of property.”

Now, unrest is breaking out in cities again, as two days after the election, many ballots have yet to be counted, with several states too close to call and litigation in the works. Both Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are short of the necessary 270 Electoral College votes necessary for victory.

Kylee Zempel is an assistant editor at The Federalist. Follow her on Twitter @kyleezempel.
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