American Iranian Friendship Council

Wednesday, May 31, 2017


Portland Stands United Against Hate Rally.
City Hall, 4th Ave. 
Downtown Portland, Oregon 
12:30 PM
Sunday June 4th, 2017
A coalition of prominent community organizations, labor groups, faith groups, and activists are announcing plans for a mass rally at 12:30pm on Sunday, June 4th in front of City Hall. In response to recent hate crimes and an emboldening of far-right forces, we the undersigned are calling for a city-wide mobilization to refuse bigotry and hatred in Portland.
Statement of Unity:
On Friday, May 26, right-wing extremist Jeremy Christian attacked and killed two men and wounded another for daring to challenge his racist, Islamophobic attack on two young women. This was not an isolated event. Rather, it represents an emboldening of the Far Right across this country, whose growth has been facilitated by an openly racist, misogynist, bigoted administration in the White House.
In honor of these heroic victims, in solidarity with immigrant and Muslim communities, and in recognition of the long history of racism faced by people of color in this city, the undersigned groups are calling on Portland residents to assemble for a peaceful, mass rally in front of City Hall on Sunday, June 4th from 12:30 pm – 4pm.
The killer is a known white nationalist who has attended recent events hosted by local Far Right organizations. These same groups have organized a “free speech rally” on June 4th at Terry Schrunk Plaza. Their plan is to instill fear and spread messages of hatred to Portland’s oppressed and marginalized communities, and it will not be tolerated.
Members of this Coalition are committed the principle of solidarity: A threat to one of our communities is a threat to ALL of our communities. We believe now is the time to show these bigots, this country, and the world that Portland stands united against this hate. We must reclaim our city and repudiate the violence and hatred of the far-right and the larger political views it represents.
Logistics and Security:
We seek to mobilize the greatest number of people in front of City Hall; which is separate from, but adjacent to, the so-called ‘Free Speech’ rally at Terry Schrunk Plaza starting at 2pm. Ours will be a peaceful event to demonstrate with our numbers and our voices, that the vast majority of Portland stands united against their message of racism and bigotry.
We soberly recognize that extremist forces represent a real threat; particularly to the oppressed and vulnerable communities represented by many coalition members. However, history has taught us that an emboldened and growing far-right presents a danger to all of us that we cannot risk ignoring.
We are taking all possible steps to ensure this rally is safe for those who attend. The event has been permitted. The Mayor’s office has confirmed that the police will not wade into our rally, but will form a buffer between our group and that of the far-right to prevent physical confrontation. The Coalition has also formed its own Peacekeeping taskforce. Our collective strength lies in numbers. We hope you will join us.
“Jews know that when right wing hate targets one community, all communities are threatened. Jewish Voice for Peace lifts up the heroic actions of the three young men who stood up to protect two young women from racist incitement on the MAX and expresses its unequivocal solidarity with the Muslim community and all other communities that have been subjected to escalated attacks since the November 2016 election.”
-Joel Beinin, Jewish Voice for Peace, Donald J. McLachlan Professor of Middle East History, Stanford University
“We are witnessing the growth of an emboldened and violent far-right across this country. The entire political establishment, above all the Trump administration, bear responsibility. ICE Raids, Muslim Bans, hyped up nationalist rhetoric, and years of increasing social and economic inequality. These are the recipes for what we are witnessing today. But we are also seeing solidarity and courage in the face of this racism, the heroes in Portland who stood up to a bigoted vigilante, the thousands who are rallying around the country to stand against hate. This is where our hope lies.”
-Wael Elasady, International Socialist Organization, Co-founder of Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights
We’ve been facing this culture of hate and bigotry for too long, and is getting worst since the last presidential election which allowed hate groups to use it as free speech and act violently on it, we cannot accept it! It cannot become the norm. We most organize, mobilize and unite to build a culture of inclusiveness and justice.
- Marco Mejia, Portland Immigrant Rights Coalition (PIRC)
"CAIR's mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding. We are proud to endorse and stand with a coalition of organizations and groups in an expression of peace, and refuse the emboldening of bigotry and hatred in our city of Portland."
-Seemab Hussaini, Ad-Hoc Committee of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Oregon)

Current Endorsements:
Community Groups:
- Portland International Socialist Organization (ISO)
- Voz Workers' Rights Education Project
- Portland Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP)
- Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights
- American Iranian Friendship Council
-Veterans for Peace (VFP) Chapter 72
- Council on American-Islamic Relations (Cair- Oregon)
- Portland Immigrant Rights Coalition
- Solidarity a Socialist-Feminist organization
- PCUN (Oregon's Farmworkers Union)
- Americans United for Palestinian Human Rights
- Portland's UnShul
- Latino Network
- Causa
- Portland Democratic Socialists of America
- Urban League of Portland
- Portland Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East
- Portland Peaceful Response Coalition
- Portland East Timor Action Network
- Nasty Women Get Shit Done PDX
- War Resisters League--Portland
-Tree of Life Educational Fund
- Friends of Sabeel North America
- Lutherans for Justice in the Holy Land
- Village Coalition
- Buddhist Peace Fellowship
- Mental Health Workers Unite
- American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)
- St. Francis of Assisi Parish
- Augustana Lutheran Church
- Unite Oregon
- Commission on Hispanic Affairs
- Oregon Latino Health Coalition
- Portland Interfaith Clergy Resistance
- Oregon Working Families Party
- Q-Center
- Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon (EMO)
- Basic Rights Oregon
- Western States Center
- Portland Association of Teachers Social Justice and Community Outreach Committee
- Congregation Shir Tikvah
- Right to Survive
- Quest Center for Integrative Health
- SEIU Local 503
- 350 PDX
Community Leaders:
- Arun Gupta, independent journalist, contributor
The Nation, The Guardian, YES Magazine
- Nick Caleb, Environmental attorney and former City
Council candidate
- Rabbi Ariel Stone, Portland Interfaith Clergy
- Marta Guembes, Honorary Consul of Guatemala
- Donna Hayes, Grandmother of slain police brutality
victim Quanice Hayes