Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. We must all do more to help stop this western corporate arrogance that puts the future generations lives in despair. @BruceKGagnon

Saturday, August 15, 2020

The Cops Ran Us Over

Vietnam veteran Mike Hastie (photographer) in Portland, Oregon in recent days after cops knocked him to the ground.

By Mike Hastie

I was involved in another demonstration downtown Portland, when the police declared it a riot, which it was not. But, out they came in full force. At first they walk us backward down the street, and then they ran at us, and then they slowed down and then they ran at us again. Some people were knocked down. I was taking pictures in the middle of the street, because the cops slowed down to a fast walk, which gave me time to take the pictures I wanted.

Then, all of a sudden, a group of cops charged us and I couldn't get out of the way, so they knocked me down to the street, and stepped over me. When I hit the street my face did also, cutting me on the right cheek. As in any facial cut, the blood covered my face, making it look worse than it was. I was treated immediately by a woman medic, who was so incredibly kind to me. I had no other injuries, except for a scrapped elbow.

I wanted to get this out to let people know I am fine, because a video of what happened may go viral, as it was put out immediately after it happened. The [photo above] has two pictures. The top picture was the last picture I took just before the cops ran me over. The bottom picture was taken minutes later of the blood on my face. I have other pictures I took that I may put out, because they are more story telling of what happens when the cops inflict more punishment when it does not fit the crime.

It is hard to tell where this is all going, as Portland is constantly forcing the issue of police violence across America. There was great African-American leadership at this demonstration. Their stories continue to educate every white person who I believe is honestly supporting Black Lives Matter.

The greatest protection we have is the camera, and that is why all photographers are there. Pictures record the personality and nature of Empire.

Mike Hastie
Portland, Oregon
August 13, 2020
Resident for 44 years
Vietnam war medic

In a related story from Austin, Texas:

"The Austin City Council has voted to make one of the most substantial cuts to a major city’s police budget since George Floyd’s death, which sparked calls across the country to defund police. In a unanimous vote, the council passed a joint proposal to shrink the police department’s budget by nearly $150 million and reinvest a portion of those funds in services for the community."

“Today’s budget vote is unprecedented in Texas. We’ve begun a transformational change away from mass incarceration and toward real community safety,” said Councilmember Gregorio Casar in a statement shared with The Appeal. “Today, we chose to create a safer city. We’re opening a new family violence shelter; we’re hiring mental health crisis teams; we voted to get hundreds more people out of homelessness; we funded gun violence prevention programs.”

See the whole story here


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