Thursday, September 24, 2020

Oregon Gov. Brown on Ending Portland Protests: 'It Will Take Time' to 'Eradicate the Racism' in Systems

On Friday’s “PBS NewsHour,” Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (D) expressed concern that protests in Portland are continuing despite an emergency declaration, and responded to a question on the timeframe for ending the protests by stating, “we know that these protests are caused by folks who have been experiencing systemic racism in this state and in this country for decades, for centuries. And it will take time,” to “eradicate” the racism that exists in various systems.

Brown said that the protests continuing despite the declaration of a state of emergency is “certainly a concern. I’ve worked with our community partners, our business community, and elected leadership to craft a statement of Oregon leaders, saying that this violence needs to come to an end. We are continuing to have conversations with folks in the community about how we can tackle the underlying racism issues that are really the underlying cause of the situation, and we are continuing to take action.”

Host Judy Woodruff then asked, “So, in a sentence, how confident are you that there will be an end to these protests in coming days?”

Brown responded that this is a “really challenging question. Dr. King said it best, riots are the language of the unheard. So, we know that these protests are caused by folks who have been experiencing systemic racism in this state and in this country for decades, for centuries. And it will take time, frankly, to eradicate the racism in our criminal justice system, in our law enforcement system, in our healthcare system, in our educational system. Violence does nothing. It answers nothing. It solves nothing. But I do think that it is a distraction from the critically important work that we need to do to tackle the systemic racism in our institutions, cultures, and state.”

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Ian Hanchett

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