[pjw] ACTION: Portland Mayor calls for National Guard in Portland

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Mon Jun 1 16:06:13 EDT 2020

Hello Peace and Justice Works and Portland Copwatch supporters

This morning at a news conference, Mayor and US Attorney called on the 
Governor to send in the National Guard.

This is a sad overlap between Peace and Justice Works' anti-war and police 
accountability work in the worst way, the actual militarization of 

Mayor Wheeler is claiming the National Guard would just be used in limited 
capacity to do things like guard buildings, but that doesn't really make 
it any better.

National Veterans For Peace put out the below statement in solidarity with
Minneapolis on Saturday. While it is specific to Minnesota, it makes many 
points that we can echo here.

We do not need to see the goverment fall back on its usual response,
showing people that violence is wrong by engaging in even greater
violence. Contact these officials and say "No Militarized Response in
Portland! No National Guard as Law Enforcement!"

  Mayor Ted Wheeler
    <mayorwheeler at portlandoregon.gov>

  US Attorney Billy Williams
    <Bill.Williams at usdoj.gov>

  Governor Kate Brown

It is especially important that we oppose this move just a month after
the 50th anniversary of Kent State.

dan handelman
peace and justice works/portland copwatch


Veterans Call on the Minnesota National Guard to Stand Down

     Veterans For Peace calls for the immediate withdrawal of the Minnesota
     National Guard. We are appalled to see military weapons, vehicles and
     equipment once again deployed in U.S. cities to control community
     members who are reacting to a long history of state-sanctioned
     violence. When an already embattled community is subjected to
     militarized intimidation, by design, their environment becomes a war
     zone. We call on all those who are serving with the National Guard to
     refuse to serve violent and racist interests.

     Veterans For Peace denounces the ongoing instances of police violence
     against Black bodies and people of color, this time resulting in the
     killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We also stand in
     opposition to the State of Minnesota's and the Minneapolis police
     force's militarized response to the right to protest.

     Learning nothing from the now seemingly endless examples of ineffective
     attempts to silence protests with militarized violence--from Ferguson
     to Baltimore to New Orleans to Standing Rock--political figures
     continue to call on more military to quell the powerful resistance seen
     from the people in Minneapolis who demand justice. We continue to see
     the escalation of threats of violence from those in power--from Trump's
     tweets threatening to shoot protestors to the governor's decision to
     send in the national guard.

     As Veterans For Peace, we know that increased militarization in our
     communities will never bring peace. We know that peace is only achieved
     with a strong commitment to justice. As veterans who served in various
     wars, we know there is a connection between increasing racist violence
     in the United States and the massive indiscriminate killing of hundreds
     of thousands of people in other lands. Growing racism against black,
     brown and Muslim people in the United States is a reflection of the
     racism that justifies killing non-white people abroad. The U.S.
     military deliberately uses racism to motivate young men and women to

     As veterans, we know what it's like to be called to a "duty" that goes
     against our conscience. We urge all current National Guard members to
     lay down their weapons and refuse to fight against their neighbors and
     fellow community members. We urge you all to be fully informed as you
     make profound choices with possibly serious consequences. We urge any
     troops facing possible deployment to Minneapolis or already there to
     contact the National Lawyers Guild Military Law Task Force at (619)
     463-2369 and/or help at militarylawhelp.com for referral to a civilian
     attorney to discuss your options.

     Our nation's consistent option for militarization and the use of deadly
     force when it is not needed--at home and abroad--is exactly why we find
     ourselves in this situation. It makes no sense to think more violence
     and trauma heaped upon the Minneapolis community will quell the unrest.
     The Governor has moved beyond using a militarized police force to using
     the military. He is relying on intimidation and fear to end this. The
     only thing that will quiet this storm is justice.

     Ways to take action:

     Donate to organizations on the ground:
       * Minnesota Freedom Fund
       * Black Visions Collective
       * Reclaim the Block

     Sign this Open Letter
       * Open Letter to Veterans to Recently Activated Minnesota Troops from
         About Face: Veterans Against the War

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