ARRESTING POWER: RESISTING POLICE VIOLENCE IN PORTLAND, OREGON uses archival materials, documentary footage and interviews with community members, activists and organizers to uncover Portland’s unique history of policing and race relations, emphasizing its rich history of resistance from the late 1960s to the present.The documentary "provides a historical and political analysis of the role of the police in contemporary society and the history of policing in the United States. It provides a context for the systemic racism in Portland, with its history of exclusion laws, racial profiling, red-lining and currently active gentrification practices.
It also provides a historical outline of resistance movements that have been active throughout the past 50 years, from the Portland Black Berets and Black Panther Party to police observation organizations like Portland Copwatch and Portland Community Liberation Front.
Most importantly, the film explores alternatives to the current system of policing and considers strategies for keeping communities safe from harm without the threat of constant surveillance and ubiquitous violence." (from the filmmakers' Kickstarter site)
In the current context of a nation-wide uprising against police violence, and the local group Don't Shoot/Portland doing regular actions and gaining high visibility, this film will have particular relevance and resonance and should add an important historical dimension to the ongoing activism and discussion over the role of the police and the possibilities for real accountability and civilian oversight.
The Portland Premiere of Arresting Power is this Thursday January 15th, 2015 7pm at the Northwest Film Center Whitsell Auditorium 1219 SW Park Avenue.