04 21 2015
  1:19 am  
     •     
40 Years of Service

The board of the Mental Health Association of Portland do not endorse the tactics taken this evening by protesters in the streets of downtown Portland. We don't endorse violence in any form – verbal or physical, active or threatened, against persons or property. Simply being young, frustrated, over-educated or ignorant isn't a sufficient excuse.
But we understand the anger of tonight's protesters and we understand where it started.
It started on September 17, 2006 when three police officers, recognizing they had brutally beaten a man a fraction of their cumulative size, and in front of a dozen witnesses, began to lie to witnesses.
They said James Chasse was homeless. He was not. They said he had urinated on a tree. He had not. They said he was a drug dealer, that he had drugs in his possession. He was not, he did not. They said they knew him. They did not.
The American Medical Rescue team sent James to jail not to a hospital.
The jail nurse refused to admit him, ordered him taken to a hospital.
Two of the three policeman who beat James drove him to the farthest Portland hospital.
Then they let him die in the back of the squad car.
For the past forty-four months the city of Portland, represented by its City Council, its police bureau, and the police union, have stumbled through a public relations nightmare, thereby drawn out a travesty of justice. First they tried to blame the victim, then they blamed the mental health system, then framed 26 rib fractures as an accident.
What we wanted for James Chasse was immediate accountability; was justice. Left unsettled for three and a half years, the result is now out of the control of politicians and police, and into the hands of outliers. Add Aaron Campbell, an innocent man shot in the back while surrendering. Add Jack Collins, drunk, menacing and perhaps demented, shot by an officer acting alone and with questionable tactics.
Our organization is interested in the welfare of these men. Chasse had a diagnosis of schizophrenia before he was beaten by Kyle Nice, Chris Humphreys and Bret Burton. Campbell was held in a psychiatric hospital after a suicide attempt a year before he was shot in the back by Ron Frashour. Collins had a long history of alcoholism and mental illness.
He had confessed a crime in order to get some help just 11 days before Jason Walters shot him four times.
The board of the Mental Health Association of Portland holds the tonight's protesters entirely responsible for the damage they caused.
Every newspaper box, every window, every bump and bruise. Justice for them will be swift.
But we hold the City Council, the police bureau, and the police union entirely responsible for evading reform and thereby degrading the reputation and integrity of our police.
No wonder they're hated, resulting in both responsible and irresponsible citizen protests in churches, public rooms and, finally, in the streets.
Again, impunity is a poison to government – as deadly as hemlock. The anger is just a preliminary paralyzing symptom. Allowing two sets of rules, one for the police and another for everyone else, is irresponsible and shows a reckless disregard for the social infrastructure of our community.

Jason Renaud is the co-founder for the mental health association of Portland and is a candidate for Dan Saltzman's city council seat, No. 3.


Pacific NW Carpenters Union

Commenting Guidelines

  • Keep it clean: Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language
  • No personal attacks: We reserve the right to remove offensive comments
  • Be truthful: Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything
  • Be nice: No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person
  • Help us: If you see an abusive post, let us know at info@theskanner.com
  • Keep to topic: We will remove irrelevant posts and spam
  • Share with us: We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts; the history behind an article

Recently Published by The Skanner News

  • Default
  • Title
  • Date
  • Random
  • When should we use military to enforce US goals? NASHUA, N.H. (AP) — Rand Paul lashed out Saturday at military hawks in the Republican Party in a clash over foreign policy dividing the packed GOP presidential field. Paul, a first-term senator from Kentucky who favors a smaller U.S. footprint in the world, said that some of his Republican colleagues would do more harm in international affairs than would leading Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton. "The other Republicans will criticize the president and Hillary Clinton for their foreign policy, but they would just have done the same thing — just 10 times over," Paul said on the closing day of a New Hampshire GOP conference that brought about 20 presidential prospects to the first-in-the-nation primary state. "There's a group of folks in our party who would have troops in six countries right now, maybe more," Paul said. Foreign policy looms large in the presidential race as the U.S. struggles to resolve diplomatic and military conflicts across the globe. The GOP presidential class regularly rails against President Barack Obama's leadership on the world stage, yet some would-be contenders have yet to articulate their own positions, while others offered sharply different visions. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, whose brother, President George W. Bush, authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, declined to say whether he would have done anything different then. Yet Jeb Bush acknowledged a shift in his party against new military action abroad. "Our enemies need to fear us, a little bit, just enough for them to deter the actions that create insecurity," Bush said earlier in the conference. He said restoring alliances "that will create less likelihood of America's boots on the ground has to be the priority, the first priority of the next president." The GOP's hawks were well represented at the event, led by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who has limited foreign policy experience but articulated a muscular vision during his Saturday keynote address. Walker said the threats posed by radical Islamic terrorism won't be handled simply with "a couple bombings." "We're not going to wait till they bring the fight to us," Walker said. "We're going to bring the fight to them and fight on their soil." South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham addressed the question of putting U.S. troops directly in the battle against the Islamic State group militants by saying there is only one way to defeat the militants: "You go over there and you fight them so they don't come here." Texas Sen. Ted Cruz suggested an aggressive approach as well. "The way to defeat ISIS is a simple and clear military objective," he said. "We will destroy them." Businesswoman Carly Fiorina offered a similar outlook. "The world is a more dangerous and more tragic place when America is not leading. And America has not led for quite some time," she said. Under Obama, a U.S.-led coalition of Western and Arab countries is conducting regular airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. also has hundreds of military advisers in Iraq helping Iraqi security forces plan operations against the Islamic State, which occupies large chunks of northern and western Iraq. Paul didn't totally reject the use of military force, noting that he recently introduced a declaration of war against the Islamic State group. But in an interview with The Associated Press, he emphasized the importance of diplomacy. He singled out Russia and China, which have complicated relationships with the U.S., as countries that could contribute to U.S. foreign policy interests. "I think the Russians and the Chinese have great potential to help make the world a better place," he said. "I don't say that naively that they're going to, but they have the potential to." Paul suggested the Russians could help by getting Syrian President Bashar Assad to leave power. "Maybe he goes to Russia," Paul said. Despite tensions with the U.S., Russia and China negotiated alongside Washington in nuclear talks with Iran. Paul has said he is keeping an open mind about the nuclear negotiations. "The people who already are very skeptical, very doubtful, may not like the president for partisan reasons," he said, and "just may want war instead of negotiations."
    Read More
  • Some lawmakers, sensing a tipping point, are backing the parents and teachers who complain about 'high stakes' tests   
    Read More
  • Watch Rachel Maddow interview VA Secretary Robert McDonald  
    Read More
  • Some two thousand people pack halls to hear Trayvon Martin's mom speak   
    Read More
load morehold SHIFT key to load allload all
Carpentry Professionals

PHOTO GALLERY

Calendar

About Us

Breaking News

The Skanner TV

Turn the pages

Portland Opera Showboat 2
The Skanner Photo Archives