They’re shocked that antifa attacks them. Reporters with The Oregonian, The Portland Tribune, freelance photographers, and a local TV station reporter and crew complain they’ve been attacked and/or threatened by antifa and Black Lives Matter activists at the so-called Red House Autonomous Zone. This is the spot along Mississippi Avenue in North Portland where armed insurrectionists have taken over a neighborhood to stop a foreclosure of a house – in a foreclosure that actually happened two years ago.
The stunned reporters expect understanding, appeasement from the mob, help from official Portland, and appreciation of their constitutionally protected, God-given right to cover the news.
They’re late. Michael Strickland and Andy Ngo want to know where this same mainstream media have been. Where were the appeals to the constitution and help from official Portland in 2016 and 2019 respectively, when Strickland and Ngo were attacked by antifa thugs? Where were capital “J” Journalists when Strickland was sent to jail and Ngo was sent to the hospital because of attacks by antifa?
The Oregonian reported that troubles began almost immediately for reporters covering the takeover of the house and the streets surrounding it.
The problems for reporters began almost as soon as demonstrators on Tuesday clashed with sheriff’s deputies and police, who had come to serve an eviction notice and help secure the property.
The activist group PNW Youth Liberation Front set forth a rationale for limits on journalists in a tweet Thursday. “The space at the Red House is an active eviction blockade,” it said. “If you enter that space not to defend the Kinney family, but to livestream or film the risks that others are taking for your personal gain, then you are a guest. If you aren’t respectful, you will be an unwelcome one.”
The newspaper was shocked that a KATU-TV news crew was stopped and attacked for videoing the armed insurrection.
Hours after police retreated from the area Tuesday morning, several masked demonstrators surrounded KATU television journalists Genevieve Reaume and Ric Peavyhouse as they entered the barricaded zone to interview occupants.
Video shows the demonstrators used umbrellas to block the reporters from filming and made multiple verbal threats.
One of them knocked Reaume’s phone from her hand and shattered it on the ground, she said in an interview.
The reporter’s hand was stomped when she reached for her now-broken phone on the ground.
Anyway, here’s what my camera caught today. When I saw Ric getting surrounded, I took out my phone to record. Within seconds it gets knocked from my hand. pic.twitter.com/W37dlwkQv2
— Genevieve Reaume (@GenevieveReaume) December 9, 2020
Sadly, the reporter expected appeasement when she told the members of the mob, “Hey you guys, this is our job.” Instead, one of them responded, “Well, this is our life,” slapped her phone to the ground and stomped it.
Freelance photographer Alex Milan Tracy was threatened when he showed up to take photos for clients. He got video of the Portland Police being chased away.
Police continue to get pushed back, a protester with a fire extinguisher covers a vehicle as people fight back. pic.twitter.com/drvWXhXNMq
— Alex Milan Tracy (@AlexMilanTracy) December 8, 2020
He hasn’t posted any video on his account since December 8, the first day of the armed takeover of the neighborhood.
He told The Oregonian, that reporters should be able to cover events happening in public. You don’t say?
“It’s pure insanity to keep the media from working in a public space,” said Alex Milan Tracy, a longtime freelance photojournalist who was subjected to threats for documenting police and protester action near the house.
The media’s sudden interest in the rights of journalists, freelance and otherwise, prompts many questions.
Where are the same shocked reporters as antifa BLM activists threaten Ngo’s life at nearly every one of their demonstrations?
“One, two, three, f— Andy Ngo!”
Antifa write my name on a sign & set it on fire inside the Portland autonomous zone. Dustin Ferreira asks if someone has a milkshake, referencing how after antifa beat me last year, they threw shakes at my bleeding face. pic.twitter.com/xk4uWyrzO1
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) December 11, 2020
There is a standing order for his beating or worse by local antifa if he’s seen at a protest.
Where's the media's concern about 1st amendment rights when this happens? pic.twitter.com/Ohp9iLZ93y
— Victoria Taft – Parler, Minds, Facebook, 5VTShow (@VictoriaTaft) December 13, 2020
When Ngo was subjected to antifa’s milkshake attack and beating, which sent him to the hospital with a brain bruise, where was the defense about his First Amendment rights on a public street?
Ngo told PJ Media he has the same question. “Why were you all silent when I was beaten for providing the honest coverage you wouldn’t do in the past few years?”
Ngo knows what could happen to him if he tries to defend himself at a protest. Just look at Strickland’s case.
Videographer Michael Strickland, whose work was seen nationally, was attacked twice in July 2016 by antifa and Black Lives Matter activists who decided his YouTube channel, Laughing at Liberals, made them look bad. They jumped him, and when he retreated but didn’t leave, they conspired to attack him again. When the mob came back, he pulled out his gun and held them off without firing a shot or even getting his finger close to the trigger. He probably saved his life. He was jailed for it.
I was convicted of 21 counts after antifa terrorists targeted and attacked me in 2016, and I defended myself against them. My case is now headed to the Supreme Court. Help me fight for all of our rights! https://t.co/WXbBpYaeAK
— Laughing At Liberals (@LaughAtLibs) October 22, 2020
He’s a freelance journalist, but the MSM never came to his aid. Neither did the ACLU.
In full disclosure, I have been following the Strickland story since it happened and have produced an ongoing podcast series about his case.
The mainstream media are shocked that #antifa and #blm assault them for trying to cover the #RHAZ #RedHouseOnMississippi armed insurrection.
Why are you surprised? Worse, where have you been? https://t.co/cyXP2QTvxs
— Victoria Taft – Parler, Minds, Facebook, 5VTShow (@VictoriaTaft) December 13, 2020
Strickland’s First and Second Amendment rights were taken away because of Multnomah County’s prosecution of him. His self-defense arguments fell on deaf ears. As I reported at PJ Media, Strickland’s conviction was upheld by the Oregon Appeals Court and now is possibly headed for the U.S. Supreme Court.
Where were these champions of journalism when Strickland went to jail for pulling his gun to stop an attack launched because of journalism? In both cases, the MSM didn’t lift a finger. In fact, if they said anything at all they dismissed the two as fringe reporters. They all but said they deserved it.
The Oregonian story attempts to sidle up to antifa and BLM protesters by saying that they were among the media roughed up by police during the 100-plus days of rioting in downtown Portland.
During the height of racial justice and police reform demonstrations this summer, protesters and journalists frequently found themselves in the crosshairs of police, who routinely employed aggressive tactics as they sought to quell the nightly unrest.
Police shoved, tear-gassed and shot rubber bullets at journalists trying to document protesters’ and police conduct.
Journalists carrying press passes and with the word “press” in large letters on their clothing were nevertheless forced out of protest zones by police, and some activists played up that conduct as outrageous on their social media platforms.
What the newspaper failed to note was that antifa and BLM rioters pretended to be journalists and wore similar press badges.
This is a militant antifa who masquerades as a journalist. He was one of the secret instructors for Rose City Antifa members. I asked editors at @NBCNewsTHINK if they were aware of this when they published his writing defending antifa. They ignored me. pic.twitter.com/RKwCjdEUWj
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) December 10, 2020
First they came for Mike Strickland. Then all the speakers on campus. Then Andy Ngo. As Portland Police and Mayor Ted Wheeler whistle past the graveyard in hopes the armed totalitarians who took over a neighborhood listen to reason, all you have to do is look at what they’ve already done. Just ask journalists Mike Strickland and Andy Ngo. They’ll tell you.
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UPDATED Showdown in Portland: Antifa and BLM Hold Neighborhood Hostage, Build ‘Autonomous Zone,’ and Attack Police Trying to Stop Them