Texas — Unprecedented federal action is currently taking place in Portland. Two months after the horrific death of George Floyd, protests are still being held nationwide. Despite the overwhelming lack of meaningful or substantial action, President Trump has decided the protests in Portland have become unnecessary and a threat to the security of Confederate statues everywhere. Unidentified federal agents in unmarked vans are kidnapping people off the streets - not just protesters, but anyone even suspected to be involved. This is a shocking violation of probable cause and due process and an astounding overreach by the federal government.
Texas College Democrats condemns in the strongest possible manner this federal invasion and occupation of Portland.
In addition to the lack of action on racial justice, those protesting in Portland have every right to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, and for the federal government to intimidate, threaten, assault, and unlawfully and unnecessarily arrest protesters is a direct violation of the First, Fourth, Fifth, and Eighth Amendments.
President Trump and federal agents claim to be there for the purpose of protecting federal property, namely the courthouse in the city center. But charges of graffiti and broken windows do not warrant hundreds of agents firing tear gas and rubber bullets, nor are they any basis for the arrest of any person suspected to be involved.
This federal occupation, opposed by nearly every official in Portland and the state of Oregon, sets an incredibly dangerous precedent, both for the power of the federal branch and the infringements on the rights of citizens. President Trump has now announced plans to deploy federal agents to numerous other cities nationwide. These are the actions of a fascist police, not the so-called land of the free. Republicans and Democrats alike should be united in their opposition to these heinous actions and policies in order to protect the integrity of our nation.