Recently a highly controversial slide was found at the end of a PowerPoint presentation used to train police officers in crowd control methods.
A January 14 Willamette Week story, "Portland Police Included 'Prayer of the Alt Knight' Meme in Protest Training Presentation," contains an image of the slide, along with what it said, since the image is kind of hard to read.
“And the Lord said...
Woe be unto you, dirty hippy;
For thou stinketh of patchouli and BO;
For thou talk of Marx, yet know him not;
For thous hast bills, yet have not paid;
For thou hast dreadlocks and white skin.
And so I shall send among you,
My humble servants with hat, and with bat;
That they may christen your heads with hickory,
And anoint your faces with pepper spray.
And once thou hast been cuffed and stuffed;
Once thou has been stitched and bandaged;
Perhaps thou shall learn,
I’m tired of your shit.
Formed as the “tactical defense arm” of the Proud Boys, the Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights (FOAK) has become an accelerant for violence at right-wing rallies.
The group’s founder, repeat-felon Kyle Chapman, organized FOAK after a melee with counter-protestors in Berkeley, California, to “protect and defend our right-wing brethren” through “street activism, preparation, defense and confrontation.” The Proud Boys argue that FOAK is the next “logical step” in the growth of their “pro-Western” movement.
At first it was believed the PowerPoint presentation that included the slide was just part of Portland Police Bureau training.
But yesterday a follow-up Willamette Week story came out, "Controversial Protest PowerPoint May Have Been Presented During Training by Four Oregon Law Enforcement Agencies."
A recent deposition of a commander of the Portland Police Bureau’s now-dissolved Rapid Response Team suggests that the controversial PowerPoint presentation released by city officials last week may have been presented during training jointly taught by four Oregon law enforcement agencies: PPB, the Oregon State Police, the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office and the Salem Police Department.
...The additional law enforcement agencies’ potential involvement or access to the training presentation is significant in part because Oregon State Police and Multnomah County Sheriff’s deputies assisted PPB during several protests in the summer of 2020.
OSP, MCSO and SPD could not be reached immediately for comment.
Well, the Salem Police Department definitely needs to comment on whether anyone from the department was involved in training presentations that included the disgusting slide.
If they were, the next question should be, "What, if anything, did that person, or people, do after viewing the slide?" Did they make an effort to have it removed? Or did they think it was just fine, being a reflection of the hard-nosed attitude police officers should have toward dirty hippies and other protesters?
Those sorts of questions need to be asked and answered, because an Oregonian story is titled "Feds furious that Portland police, city kept them in dark about training slide advocating violence against protesters."
Lawyers from the U.S. Department of Justice on Monday told Portland’s police chief and city attorney to hand over all “original, unredacted” training materials for the Rapid Response Team, furious that the city didn’t make them aware months ago of a team training presentation that included a derogatory slide advocating violence against protesters.
The letter comes just days after the city released a PowerPoint training slide showing a “Prayer of the Alt Knight” -- a meme that uses biblical terms to urge the beating and pepper-spraying of demonstrators derided as “dirty” hippies, and advocates leaving them “cuffed and stuffed” and “stitched and bandaged” to teach them a lesson.
The attorneys wrote that the city of Portland should have reported the crowd-control team’s training presentation to the Justice Department when it was developed, as required by the city’s eight-year-old use-of-force settlement with the federal agency.
Justice Department attorneys Jared D. Hager and R. Jonas Geissler said they were told of the inappropriate material for the first time Thursday night and that the city shared the slideshow with them only hours before the mayor’s office released it to the media Friday afternoon.
They described the training slides -- not just the offensive slide that was inserted at the end -- as having “varying degrees of offensive content, incorrect guidance and false or misleading information.”
So this is a bigger deal than just the single offensive slide.
It appears likely that the Salem Police Department has been involved in crowd control training that, in the words of the Justice Department attorneys, gave incorrect guidance and contained false or misleading information.
At least, that's how it looks given what is known now. Hopefully Salem Police Chief Trevor Womack will be issuing a statement soon about whether any of his officers used the flawed PowerPoint presentation in training.
If they did, why didn't those training officers recognize that the presentation didn't represent best practices for crowd control at protests?