In the first year following Trump’s election, reported hate crimes have risen exponentially nationwide. In Portland, Oregon metro area alone, there was a 200% increase in 2017. The targets of these hate crimes have been predominantly women, people of color, LGBTQ people, Muslims, and Jews. The hateful rhetoric of right wing ultra-nationalist and white supremacist groups like Patriot Prayer and the Proud Boys have inspired murderers like Jeremy Christian’s stabbing attack on the MAX train, and James Field’s rampage in Charlottesville that killed Heather Heyer and wounded many others.
In response to these threats, those of us who believe in equality, diversity, and social justice are exercising our constitutional right to preserve and defend the lives and safety of our communities, families, and friends at risk from fascist violence.
PDX Armed Against Hate seeks to provide an alternative to the ultra-right wing NRA and its racist dogwhistling through leading inclusive classes on firearms safety, group trips to the shooting range, and providing a supportive community of like-minded individuals to learn with and train beside.