Portland demonstrators knock down statues during ‘Indigenous Peoples Day of Rage’

Anti-colonization protesters aren't here for the statues of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.

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In the spirit of Indigenous Peoples Day, protesters took to the streets of Portland, Oregon to express their lack of enthusiasm for some of the men responsible for shaping this country.

Protesters promoted the Sunday night event on social media and called it “Indigenous Peoples Day of Rage,” per Oregonlive. Sunday was the day before Columbus Day, an anniversary that historically is known as the celebration of the day Christopher Columbus discovered America. But in recent years, some states have decided to rename the day Indigenous Peoples Day in celebration and remembrance of the native people who originally inhabited this land.

A protester stands over a toppled statue of President Theodore Roosevelt during an Indigenous Peoples Day of Rage protest Sunday in Portland. (Photo by Nathan Howard/Getty Images)

The protesters took charge at the statues of President Abraham Lincoln, President Theodore Roosevelt and at the Oregon Historical Society. There were about 200 people marching down West Burnside Street dressed in all black. At about 8:51 p.m., they took down the “Theodore Roosevelt, Rough Rider” statue. Roosevelt’s disdain for Native American was open, and his policies reflected them.

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At about 8:59 p.m., protesters set their eyes on the Abraham Lincoln statue. Lincoln contributed to the mass execution of 38 Santee Sioux, who were accused of raping and murdering Anglo settlers, according to History.com.

Then, the crowd reached the Oregon Historical Society and defaced a mural depicting the Lewis and Clark expedition. According to the Washington Post, a Black slave was instrumental in helping during their famous voyage, but afterward, Clark refused to set him free.

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Protesters called for people to not film the event. One onlooker who didn’t follow their instructions was met with a laser and a liquid splashed in his face.

Portland Police called the event a riot, and about an hour after the first statue was pulled down, they ordered demonstrators to return home and disperse. According to a source, officers did make several arrests.

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