Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Oregon, My Oregon

Clearly, the contagion from California has taken a deep hold. From PM, Portland ex-journalist lauded for covering right-wing groups found mentally unfit for hate crimes trial

On Thursday, former Portland journalist Michael Bivins, 35, was ordered to the Oregon State Hospital after being found unfit to stand trial on May 3rd. He was set to stand trial for arson, four counts of criminal mischief, and five bias crimes against religious institutions in 2022. Bivins was accused of vandalizing the Shir Tikvah and the Jewish Synagogue Congregation Beth Israel, as well as setting fire to the Muslim Community Center of Portland while people were inside.

According to KOIN 6, Bivins was homeless in the months leading up to his arrest in May of 2022. He was arrested by the Portland Police Bureau, with the assistance of the Beaverton Police Department, after he reportedly visited a television news station and demanded to speak to reporters.

Prior to this he was known for his coverage of right-wing rallies and protests including many viral videos of riots in Portland. In May of 2020, The Post Millennial Editor-at-large Andy Ngo broke the news of Bivins' Arrest. Ngo said, "His last DM to me in 2020 was a message critical of me posting #Antifa riot mugshots."

At the time of his arrest, journalists who had worked with Bivins began to distance themselves from him. The news editor for Willamette Week, Aaron Mesh, said, "Mike Bivins wrote for @wweek from 2017 to 2019. He covered street brawls and other political polarization for us (along with selling video to local and national outlets). We're conducting a review of his work."

"Since I expect to get asked about this: Mike and I shared a byline once on a story about rising right-wing extremism in Portland, but we reported and filed entirely separately and the story was stitched together later in editing. I really can't speak to his life, or this event," freelance journalist Corey Pein said.

Just because he's crazy doesn't mean he isn't a journalist anymore. I mean, look at Hunter Thompson. 

Also, Hat Hair's John Sexton reports Portland fentanyl deaths are up nearly 50% over last year's record, but I think that's more or less generally true across the country, and more a function of Joe Biden's disastrous border policy than Portland's anti-police attitude, although I'm sure that contributes.

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