Federal agents beat a Navy veteran in Portland.

Last Saturday night, Christopher David, a Navy veteran and graduate of the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, was walking in Portland and came upon an odd sight. He saw federal agents, in full tactical gear, heavily-armed, looking like the operators we drop into terrorist havens in Afghanistan, patrolling the streets of an American city. Detaining Americans. Hustling them, unexplained, into rented minivans, 

Is Mr. David a masked ninja of anarchy? No. Was he throwing rocks or carrying bottles of gasoline? No. Mr. David was standing there, clearly unarmed, clearly not a threat, looking on and curious. In a Navy sweatshirt.

Then things got interesting. A federal agent with a gas mask, body armor and camouflage, bristling with weapons and tactical gear, approaches Mr. David, winds up, and beats Mr. David repeatedly with his truncheon. Now Mr. David has a broken hand, but he doesn’t move. Not a muscle. So another agent sprays him with pepper spray.

I don’t care how cynical you have become about our country. If you have a drop of American blood in your veins, your soul dies a little as you watch heavily armed federal agents beat an innocent Navy veteran

Any American who hasn’t seen that video needs to watch it right now.  

And now President Trump is threatening to send more heavily armed federal agents to New York, Chicago, Detroit and Baltimore.

This is important. Because democracies die. But they do not die fast.

They die because people come to believe the media is the enemy of the people. They die because the President’s supporters are more given over to the President than to the rule of law. They die because citizens become used to the sight of federal agents acting not to protect them, but to attack them.

We have been warned. Do not be silent. Do not be complacent. Do not think this is in any way normal.

Organize. Advocate. Most importantly, vote. Our democracy depends upon it.

Jim

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