A group of citizens in Portland, Ore., have come together to say enough is enough. After months of riots, spikes in violent crime, and years of inaction on the homeless population, the Coalition to Save Portland has begun to push back on the city’s failed leadership. The coalition has taken several actions to foster frank discussions about the growing problems in Portland, and what actions city leaders should take to correct them. Time will tell if city leaders listen or continue on their radical path.
In a press release, the coalition said,
On Thursday, a group of community leaders and Portland residents announced the formation of Coalition to Save Portland. The Coalition issued the following mission statement: “Our mission is simple: To Save Portland. We are a diverse grassroots coalition of concerned Portlanders who are fed up with the anarchy and policies of appeasement that allow our city to burn. Our goal is to restore a Portland that can maintain law and order while dealing appropriately with bad cops when needed. A Portland that can protect prosperity and peace for everyone. A Portland that is not boarded up, smashed, burned, and covered in graffiti. A Portland that remembers that liberty does not equal anarchy. A Portland that can live together in true harmony.”
Gabe Johnson, one of the co-founders of the coalition, previously made national headlines by pushing back against the riots. Johnson, a 48-year-old black man, lives two blocks from the scene of the worst riots in downtown Portland. Initially, he agreed with the aim of the riots, until he went and saw for himself what was going on. He’s now decided to change his voter registration to non-affiliated after a lifetime of voting for Democrats.
“We have to face facts. Portland is dying. I live so close to the Justice Center that the tear gas has infiltrated my apartment through the air conditioning when police broke up the riots. Explosions at these riots continually interrupt my sleep. This is a natural result of Portland’s failed leadership.”
“It’s not just the riots,” Johnson said. “It’s the fact that arson has increased by 400% in Portland this year. Shootings are up almost 200%. Violent crime is out of control. And our city leaders and prosecutors have a catch-and-release program for rioters and bad actors who have spread the violence all across our city. The members of our coalition have heard endless pleas from Portlanders who need an alternative to vote for in the mayor’s race. Ted Wheeler has shown a complete lack of leadership, while his opponent supports the anarchists of antifa. There has to be a better way.”
The Coalition to Save Portland invited mayoral candidates to offer real solutions, saying, “What Portland’s leaders are doing is not livable and is not sustainable. We want to talk to current leaders about how they will solve Portland’s downward slide. And if they don’t give Portland what it needs to survive, they need to be replaced. It’s that simple. You know in your heart it’s true.”
The local news covered the coalition:
On September 29, the coalition arrived at North Precinct to present a donation to the Portland Police Chaplain’s Association:
Portland Now: North Police Precinct with Gabe Johnson(r) presenting PPB Chaplains with check for 2,500 dollars. Result of fundraising to support first responders. pic.twitter.com/TITgICe4u4
— Michael Yon (@Michael_Yon) September 29, 2020
The Coalition to Save Portland seeks to bring together community leaders who want to create positive change and agree that the city needs more competent leadership.
In response to media requests, the two candidates for mayor gave nondescript answers to the coalition letter, failing to provide specific plans.
While the leadership of Portland continues its failure to provide real solutions, the Coalition to Save Portland is bringing together community leaders, faith leaders, concerned citizens, and the majority of Portlanders who are fed up with the direction the city has taken.
Jeff Reynolds is the author of the book, “Behind the Curtain: Inside the Network of Progressive Billionaires and Their Campaign to Undermine Democracy,” available at www.WhoOwnsTheDems.com. Jeff hosts a podcast at anchor.fm/BehindTheCurtain. You can follow him on Twitter @ChargerJeff, and on Parler at @RealJeffReynolds.