October 16th, 2007  |  Published in etc

Frank Waterhouse of Oregon is suing Portland police after he was tasered and shot with a beanbag gun. His offense? Videotaping a warrantless police search on a friend’s property. The police report helpfully explains that the force used on Waterhouse (who was standing far off on the edge of the property) was necessary because, "He had refused to drop the camera which could be used as a weapon."

First time I’ve heard that one.

via Radley Balko, whose link has more interesting stuff.

F. Scott Fitzgerald said “the true test of a first-rate mind is the ability to hold two contradictory ideas at the same time.”

If we take that proposition and apply it to cities, Portland’s police help make Portland pretty first rate — like the rain.

“Hey, Mike … how’s the weather?”

“Rainy. And cold. There’s a slick slime of decomposing leaves coating the sidewalk in front of the bad neighbor’s house. It’s dark all the time.”

“Oh … yuck. Does it just make everybody act horribly?”

“Nah. Friendliest city I’ve ever lived in.”


“Nah … it’s just emblematic of our first-rateness!

See? So:

“Hey, Mike … that’s something about those cops tasering and bean-bagging that photographer.”

“Yeah … I guess. That’s how Portland cops roll … when they aren’t pepper-spraying babies whose parents took them out on a Critical Mass ride, or shooting people in the head while hanging through the window of a speeding car.”

“Goddamn! Portland sounds like some sort of fascist hell-hole!”

“Nah. Pretty liberal/free-market hippie.”


“Nah … it’s just emblematic of our first-rateness!

Leave a Response

© Michael Hall, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States license.