Wet Firecrackers

UPDATE:  (4:00pm)

Reinforcements have been brought in from enlightened places like Salem, and the cops are really rolling up with rubber bullets, tear gas, and what not.  Another busload of cops is heading in.  More news later; the protesters are heading right here to Park Ave.

 

Bowing to the bleatings of The Oregonian and the same dozen or so cranky Dittoheads that fill their letters section, Mayor Sam Adams decided to, well, make a complete ass of himself.  Clearly taking cues from authoritarian Democrats in other cities, he went ahead and announced that Occupy Portland would have to vacate Chapman and Lownsdale Squares, located on either side of the elk statue above.  As elsewhere, Occupy had essentially become “home” to Portland’s legions of homeless youth, with all the disorder that entails, giving the city and the police all the excuse they needed to shut down the camp.  Of course, having an excuse to do something isn’t the same as having the ability, and even with the entire police force on hand, the task proved laughably impossible.

Though the camp had dwindled over the last few days to barely more than a hundred souls huddled in pelting rain by Saturday afternoon, when we arrived about fifteen minutes before the “deadline,” thousands of people filled not just the parks themselves, but the sidewalks on both sides of the surrounding streets.  Aside from a few drunken frat boy types jeering at the “hippies,” the mayor and police were clearly about as popular as crabs in a whorehouse.  It was so glaringly obvious that any attempt to reclaim the parks was doomed to failure, we could have left right then, but stayed because the whole thing was just so much fun.  Though the neighborhood bars were all (foolishly) closed for the evening, relinquishing what would have been land office business in favor of completely unfounded fear, the atmosphere was not unlike Times Square on New Year’s Eve.

Clearly relishing playing  Bugs Bunny to Mayor Sam’s Elmer Fudd, we protesters quickly realized we weren’t protesting, but celebrating.  Circling motorists honked and waved their support as a hundred or so cyclists rode lazy circles around the parks on typical Portland tall bikes and fixies; a group of National Lawyers’ Guild representatives chatted and laughed amongst themselves, confident their services were wholly unnecessary, which they were.

Even the weather cooperated; heavy evening rain dwindled to barely a mist, all but inviting the less committed to take a stand with the stalwarts, and certainly diminishing somewhat the grumpiness of the cops.  Though two news choppers hovered uselessly overhead (the cover of trees made aerial shots all but impossible), it was abundantly clear they weren’t going to get any tape that would make it into the news. The “reporter” from the local Fox affiliate, a glamorous young thing in pancake and parka, looked both bored and disappointed, which naturally pleased me no end.

After an hour or so, more people were still arriving, so we felt like it was safe to slip away; this morning when I woke up the first thing I heard was choppers (don’t those things ever run out of gas?) and I knew that #Occupy’s victory was as complete as was Mayor Adams’ humiliation.  The Oregonian glumly confirmed it.  Well, boo f*cking hoo.  Yes, the grass looked like hell, but democracy survived to fight another day.

4 Comments

  1. That’s a beautiful thing Hag.

    • cocktailhag says:

      I spoke a bit too soon; they brought in more cops (from redneck towns…) and are threatening pepper spray and rubber bullets, as we speak. Here. The only good news is that it looks like they’re heading to Park Ave.
      This sucks.

  2. sysprog says:

    Will Bunch tweets

    http://twitter.com/#!/Will_Bunch/status/135859357819740161

    @Will_Bunch
    Will Bunch

    It’s a shame when the name of a great
    beer is tarnished by a stale politician
    @MayorSamAdams #OccupyPortland

    20 minutes ago via web