AP featured image
Protesters march during a Juneteenth rally and march through a historically Black neighborhood in Portland, Ore., Friday, June 19, 2020. Juneteenth marks the day in 1865 when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, to take control of the state and ensure all enslaved people be freed, more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation. (AP Photo/Gillian Flaccus)

 

Tuesday morning, I reported on a lawsuit filed late on Monday afternoon, by a group of left-wing activists trying to get a permanent injunction against the federal law enforcement agents in Portland seeking to prevent them from using tear gas, pepper spray, and non-lethal impact munitions as crowd-control measures against rioters at the Hatfield Federal Courthouse in Portland.  The lawsuit can be found here.

The lead plaintiff is “Don’t Shoot Portland”, a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) charitable organization first formed in 2014.

The second named plaintiff is “Wall of Moms”, an “unincorporated association” formed in July 2020.  “Unincorporated association” is another way to describe a group of people with something in common, but no formal structure.  A “cabal”, or a “knitting group” or a “neo-Marxist agitator club.”

Well, it appears that Don’t Shoot Portland didn’t go on enough dates with Wall of Moms before exchanging rings at their shotgun wedding ahead of the Monday afternoon wedding/lawsuit as co-plaintiffs against the federal government.  Reports today are that a quickie divorce took place yesterday.

WOM — I hardly knew ya.

How did things fail so quickly?

Well, as it turns out, “Don’t Shoot Portland” — according to its webpage — “Is Black-led and community-driven. Founded in 2014 by Teressa Raiford, we are a direct community action plan that advocates for accountability to create social change.”

“Wall of Moms” — on the other hand — isn’t.  It’s a collection of mostly middle-aged liberal white women, founded and led by Beverly Barnum, a liberal middle-aged white woman.

Until last Friday, that is.

According to the Oregonian:

Portland Wall of Moms, a group formed in recent weeks and quickly recognized as a staple of nightly downtown protests, was accused publicly Wednesday of “anti-Blackness” by leaders of an existing, Black-led community group [Don’t Shoot Portland].

Uh-oh.  That doesn’t sound good.

Wall of Moms … announced Friday that its white leadership had rescinded their positions to allow women of color to be in charge. New leaders announced Friday include Teressa Raiford, executive director of Don’t Shoot Portland, Demetria Hester and Danialle James.

Sounds suspiciously like a hostile takeover to me.  I guess liberal white middle-aged women aren’t “Black enough” for a “Black-Led” group like “Don’t Shoot Portland.”

But I suspect a bigger problem is that “Don’t Shoot Portland” is already a 501(c)(3), and if they were going to be married to another 501(c)(3), “Don’t Shoot Portland” was going to damn well control it.

So, the founder of Wall of Moms was made to surrender the leadership of the “organization” in order to be “black-led”, and to have as its mission the defense of protesters advocating for social change.

But the Oregonian is reporting MORE news as of Wednesday — “Don’t Shoot Portland” went all “Cancel Culture” on the “White” Wall of Moms former leadership.  The Oregonian reported on a Don’t Shoot Portland Instagram post as follows:

“The lies are finally clear and we are sad but ultimately not surprised that anti-Blackness showed its ugly head,” read the post published on Wednesday by Don’t Shoot Portland….

The Wednesday post alleges that Wall of Moms founder Bev Barnum filed for business registrations without consulting the newly instated Black leaders and that the safety of Black members at the nightly protests in downtown Portland was overlooked….

The post said that issues of Black mothers’ safety have only come to light in the past 24 hours.

Barnum appeared to file three business registrations on Tuesday including one that makes The Wall of Moms a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Don’t Shoot Portland interpreted the filings to mean that Wall of Moms goal was to get federal officers out of Portland — not to support Black Lives Matter, according to the Instagram post. The newly instated Black leaders were not told about the registrations, according to the post.

“None of the Black leadership WOM claimed to implement knew about this,” the Wednesday post reads. “Combined with the lack of care for Black women, we were used to further the agenda unrelated to BLM.”

Don’t Shoot Portland’s statement was retweeted on Twitter by the Wall of Moms’ official Twitter account.

The Wall of Moms answered a commenter’s question saying, “The founder went rogue. Many of us do not agree with her decisions. And she does not currently have access to this account.

Filing for 501(c)(3) status means the person who registers the company CAN RECEIVE DONATIONS TAX-FREE.

Among the things a 501(c)(3) can pay for are SALARIES OF STAFFERS — and an Executive Director.

The person who registered the company CAN OPEN BANK ACCOUNTS IN THAT NAME.

Even though “leadership” of the “unincorporated association” was turned over to the black female leadership of Don’t Shoot Portland, that was a meaningless gesture when Barnum beat them to the Secretary of State’s Office in Portland and then filed the registration papers with the IRS listing herself as the founder.

“Push me out of the group I created?  Think again.”

The Oregonian article continues:

The Wall of Moms Facebook group page, set up by Barnum, was shut down Wednesday.

A new Facebook group has since formed called Moms United for Black Lives. A post from Faith Lightsy, a member of the group said she and others are in contact with Raiford, Hester and James to figure out what to do next.

“This group is only a few hours old with 3k members already…please be patient with us. I am in direct contact with Teressa and she has asked repeatedly this group be centered around Demetria and Danialle,” the post read.

Barnum is the third named plaintiff in the lawsuit filed on Monday.  It’s uncertain who controls the Wall of Moms entity that is a plaintiff in the lawsuit.

I’m guessing they’ll need separate conference rooms when they meet with their lawyers.  Divorces are ugly things.

The Twitter feed is on fire last night and today.  Here are just a few comments starting with the original one — at this point, WOM Official Twitter feed is in the hands of Don’t Shoot Portland.

There it is, right there.  Barnum sees beyond the city limits of Portland and realizes there’s money to be had.  She’s going to use her marketing savvy — see below — to make Wall of Moms a NATIONAL entity.

Teressa Raiford just wasn’t thinking “big” enough to suit Barnum.  It’s a big world out there, and there are a lot of “Mom Walls” needed.  Barnum is going to make sure everybody who needs one gets one — and get paid a nice salary to do so.

Rule No. 1 — It’s always about the money.

Rule No. 2 — When someone tells you it’s not about the money, refer them to Rule No. 1.

Raiford wanted her loyalists to control Wall of Moms.  Barnum outfoxed her.

A lawsuit — that’s a great idea.  Let’s file it in the federal courthouse where we are trying to protect the lives of others as they try to burn it down.  I know how to get there — I’ll drive.