Of, by, and for the People!  Follow @ThePDXAlliance
About Us | Subscribe | Contact & Submission info | Volunteer


Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Occupy the  Mailing List!

Special Report on
Colonel Summers Park

Active Community,
, Cartoons by Shannon Wheeler, Clyde List, & Steve Amy   

Commentary, Critiques,
Letters, and more

Truth to Power & Distressing Portland's Elites
Since 1981!

Lindsay Walker

FrontPage / Activism /
BlogPortal / Calendar /
Ongoing Calendar Events
Donate / Flyer/
Pictures on Picasso:
PDX Music /
/ Subscribe /
Place Ad / Ad Rates
Online Ads
Advertising /
Twitter / News! /
Previous Issues /
/ Myspace /
Facebook1 / Facebook2
Waterfront Blues Fest
Alliance on YouTube:


Joe Anybody!
Active Community /
A Few Words
Arts & Culture /
Book Reviews! /
Breaking News /
Cartoons / Steve Amy /
Too Much Coffee Man /
Community Calendar /
Cover The Real News! /
Fifth Monday LaboRadio!
Jobs / Labor History /
Letters / Music /
NewsBytes /
Mike Hastie Poetics

Progressive Directory /
Secret Society /
  Viewpoints & Commentary

  William Beeman /
Ellen Brown
Shamus Cooke /
Tom Engelhardt /
Kucinich /
Michael Munk /
/ William Reed /
Mark Schwebke /
Norman Solomon /
Lawrence S. Wittner

Partners: ACLU
Alliance for Democracy
AMA / Backspace
B-MediaCollective  Bread&Roses
CLG / Code Pink
Common Dreams /
Democracy Now /
First Unitarian Church
Jobs w\ Justice
KBOO /Labor Radio /
/ MRG / Milagro /
Mobile T's Cover the News
/ Move-On /
OccupyOEA /
Occupy PDX
Oregon Peace & Justice /
Peace House
Peace worker
Right 2 Dream Too /
Sisters of The Road
Street Roots
/ Skanner /
SocialistWorker.org /
The Nation / TruthOut /
The 99%
Urban League /
VFP / Voz
We Are Oregon
Witness for Peace /

Topics: A-F
Arts & Culture /
AIPAC / Beatles /
Books /
Bradley Manning /
Civil Rights / Coal /
Death Penalty /
Department of Home Security /
Drones /
Economic Justice /
Education /
Election 2012
Fascism /
Fair Trade / F-29 /
Environment /
Film / Fluoridation
Foreclosure /
Topics:  G-R
Health Care
/ Homeless / Iraq
J-Street / Jill Stein /
Justice PartyMiddle East /
Music /
National Security Administration
Occupy Blog / Peace /
/ Police /
Post Office / Quotes
Topics: S-Z
STRIKE! / Theatre /
The Pongo Fund /
/ TPP /
  Tri-Met / Union /
UnionresourceVDay /
Visual Arts
Voices in Action
War & Peace /
/ Writing /




Michael Munk PDX Historian

Colonel Summers Park

by Lindsey Walker

There was an article in the local paper on May 24, 2013, entitled “At Colonel Summers Park," neighbors and the city are working to stem drug use and underage drinking.” Because I prefer to avoid subjecting myself to the corporate media I was not aware of this article. The article cites a meeting that occurred with the local community association where neighbors and city officials, likely Parks and Recreation and possibly the police, indicated that “the park has also become a popular haven for drug users, underage drinkers and vandals nearly every night of the week,” and the chairperson was quoted as saying “It’s a great park, but somehow it’s taken on a darker edge.”

I highlight “darker edge” as bold because it is something very similar to what “Elizabeth” told me at the park when I spoke with her. Originally I did not know Elizabeth’s full name, but she is cited in the article as “Elizabeth Kennedy-Wong, the Parks Bureau’s community engagement manager.” I think a better title for her would be community enragement manager, because that is how I and many of the people in the park feel about how Parks and Recreation is “handling” the complaints from the neighbors.

In my original email to Amanda Fritz below I also use the words “dark and sinister” to describe the police presence. The reason for this is when Elizabeth and I talked she described the park as “two years ago” taking on a “dark and sinister edge,” just like the chairperson above, and because two cops in all black wearing partial body armor were standing just feet away from us after writing someone a ticket for alcohol I pointed at them and said “that is dark and sinister right there.” So my question is who came up with the wording “dark and sinister”? Did this come from Parks and Recreation or the community association? I like the name though to describe what is being done to the people in the park and what Parks and Recreation is trying to slip past us and the neighborhood, and will call it Operation Dark and Sinister.

There was a lot I left out from my conversation with Elizabeth that day. First she claimed that she was the one that called for the meeting to be held in the park so that the people who used the park could “participate.” Of course I only knew about this meeting after it was over, and saw the head of Parks and Recreation “security,” Art Hendrix, talking with people I don’t normally see in the park. Also someone who hangs out at Food Not Bombs saw what was going on, said they talked to Elizabeth, and told me that I should check it out. I only know of one other person who overheard the meeting. You cannot take credit for allowing people to “participate” in a meeting, if you hold it without notifying them. Also myself and the person who also spoke with Elizabeth both gave her our email addresses, because Elizabeth said she wanted for other people to have an opportunity to, again, “participate” in the next meeting, which coincidentally was scheduled without our notice at the exact same time we have our serving, and of course neither of us were “notified”, and we only found out about it second hand. It is important to note that our chapter of Food Not Bombs has a public list server email address, comes up in internet searches, and people contact us all the time from charity organizations wanting to share donations, or from schools and universities wanting us to come and give talks. We are practically accepted as honorary academics in this town, do all kinds of good work for the community, but Parks and Recreation has no respect for us, views us as second class “citizens” and has generally treated us as no different than what they would normally perceive as “riff-raff”.

Also Elizabeth described herself as a bureaucrat, who wanted to do “good”, as if she knew it was wrong what Parks and Recreation was doing, but that she had to consider all the complaints from the neighbors, and do the “best she could.” A bureaucrat is supposed to be an administrator in an organization, typically governmental, whose aim is to provide some kind of agreed upon service to the community, city, state or society, but Elizabeth’s title is “community engagement manager”, which really means she’s Mike Abbate’s little PR bitch. As I will continue to illuminate and explain, Elizabeth fooled me, and I am now obligated to make sure she does not fool you.

The article describes Elizabeth as [wondering] if the brick picnic shelter on the south side of the park could be modified to make it less attractive for drinkers and drug users. This is interesting because Elizabeth gave me the impression that she was not for that, and was trying to get more “community” input to possibly prevent it from happening. The truth is that Elizabeth has no interest in what anyone who uses the park has to say about Operation Dark and Sinister, and in fact Parks and Recreation’s plan to permanently exclude people from using public spaces, by installing iron gates, is an existing policy. At the time I wrote my first email to Amanda Fritz I did not know this, but then I found out later that the pavilion in Powell Park has been modified the same way:

Gated Pavilion at Powell Park, closed to the public, without a paid permit

I cannot go on without also showing a comparison to the existing pavilion that still remains open to the pubic in Colonel Summers:

The pavilion in Colonel Summers Park, still open to the public without a permit!

Note that the pavilion in Colonel Summers is actually about 25-33% larger than the one in Powell, so the resulting unusable gated monstrosity would be relatively that much more repugnant for people to have to look at it. How in the world anyone would want to look at something like that is absolutely baffling. The only way someone could propose such an alteration to such a beautiful historic architectural landmark is to be absolutely insane. The gated pavilion in Powell park, and a potential one in Colonel Summers Park, would serve no purpose other than to memorialize a policy of heavy handed over policing and militarization.

When I took these pictures it was on a Saturday, when the park seems to be less frequently used. All the regular houseless folks were there. I talked to them, as I have been all week, about the changes proposed to the park and invited them to come to the meeting. What is funny is as I was taking the pictures, I had leaned my bike up against the table where they were sitting, and my purse was just laying in the rack on the back of my bike. I walked all over the park taking pictures without any concern that my purse would be stolen. As I took the last picture I realized where I had left my purse and thought for a moment, “should I go back and get it?”, and instead decided, “nah it’s safe.” It made me wonder though how the neighbors who have been making calls to the police and Parks and Recreation must feel. I know these people- they don’t. I volunteer for Food Not Bombs and am accustomed to being around the houseless- they are not.

All the houseless folks I talked to knew about the pavilion in Powell Park and how it had been gated up. I asked one of them how long ago did it happen, and they said three years. So the pavilion at Powell Park was gated up three years ago, and Colonel Summers Park took on a “dark and sinister edge” two years ago. Do the math. Something tells me that the people hanging out at the pavilion in Powell park moved to Colonel Summers, or maybe the number in Colonel Summers just doubled. Who knows, I am purely conjecturing, but certainly a policy of excluding houseless people, or everyone for that matter, from using public spaces, just because some of the people are considered “undesirable” does not solve the problem, it only moves it. The difference with Powell Park and Colonel Summers park is the neighbors. Colonel Summers Park is almost entirely surrounded by houses, where as Powell Park is adjacent to no houses, but rather a factory/distribution center, a union hall, a parking lot, and across the street from fast food joints. Some of the houseless folks said the students from the high school catercorner across the street ruined it. It would be interesting to know why the pavilion was gated up, but I do not believe you would get an honest answer from Parks and Recreation. The truth is again, it was a culmination of a policy of policing and militarization, and now we are about to see the fruition of that policy in Colonel Summers as well.

The mayor claims that the city has been mismanaged for years and as a result has shaken up the assignment of bureaus to stimulate a change in their respective departments. Coincidentally the Colonel Summers Park serving of Food Not Bombs is not the only serving that is threatened with being shut down. We also serve every Tuesday, the houseless, occupying outside City Hall, and we cook out of the kitchen at Right to Dream Too (R2D2). R2D2 is a self organized encampment of houseless people, started by Right to Survive, working to solve their own problems without city assistance. They are being fined by the city, and this week will be going to court in a law suit against the city to have the fines removed. If R2D2 does not win, they could lose their space, and the Downtown Food Not Bombs chapter would lose its kitchen. It is very opportunistic that both Parks and Recreation and Development Services, the bureau fining R2D2, are both under Amanda Fritz now. Parks and Recreation used to be under “Fuck Nick Fish”, and Development Services under “Saltzman Sucks”. Back when these bureaus were under them, there was no reason to petition them for relief from oppression, since they only serve the interests of business. Amanda is supposed to be a “progressive” who represents everyone, but she has made no statements in regards to changing their regressive policies. Again the mayor claims the city has been mismanaged for years. When are we going to start seeing some people getting fired?

The park policing and military tactics in Colonel Summers Park started last spring in the month of May 2012. I know this because I wrote a song about it, and the lyrics to the song is where the references “Fuck Nick Fish” and “Saltzman Sucks” come from. There is a line in the song, “your words are a lie, you’d just assume we’d die.” I came up with the idea for these lyrics from the head park ranger during the Occupy Jameson Square action called by Cameron Whitten. I don’t remember this guys name, but he was a tall, older, barrel chested man. I approached him because I’d never seen someone wearing a green uniform like that in Portland before, and engaged him in a political discussion. When I told him I was protesting because I was concerned about the crises of climate change and capitalism, he responded by saying what we needed was a “die off.” In other words, we as people of economic and citizenship privilege, in the most powerful country in the world, are under no obligation to change our lives at all, and the rest of the world will just have to experience a “thinning out” of their populations. This is someone who does not care if we live or die. This is the kind of person Mike Abbate and Art Hendrix are staffing under Parks and Recreation “security”. These people need to be fired, along with Elizabeth as well.

The last thing that Elizabeth told me, that I held back from sharing in my original post because I did not want to get her in trouble, was the fact that she “claimed” to support Occupy. She even “claimed” to be the lone voice in Parks and Recreation expressing sympathy for the movement, which of course is no surprise, even if you do believe her claim of being the “lone voice”, which I do not. When I suggested that the money proposed being spent on changes to Colonel Summers be redirected to meet the needs of those suffering most, she exclaimed that she was tired of hearing how there “wasn’t enough money”, and that we needed to get that money back from the 1%. She also indicated that the project would not be a “new” construction contract, but would be done within the department with existing employees and resources, as if that absolves Parks and Recreation of any responsibility for spending the money, if you can still believe anything she has to say anyway at this point, which again I do not. Lets go back to the head park ranger above who does not care if we live or die. I talked to him because he was wearing a green uniform I had not recognized in my previous years in Portland, two of which was spent doing Food Not Bombs in Colonel Summers Park prior to the arrival of the park rangers when the park took a “dark and sinister” turn. Then suddenly dozens of park rangers start showing up with big new shiny trucks and cars. Maybe all these people were already working for Parks and Recreation. Maybe all these trucks were already in the bureau fleet. If I do some quick calculating though of the cost of a half a dozen new vehicles and a dozen part time employees, plus fuel and insurance and all the other costs that come along with maintaining a staff, I could easily estimate two to three hundred thousand dollars have already been spent on Operation Dark and Sinister (and probably more!) That’s your community pool right there! That’s a down payment on developing some of the 132 acres of land east of 82nd into parks. The city claims they need a huge influx of tax payer dollars to develop parks for people east of 82nd. Elizabeth claims we need to Occupy so we can take our money back from the 1%. She just wants more money for her, Mike Abbate and Art Hendrix to blow without repute. (Every time I recall Elizabeth telling a lie I get the mental image of her doing a little pirouette.)

Last but not least is the greatest cost of Operation Dark and Sinister, and that is the human cost. I have no idea how many lives have been ruined by the militaristic policies of Parks and Recreation. Actually I am quite ashamed of myself for not stepping outside of my own privilege role sooner to say something, but rather waiting until it got to the point of threatening my local Food Not Bombs chapter, to take action. Countless young people have had their lives destroyed with criminal records, which certainly landed many of them in jail, having to pay fines they probably can’t afford, ruining their record and opportunity for employment. I have watched houseless people be stood over and intimidated for no other reason than they appear to be houseless. I personally know that a houseless person sat on the board for over a year for the community association involved with this issue, so I know this does not reflect their values. Before you say, “well they were using drugs and alcohol”, let me ask you this. How many people do you know drink and use a little bit of “drugs” most likely cannabis? You probably know more people who do than do not. The difference is most of these people have private residences, or can afford to pay four or five times more for a drink in a bar. Also ask yourself how many of your friends take a cooler of beer to the beach or the park, even when they know it’s prohibited? Ok, now ask yourself why is it different for these young people? Haven’t we all gone through times in our lives when we were going through self discovery and experimentation. Of course there is going to be drug use and underage drinking crime statistics generated in a park where “security” is focusing all its resources on policing people. Ask yourself one more question though. Did the local paper just wake up one day and say, “hey we should do a story on the crime in Colonel Summers Park!” No, city “officials” contacted them to lay the ground work for the final construction phase, of Operation Dark and Sinister.

Mike Abbate claims to be a “Christian”. I grew up studying the gospel of Jesus Christ. I wrote several notebooks worth of my own notes about His teachings, one I still have from when I was in college almost twenty years ago. Mike Abbate is not a Christian, he is an anti-christian. Someone who follows the teachings of Jesus Christ does not lock up behind gates or remove the roofs from pubic places where people without shelter seek refuge from the elements. I do not know if he will get fired, but he sure will burn in hell. I have a friend though, who is houseless, who does hang out in the park, and he told me he believed in Jesus Christ, and he is a real Christian, and helps take care of the other houseless people who frequent the park. We can learn a lot more from our houseless friends in the park than we can from Mike Abbate, and we can trust them too.

In the article in the local paper I referenced earlier, there was a link to the website of the community association now involved with the changes being proposed to Colonel Summers Park. I sent them an email, letting them know, that volunteers from Food Not Bombs wanted to work with them to help resolve the issues between the neighbors, and the people they are complaining about in the park. I also requested the meeting minutes so I could more thoroughly review the complaints and prepare for the meeting. I was notified that all we needed to do was just tell them how many people we served. I am not speaking for the rest of the members of my chapter, but I am not inclined to walk into a meeting and meekly report how many people we serve, and then just leave it up to the authorities of Parks and Recreation, that have been oppressing us for a year and a half with military and police tactics, and now disrespecting and deceiving us, by claiming to hold a meeting in the park so we can participate, but not telling us anything about it, and then after we provide email addresses for them to notify us of the next meeting, not notifying us and scheduling it during our serving. I have no interest in working with Parks and Recreation, however I would be willing to work with the community association, to bridge the gap between the neighbors, Food Not Bombs, and the people they are complaining about in the park. That is why I think it is very important for Food Not Bombs and the community association to get off to a good start, unlike with Parks and Recreation. We have the opportunity to open a dialogue that can transform and heal our community, which is made up of not just the housed, but the unhoused as well.

I would also like to note that in the meeting minutes for the community association concerned, Colonel Summers Park is mentioned only once in the last two years, prior to the recent meeting that focused on the “crime” there, and that was in reference to the bathrooms not working. Also the briefings in the minutes on crime, are all generally concerned with car theft, and have nothing to do with Colonel Summers. The only assumption that I can make is that the neighbors who are complaining, are doing so directly to the police and Parks and Recreation, and not going through the community association, and that Parks and Recreation is who initiated the meeting with the community association, not the other way around. This indicates to me that Parks and Recreation is trying to use the community association to validate their misguided policies. This is why I want to see the meeting minutes. This will answer a lot of questions.

Back to the picture above, of the still open pavilion in Colonel Summers Park. Notice the people inside the pavilion walking around. There is a Labyrinth there, that people who visit Colonel Summers, either from the neighborhood or from out of town commonly walk on. The Labyrinth is a spiritual symbol. I live with a household of Quakers and the Labyrinth is a symbol we cherish. In fact we have a large picture of it framed in our living room:

The Labyrinth: Walking a Sacred Path

And the inscription underneath is as follows:

“The Labyrinth is an archetype, a divine imprint found in religious traditions in various forms around the world. By walking the labyrinth, we are discovering a long-forgotten mystical tradition. The mysterious winding path that takes us to the center becomes a metaphor for our own spiritual journey. Going in, we release the cares and concerns which distract us from our Source. The center is a place of prayer and meditation where we receive clarity about our lives. As we walk back out on the same path that brought us in, we are granted the power to act. The walk is a shared journey–an activity which communities can do together to coalesce and unify vision.”

“The labyrinth is a mandala that meets our longing–for a change of heart; for a change of ways in how we live together on this fragile island home; and for the energy, vision and the courage to become agents of transformation in an age when no less will suffice to meet the challenges of survival.”

“The vision of Veriditas–the world-wide Labyrinth Project–is to establish labyrinths in cathedrals, retreat centers, hospitals, prisons, parks, airports, and community spaces around the world by the year 2000, so they are available to walk in times of joy, in times of sorrow, and when we are seeking hope.”

On the web page for Colonel Summers Park there is no mention of this symbol and who or why it is painted on the concrete floor of the pavilion. We need to learn more about this powerful symbol of enlightenment that protects the park, from the most dark and sinister plots to destroy it.

Original email to Amanda Fritz with commentary in italics and modifications in [brackets]:

Today I had a conversation with Elizabeth, one of your employees for Parks and Recreation in regards to Colonel Summers Park. She had just held a meeting under the pavilion prior to me coming to the park for Food Not Bombs. I spoke to her after this meeting in regards to changes that are being proposed to the park in response to some complaints by neighbors. The following is my recommendation to her and responses to the proposed changes that were on the form that she provided for people to fill out, plus my commentary as a frequent user of the park the last four years.

1. Remove the roof from the [pavilion] or enclose it with a fence so that it can only be used by people who buy a permit.

I am against this. The [pavilion] is used by Food Not Bombs to serve food under during the rainy season. It is also used by people who are exercising free speech and personal expression. It is also used by people seeking shelter from the elements who have no place to go. I understand the prejudice people of economic privilege have against the houseless and young people of alternative culture engaging in personal expression, however that is the entire point of the “rights” stated in the constitution, to prevent the majority from oppressing underprivileged minorities.

2. Remove the bushes from the back of the park because people are hiding in them.

I am against this. Sometimes people need personal space when bathrooms are closed or not desired. If people are hanging out in these places longer than the neighbors feel comfortable then the solution is to reduce or eliminate the policing which forces people to hide in bushes.

3. Remove the steps leaving the park so people will not drink in the street.

Again I am against this, for the same reason as above. If people are leaving the park it is because they are being policed in the park. The policing needs to stop or be reduced so people don’t have to flee the park.

4. Remove the wading pool.

I am against this. The wading pool is used by skateboarders. Skateboarding is a healthy physical activity popular among young people. The only purpose of removing the wading pool would be to punish young people and attempt to satisfy the prejudice of people of economic privilege against youth and alternative culture.

5. Add a special micro soccer paint scheme to the blacktop behind the tennis courts.

I am against this. Lets spend that money on services that help people. I understand the Timbers want to donate that money. Tell the Timbers to donate that money to help people, and that helping meet the unmet needs of people is a higher priority, and once we’ve done that we can spend more money on recreation facilities. In addition if Parks and Recreation have too much money in their budget, the solution isn’t to just spend that money on low priority projects. That is corruption. I would propose alternatively moving the money to other departments whose purpose is to meet the needs of people. (It is obvious what the purpose of the “futsal” is now- to make people think they are getting something, after all the beautiful amenities of the park have been ripped out, laid bare to waste, and turned into a ghetto.)

Lastly I recommended to Elizabeth to stop or reduce the policing. A common sense compromise would be to remove the police and reduce the number of park rangers, and have them only respond to visible disturbances, and then just have them make sure everyone leaves the park at closing time. Currently they are going from group to group trying to catch people with drugs and alcohol or preventing people from engaging in personal expression, such as playing music. They will stand and observe a group of people and question them in regards to what is in their drinking containers. I also regularly witness them every time I go to the park gang up on small or single numbers of individuals and intimidate them. I’ve seen them question people that are doing absolutely nothing illegal about what is in their bags (reminiscent of NYPD “stop and frisk” tactics.) The message they are sending to the people who use the park is clear- “we don’t want you here, and we are going to harass you until you leave”. If there has been a recent increase in the number and severity of disturbances it is clearly a reaction to the over policing, and that policing needs to stop. I praise the young people who are defying this oppressive authority. Maybe the rest of the people in this country who are apathetic and just accept the growing web of surveillance by the state, corporations and spy agencies can learn something from them.

Amanda, this is the second time I’ve emailed you, the last time being in regards to the closure of the Occupy camp two years ago. I want you to know that even though you disagreed with me in your response I still supported you in the last election and encouraged the people in my community to support you as well, because I believe you represent the people as one of them, while your opponent was clearly a career politician who would only represent the interests of the system.

I have been volunteering for Food Not Bombs for four years serving in Colonel Summers park and now for the vigil to end the camping ban in front of City Hall. Most recently I participated in the “Pitch a Tent” action held by Right to Survive (R2S) and Right to Dream Too (R2D2). I am intimately aware of what goes on in Colonel Summers park and in the houseless community.

I have been serving in Colonel Summers park for four years. Feedback from the neighbors is very positive, specifically in regards to the fact that we do all our servings by bike and trailer, we ask people to bring their own containers so we never leave any garbage, and the area of the park we use is always clean after we leave (actually I have no idea if this is true. This is what Elizabeth, who cannot be trusted, told me. I believe now she was telling me this just to assure me everything would be okay, and they had our interest at heart, and I didn’t need to take any action. Since then I have received conflicting reports from different people that the neighbors do have a problem with Food Not Bombs and the “people” they perceive “we attract”). We provide a healthy alternative to not just drugs and alcohol, but to the unhealthy lifestyle that is common amongst everyone of all levels of economic privilege. We serve organic vegan food, mostly from local sources, we serve whole grain wheat and gluten-free bread, we provide healthy physical activities for our volunteers and the people we serve by advocating walking and cycling, we provide community as an alternative to the alienation of capitalism, and we educate people on healthy living. While everyone else is debating health care we teach people to care about their health. We do all of this largely without money, though occasionally we get donations from people to buy staples like whole grain rice and lentils, and we always support our local cooperatives when we buy these things.

My first two years of serving in Colonel Summers park is probably the happiest two years of my life, first because of the community that I found at Food Not Bombs, but also because of the joy I found from learning how to take personal responsibility for my effect on the environment by living simply and sustainable. During those first two years I would go to the park several times a week, and occasionally I would observe disturbances, but they were very rare. People may have been drinking in the park, but it wasn’t visible, and rarely did a problem occur from it. On the whole what I observed and experienced was people being free, happy and healthy enjoying the outdoors. Then came the park rangers.

Ever since the park rangers showed up the problems have gotten worse and worse, and the more and more I’ve observed the police having to be called out, and now the police are there all the time. What Parks and Recreation is doing by policing the park is creating a problem that didn’t exist before. I talked to Elizabeth about this. The police have added a dark and sinister  presence to the park (Elizabeth’s own words about the people using the park, that I rightfully redirected towards the police). They now ride around the park policing people on all terrain vehicles (ATV’s) or “four-wheelers”, emitting nasty carbon monoxide. People from Food Not Bombs have specifically complained about this because we do everything by bike and trailer to maintain a clean environment and not emit CO2 and here they are blowing exhaust fumes in our faces. I grew up on a farm where we used four-wheelers to herd cattle and I find it very alarming that the police are using them to herd people. I am very proud of the people who use Colonel Summers park for not submitting to this control and continuing to have fun in the park despite constant and escalating harassment by the police.

Another thing I told Elizabeth is that it is legal to drink in the park, to which she disagreed, until I corrected her by clarifying “if you buy a permit”. My message was simple. The police aren’t coming to the park to keep people from drinking. The police are coming to the park to protect capitalism. If the [pavilion] is closed off to only people who can buy a permit then it will not be to protect the neighborhood from the houseless, but to advance capitalism. The reason why there are people in the park with unmet needs is because of capitalism. This is why I am working to end capitalism, because under capitalism there will always be people with unmet needs.

I invite you to come to one of our servings, either on Monday or Friday at 6:00 PM in Colonel Summers, or more conveniently on Tuesday at 6:30 PM out in front of City Hall where you work. [We do everything by bike and trailer so please do not drive.] I would also request you waive the fine being levied against R2D2 since they are working to solve the problem of houselessness and have a better success rate than the city even though the city spends an exponentially larger amount of money per houseless person.
2 Responses to Colonel Summers Park

lindseywalker says:
 July 3, 2013 at 6:15 pm

My understanding is that it is a small number of neighborhood “activists”, people who “organize” phone calls to the parks department and police to complain about things they don’t like. All of my reporting is based on a conglomeration of field reports of myself and what others have witnessed in the park, some of whom have talked to both neighbors and park rangers.

Just a few weeks ago there was a truck parked in front of her house next to the park with a bunch of kids playing loud dance music. Two cops on four wheelers went up to them and the kids immediately turned their music off. I couldn’t hear what the cops said cause I was too far away, but then the cops just went away and the kids turned their music back on and celebrated as if they’d won a victory. I could see a neighbor outside of his house looking at them as if he was bothered by the loud music, but the cops never spoke to him. I’d never seen those specific kids before and haven’t seen them since, but that was right when the (most recent) escalation in policing began, with actual uniformed police officers patrolling the park, not just park rangers. However I’ve seen the cops very eagerly writing tickets for alcohol or violating exclusions.

This past week I watched the cops hanging out just feet away from someone with a loud sound system rapping. I was glad to hear the live rap, but clearly the cops’ strategy is to allow activity that would generate calls from neighbors, and only focus on policing activity that will generate more crime statistics. All park security and the police are interested in is generating more job security for themselves (their standard practice) and ultimately shutting down Monday Funday.

See Parks and Recreation for more. The only time we will get to meet these people and have any input will be July 15th (Monday), 6:00-8:30 p.m. at Hinson Church, Room 104, 1137 SE 20th Avenue. Please spread the word.


Gasper Johnson says:

July 3, 2013 at 5:18 pm

Nice! Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Do you know if the complaints are coming from individuals or the neighborhood association? I know someone living next to the park and check in with her every few months specifically about this issue. She has kept to the, “well sometimes it is loud for maybe 10 min, but then usually everyone is gone.” Other than that there’s “it is hard to know people are over there even.” She lives on Taylor right across from the veranda.


"People have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want
and the courage to take.” 
Emma Goldman

The right to rebellion is the right to seek a higher rule... GEORGE ELIOT

Speaking Truth to Power Since 1981! Support
Alternative Media!

And Checkout The Alliance Community Action Calendar


AlternativeNewsResource.org/  Behind the Headlines...  Oregon News Links     

   TPA Community Meetings: theportlandalliance.org/communitymeetings  

Shannon Wheeler's Too Much Coffee Man Portal at The Portland AllianceToo Much Coffee Man


Arts & Culture
Visual Arts, Music,
Cartoons, Movies,
Books, Writing

Community Calendar

 Local actions, events, rallies, etc.

Eyes Wide Shut!                

by Yugen Fardan Rashad


I Have a Dream. Obama:
I Have a Drone

By Norman Solomon

April Munk's

Picture of Michael Munk Tribune Photo  L. E. Baskow

Peter C. Little: Alliance Photographer







Stay Connected: Join the Alliance Mailing List!

NW Alliance for Alt. Media & Education

(NAAME) dba The Portland Alliance:

Questions, comments, or suggestions: editor@theportlandalliance.org

We Speak Truth to Power for the 99%


Follow @ThePDXAlliance

Contact us:
Click Here!

Navigation: FrontPage / Activism / Interactive Calendar / Donate / Flyer / YouTube / Poster / Subscribe / Place Ad /
Ad Rates / Online Ads / Advertising / Twitter / News! / Previous Issues / Blog/ Myspace / Facebook1 / Facebook2
Features:   Active Community / A Few Words /Arts & Culture / Breaking News / Jobs /  / Labor History / MusicNewsBytes / Progressive Directory / Cartoons / Community CalendarLetters / Poetry / Viewpoints & Commentary
ColumnsWilliam Beeman, Ellen Brown, Engelhardt / Dennis Kucinich / Michael Munk / Myers /
William Reed / Mark Schwebke / Norman Solomon / Vorpahl / Wittner
Partners: AFD / AMA /
B-MediaCollective / Bread&Roses / CAUSA/ CLG/ Common Dreams / CWA / DIA / FSP /ISO / Jobs w\ Justice / KBOO / Labor Radio / LGBTQMRG / Milagro / Mosaic / Move-On / NWLaborPress / Occupy /
OEA / Occupy PDX / Peace House / The 99% / Peace worker / PCASC / PPRC / Right 2 Dream Too /
Street Roots
/ Skanner / The Nation / TruthOut / Urban League / VFP / Voz /
Topics: A-F AIPAC / Civil Rights / Coal / Death Penalty / Education / Election 2012 / Fair Trade / F-29 / Environment / Foreclosure /
 Topics:  G-R Health / Homeless / J-Street / Middle East / Occupy Blog / Peace / Persian / Police / Post Office/ Quotes
: S-Z STRIKE! /  Tri-MetUnion / VDay / War & Peace / Women / Waterfront Blues Festival /
/ WritingResource
Coming Soon: Service Directory / Editing / Flyers / Ground View / Flying Focus / Literacy / Rashad

The Portland Alliance: P.O. Box 14162 / Portland, OR  97293-0162 
Phone: (Cell) (503)-697-1670
Questions, comments, suggestions: editor@theportlandalliance.org or ThePortlandAlliance@gmail.com
© 1981-2013 NAAME NW Alliance for Alternative Media & Education,
dba The Portland Alliance:  
All Rights Reserved.  A 501C3 Oregon Non-profit Corporation for Public BenefitSupport local media:
B-MediaCollective Cover The Real News! /Joe Anybody
The Asian Reporter
| Kboo | Oregon Peaceworker | Portland.Indymedia.org |
The Skanner