Hybridization of different instruments both human and traditional can lead to some pretty badass things. Like flutebox’n, most creative things I have seen so far this year. But it’s only March.
Yesterday evening I was just a normal guy going to get dinner in Portland, when I was returning to my car which was parked at the corner of Hawthorne and 49th I walked into the middle of a heated anti-police protest being carried out by a group of about 30-40 vocal protesters. This is my first hand account citizen witness of the protest incident as it unfolded. Here are links to all of my witness photography of this protest on flickr and all of the videos I shot of the protest on Vimeo.
Prelude to a Random Protest
I was working all day and up into the evening on Tuesday March 23rd on my laptop at cafe on Hawthorne. I drove up and parked my car the the corner of 49th & Hawthorne walked up to the Sapphire Hotel and ordered dinner to go. I got my dinner and walked back down to my car, but as I crossed the street I noticed that something was going down on Hawthorne. A black line of people were silhouetted in the night against a backdrop of red and blue flashing lights, they were advancing towards me. I hopped in my car, set my to-go dinner on the passenger seat and quickly pulled my car off onto the side street parking it there, as I did I could see in the rear view protesters rapidly approaching and heard shouting.
Citizens of Portland, Carry a Camera
I felt in my gut that something important was happening or going to happen. So I grabbed my camera out of my bag, locked my car stepped out to the corner of the street and just started shooting the protest. The protesters turned off of Hawthorne Blvd onto on 49th Street headed into a residential area. I think it is important to say here that I have no knowledge of what occurred with the protest or the police up to this point.
The Protesters Turn onto 49th
There was a lot of police following them marked cars, unmarked cars, motorcycles and officers on foot. I estimated the group of protesters to be about 30-40 in number and they were on foot, skateboards and bicycle. As the group of protesters rounded the corner onto 49th a few of them knocked trash cans and a street sign from the side of Tanker Bar out into the street to block the police cars who were driving very close behind them. At this point I figured out what the protests were about, because I overheard two people who were watching talking about the Police the fatal shooting and of a man with at the Hoyt Arboretum.
Some people came out of the bar to see what happened and one woman commented
“Well that is a good way to get yourself arrested.” – A Bystander
A police officer stepped out of his patrol vehicle and threw the sign from the Tanker back onto the side walk, then resumed following the protesters up 49th Street. You can see this here in Video 1 -
Why not just walk to the sidewalk an place the sign back where it belonged? A few Portlanders did put the signs and the trashcans back on the side of the building. At this point I decided to follow the protest, photograph and shoot video of it.
The Second Protest In Two Days
The protesters were chanting angry anti-police slogans like this:
“FU*K THE POLICE! NO JUSTICE NO PEACE!” – The Protesters
“Cops! Pigs! Murders!” – The Protesters
Here you can see, hear the chants and the police ordering the protesters out of the street, threatening that anyone could be arrested and anytime here in Video 2 -
Portland Policeman Hits Protester With Motorcycle
This video contains footage of exactly how the anti-police protest escalated. The protesters were walking in the street on 49th/50th Ave, the lead line of police on motorcycles who were following began to rev their motorbike engines accelerating up too close behind the protesters.
WATCH FROM 0:30-01:22 TO SEE THE ASSAULTS
Shocked witnesses, concerned citizens, photographers began shouting at the Portland Police -
“Look what you did! Look what you did! I saw you” – witnesses
“Are you going to run people over?” – witness
“You are running people over! Look at you.” – witness
Here is some more footage of the same moments of the assault taken from a different angle by a East Portland KATU news.
A Portland Motorcycle Policeman escalated the situation at the protest to the point of violence by running into a protester with his motorcycle, then a protester retaliated, hurtling his bicycle at and striking the Police Officer. The man who allegedly assaulted the Portland Motorcycle Policeman was named Joel David Dow. He was charged with assault second degree and assaulting a public safety officer, bail was set in the ballpark of $290,000.
The Portland Police Arresting The Suspect
This is the scene of the suspect being arrested for Police Assault in the middle of a residential neighborhood in Southeast Portland.
Another citizen journalist recording the arrest right up close and personal.
The police with big red bottles of mace or pepper spray.
Portland residents watching the event unfold from their front yards and lawns as the PDX Police confer.
March Continued to Police Building On Burnside
The protesters took the march to the police literally. They marched too and stopping right in front of the SE police traffic division building on Burnside. The police set up a perimeter, guarding the station. The protesters rallied around the station Flag, periodically chanting and drumming.
PDX Police in Front of The SE Traffic Division
The Police Glaring At Me
Protesters Camped Out In Front Of The Traffic Division
Protesters Rallying Around The Flag At The Police Division
Marching On As The Police Began To Flank The Protesters
Protesters Marching Away from the Police Building on Burnside
Black Masks, Black Flags
Protesters Marching Down Burnside
More Footage of the Protest
Portland Police Brutality Protest and Assault 5 from Todd Pitt on Vimeo.
More protesters chanting “Cops, Pigs, Murders!” and lots of police on motorbikes. Three of them circled around me while I was shooting this clip.
One observer in this video was singing the star spangled banner, very badly but made his point. Freedom?
“Oh say can you see, by the dawns early light…”
Cops cops more cops and cops with mace canisters. Chanting.
The Police arresting the man who threw his bike at the police officer and neighbors coming out of their houses watching the arrest.
Protest Route Through SE Portland
- East On Hawthorne Blvd (where I encountered the protest)
- Left Turn North on SE 49th Ave, over Belmont Street
- Right Turn East for one block SE Stark Street
- Left Turn North on SE 50th Ave
- Left Turn West on E Burnside Street
- Stopped in front of the SE Portland Police Department.
- Continued West down E Burnside Street down past 44th Ave (discontinued following Protest)
Links to Other Media About The 3/23/2010 Protest
- Heated protest against police shooting erupts
- Emergency Response to another Police Murder
- Police Abuse march for Police Accountability
- Portland Police Abuse Protest for Police Accountability 3/23/10
- Portland man arrested for police assault at shooting protest
- The Portland Mercury Anti-Cop Protest Turns out…
What the Protest Was About
- Portland police shoot and kill transient, spark community protest
- Police release name of man fatally shot by Portland Officer
I want to make a few things very clear. I was first person witness, a citizen journalist by happenstance and I am not affiliated with any government organization, the cops and was not a part of the protesters or the protest group who organized this event. I just saw what happened. All of the videos and images I took are original and unedited, you can use them but must link to the sources and this post.
“Being your own boss sounds great until you realize that there is no one to blame for your failure but yourself.” – Anonymous
I thought that this quote is pretty spot on when it comes to freelancing and startups. Good thing about this truth is that I am my own worst critic. No boss or peer has ever criticized me harsher or held me to a higher standard then I have.
“It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything.” – Tyler Durden, Fight Club
I love this quote. It rings true, I think it is the best line from Fight Club.
Last night while I was working on some web stuff I came across a cache of badass music mashups. Instead of sending you cheap plastic trinkets from China which are just going to end up in land fills….I figured I would spin you some rad music mashups on my newly recreated Blip.fm station so you all can have a Merry Mash-Mass!
Or just to: http://blip.fm/toddpitt
Merry Mash-Mass Mix 09′
- “Galvanize The Empire” (Chemical Brothers vs John Williams) for Mr. Klaus http://blip.fm/~ib2i0
- “Confused Tobaco Bump” (Bonde do Role vs New Order vs Spank Rock/Alice in Chains) for Mrs. Klaws http://blip.fm/~ib3z1
- Led Snooppelin “Drop It Like It’s a Whole Lotta Love” (Led Zeppelin vs Snoop Dog) for Jordan S. http://blip.fm/~ib5op
- “Low Addict” (Plump DJs vs Flo Rida) for Angus Pangus http://blip.fm/~ib68o
- “Poker Face Just What I Needed” (The Cars vs Lady Gaga) for Alexis Rizzo M. http://blip.fm/~ib76z
- “Rehab Can’t Help Myself “ (Amy Winehouse vs Four Tops) for Jessica J. http://blip.fm/~ib7vr
- “Ooh La La Summer Nights” (The Wiseguys vs. Olivia Newton John & John Travolta) for Dad & Karen http://blip.fm/~ib8mi
- Gorilla Cakez – “Never Feel Good” for Kimba G. http://blip.fm/~ib9vi
- “Boulevard of Broken Songs” (Green Day vs Oasis vs Travis vs Aerosmith vs Eminem) for Derek Y. http://blip.fm/~ibabo
- Death Cab for Maddy “Hung Up On Soul” (Death Cab For Cutie vs Madonna) for Mahdi G. http://blip.fm/~ibaxv
- New Donna – “Bizarre Light Triangle” (New Order vs Madonna) for Sophia N. & Mu http://blip.fm/~ibbzr
- “All I Want You To Do Is Be My Reckoner” (Justin Timberlake vs. Radiohead) for Kyoko K. http://blip.fm/~ibd7q
- “Independent Room” (Fugazi vs. Destiny’s Child) for Immi-Chan http://blip.fm/~ibdq7
- “Insane, Medicated Hand” (NIN vs Queens of The Stone Age) for Nikolai W. http://blip.fm/~ibej0
- “Dontcha Seether” (Veruca Salt vs. Pussycat Dolls) For Janis H. http://blip.fm/~ibfj8
- “Walking With a Ghost in Paris” 2007 Remix (Mylo vs Tegan & Sara) for Wendy & Carrie http://blip.fm/~ibgzp
- “Tender Umbrella” (Rihanna vs. General Public) for my awesome sista Jordan F. http://blip.fm/~ibhej
- “Millionaire Galang” (Plastilina Mosh vs M.I.A.) for my man Paulito G. http://blip.fm/~ibi5b
- “Satisfaction Skank” (Fatboy Slim vs Rolling Stones) for Mom & H. http://blip.fm/~ibijz
- “Another One Bites Da Funk” (Daft Punk vs Queen) for Meg M. http://blip.fm/~ibizi
- “Machine Gun Shelter” (Commodores vs. Rolling Stones) for my cuz Nick K. http://blip.fm/~ibjeb
- “The Way I Keep Me Hanging On” (Timbaland vs The Supremes) for my sis Junko K. http://blip.fm/~ibjmk
- “Hella Dare You To Smoke” (Gorillaz vs. No Doubt vs. Deep Purple) for Andrew P. http://blip.fm/~ibjvc
- “Paper Planes Fly High Like” (M.I.A. vs Party Ben) for Kevin B. http://blip.fm/~ib68o
- “God Put A Smile Upon My Face” (Coldplay vs Punx) for my lil’ man Ashland http://blip.fm/~ibk16
- “Laktos Scientist” (Coldplay vs Sebastian Ingrosso) for my mate Tom D. http://blip.fm/~ibk5x
- “Killing For Love Remix” (Jose Gonzalez vs. Cirez D) for Mike, Mary & lil man Killian http://blip.fm/~ibkcv
- The Snow Police “Every Car You Chase” (The Police vs Snow Patrol) for Tony P. http://blip.fm/~ibkus
As many of you know I am somewhat obsessed with various aspects of photography, one of which being images of clouds & skies. So I have been shooting the what I see here in the beautiful skies of Portland. This is the first in what I hope will be along series of photographs of what lies above here in PDX.
Cloud & Sky – 2009_1928_2
If you want to see the rest of the world, just stop & look up.
Cloud & Sky – 2009_0990_2
I have identified a few common themes & photographic preoccupations in my work so I am starting a few new series riffing on these themes, which I will be creating, contributing in the coming year. Also, I am still working on a naming system / names for the hundreds of cloud photos I take every year. I might update them later, numbers will have to work for now.