PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Night after night for nearly two months, protesters have taken to the streets of Portland, Oregon, for demonstrations against racial injustice that have devolved into vandalism and clashes with authorities.
Long after such unrest subsided in other cities, small groups of protesters in Portland continued to set fires, spray graffiti on public buildings and battle officers.
The continued conflict prompted soul-searching in the progressive city, which became increasingly polarized over how to handle it.
More recently, the Trump administration’s decision to call in federal agents to help protect the federal courthouse — the focus of much protest activity — has galvanized many in Portland anew. Protests have again swelled and attracted a broader base in a city that’s increasingly unified and outraged about the use of federal officers.
The clashes have continued, with some protesters trying to break into the courthouse, while authorities respond with tear gas and projectiles.
But also prominent in the new crowds are groups like the Wall of Moms and PDX Dad Pod, self-described parents who have shown up by the hundreds each night since the weekend, wearing yellow T-shirts and bicycle helmets and ski goggles for protection.