Mike Strickland will go on trial on Monday in a Portland, Oregon courtroom for pulling a gun in self defense as a group of anarchists converged upon him while he covered a Black Lives Matter/Don’t Shoot PDX protest on July 7th.
The prosecution has relied upon the testimony of some of the very same people who were converging on Strickland to come up with its 21 count indictment against the journalist.
The prosecution has relied upon hearsay testimony of at least one of their members that somehow Strickland was a “white nationalist.” This was used to keep him in jail longer after his arrest and raise his bail.
The allegation appears to come from Strickland’s coverage of the Portland Community College “Whiteness Conference” which made national news, thanks to the Portland journalist.
— Laughing At Liberals (@LaughAtLibs) April 10, 2016
But who are these people converging on Strickland? And why do people, who have watched Strickland cover their events over a period of years, now conclude somehow that he’s racist or a bad actor?
I’ll tell you why. They’re upset that the man who runs the social media outpost, “Laughing at Liberals” makes fun of them.
— Laughing At Liberals (@LaughAtLibs) May 15, 2016
— Laughing At Liberals (@LaughAtLibs) June 17, 2016
— Laughing At Liberals (@LaughAtLibs) June 16, 2016
During my interviews with several anarchists over the past few months (interviews which will be rolled out later) it came down to this school yard complaint that they didn’t like the way “Laughing at Liberals” held up the mirror and made them look stupid.
It’s just that simple.
When given a chance by the DA to get back at Strickland they seized upon it. And the DA listened.
This is justice? Hearsay complaints about a guy who hurt your feelings? Converging on the guy who hurt your feelings? And then lying to put him in jail?
I spoke to Penny Okamoto of Ceasefire Oregon, an anti-gun rights group which Strickland covered often. Strickland’s arrest confirmed her fears. She told me she thought he was somehow dangerous but couldn’t tell me why. She complained about how he covered her events, how he sometimes mocked her group, but could not name one time in which Strickland was dangerous.
She has the ear of the DA.
As one professional protester told me, anarchists conspired to ‘get’ Strickland last July 7th:
“There were a bunch of people from Anonymous that walked around and who said they were going up ‘contact’ him walked and all of a sudden I seen him come out of the protest with a group of people behind him. There was yelling back and forth.
Basically [Strickland] was yelling, ‘Stay away from me, stay away from me!’
I believe there were threats toward him.
He’s someone that a lot of activists don’t like.”
I asked why they didn’t like him:
“It goes all the way back to Occupy. He’ll talk about and make fun of protests like that. That’s what people talk about with him. They say he’s an agitator. That if there’s a protest then he’ll find something to make fun of.”
Ben Kerensa came after ‘Occupy.’ So what was his beef with Strickland?
This video was produced after 340,000 plus people looked at another of Strickland’s posts:
They saw Kerensa in the background and couldn’t help note the obvious, that it isn’t necessary for Kerensa to cover his face as an anarchist because he’s the only one who looks like that at Portland protests:
When I talked to the anarchists for an upcoming series of reports, they said it was this video that got Kerensa riled up.
For the record, they thought it was funny.
Is it nice? No. Is it a reason to beat someone up? No. Is it illegal? No.
The night Strickland pulled his gun, Kerensa boasted that he made him to do it.
And Monday, Strickland goes on trial for his freedom–all because of the hurt feelings of some Portland protesters.
Next: Who are Strickland’s other accusers and how Portlanders are getting tired of these protesters.
Please see my other posts on this story: