First the unfortunate news:
“SEATTLE — An antifa supporter being investigated in the fatal shooting of a right-wing activist who was part of a pro-Trump caravan in Portland, Ore., was killed on Thursday night when authorities moved to arrest him, officials said.
The suspect, Michael Forest Reinoehl, 48, was shot by officers from a federal fugitive task force during the encounter in Lacey, Wash., southwest of Seattle, according to four law enforcement officials familiar with the investigation.”
Of course you want the details, but they aren’t available yet. In one important sense, it doesn’t matter. What happened on Thursday night was another martyr was added to the narrative, which means now we have one for each side.
The first would be the Prayer Patriot, or whatever they call themselves, who was slain, apparently by Reinoehl, during that big Trump-a-cade of paint ball shooting supporters who cruised into Portland looking to create trouble, and did. Then the proud member of loosely organized ANTIFA, Reinoehl, becomes the second. (He was proud of the connection and bragged it up at a couple of points. He saw it as an obligation to be as anti-fascist as he could be.)
And this is where it took him.
Now we have everything we need to build counter-narratives with heroes and villains on each side, plenty of violence to juice up the plot, and ongoing conflict that has caused months of turmoil on Portland and now, dead guys.
I predict victim t-shirts within a few days, memorial sites to note the places of death, then more marches and counter marches and demonstrations just so everyone can tap into the tragedy of the moment for their own purposes.
Oh, yes, and this happened on the same day that Joe Biden went to Kenosha to visit with the family of a black guy shot seven times in the back by a policeman, you know, in that outburst that drew a teenager with an assault rifle to the scene to help restore order. He killed two people. Biden’s purposes were completely peaceful, a condemnation of violence and a call to reason.
I don’t think you will hear much of that in the wake of this latest tragedy.
What in the name of holy God is happening to us? We’re having a presidential campaign that seems as though it is playing out in some forgotten corner of the Balkans, complete with a tin pot dictator wanna be in Donald Trump, a man with delusions about dark forces behind his opponent. The Attorney General is playing sheriff of Nottingham in this little drama.
You can bet Trump is going to try to squeeze all the law and order mojo he can out of this latest slaying. What else has he got?
One hardly gets to write much about the actual campaign because the president is a looney and fast-moving target who never lets an abomination get stale before he gins up something even crazier. Yesterday it was telling folks in North Carolina they should just vote twice, by mail and in person, to check out the system. It’s a felony to do that, first, and I believe it’s probably a felony even to recommend that, second. But the scoundrel would not be stopped by any of that. He needs the attention, you know. And he has to set the stage for his claim that the election was fraudulent, because he is in for a huge butt kicking I suspect and really needs to find a way to claim it should be his biggest victory of all because he is so special and things are moving along so smoothly.
I thought that this recommendation of felony election fraud would be the worst thing to happen on Thursday, but of course, I was wrong.
With all this happening, the death toll from the Trump Virus (call it what it is, you know?) is approaching 200,000, the economy is slipping deep into the pooper and there’s no plan to get it out.
Oh, and the Russians are apparently at it again, too.
I’m not scared because we are, after all, America, a nation built on a strong and durable dream. We can pull out of this. But Christ in a cracker, at this moment we’re really screwed up.