Saturday in the park
Many people in Portlandia are on edge this morning over the right-wing extremist fest that's coming to town around noontime. The last time they staged one of these, one of their boys was killed, and a short time later the killer was killed. People are afraid that the militia types on the right are coming back to get their revenge today. The chatter on the internet has been alarming.
The governor has declared an emergency, which puts the state troopers in charge. And so tear gas is an option, which it might not be if the city police were running the show.
The "patriots" are reportedly going to stage their event at Delta Park on the north edge of the city. The authorities have had the park closed overnight, but it's reopening this morning.
Delta Park is an awkward space. It's up against the freeway, some busy highways, and an outdoor shopping complex, and it isn't an easy place to get into or out of. The Columbia River is nearby. There are few, if any, homes in the vicinity, but there are a lot of homeless people.
The left-wing types who can't resist demonstrating at the same time are gathering at Peninsula Park, which is about three miles from Delta Park.
There were lighted message boards near the freeway last night flashing "Black lives matter" and "Hate has no place here." I'm guessing that somebody hacked the signs to say that, but maybe it's some kind of official statement. It should be.
At one of the previous "proud boy" throwdowns, there were few if any police present to keep the peace. The police chief said he just didn't have personnel available. At least this time, the state police are showing up from the get-go.
But if I had to predict, I'd say that the cops will pound on the lefties and pretty much let the righties get away with almost anything.
Because that's how the police are.
And that's why all this is happening.
It will be an interesting afternoon, for sure. Let's hope it's a dud.