It doesn’t seem to be particularly effective.
With leaf blowers, the protesters appear to be winning this battle with the feds, who have launched an immense amount of tear gas pic.twitter.com/A1D7dVhg0p
— Mike Baker (@ByMikeBaker) July 24, 2020
According to CripDyke, it isn’t, and neither are the leafblowers, which I can believe. Keep on fighting back, Portland!
Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says
Interestingly, that’s the NW corner of the courthouse. As I mentioned in my own post, the wind was coming from the NW and it was stronger than it has been recently. A good bit of the gas heading back into the sidewalk/portico area is strictly because of the wind itself. Something subtly misleading (I’m sure not intentionally) is that the people with leaf blowers are walking from north to south – in other words, with the wind. Maybe this is intentional strategy on the leaf blowers’ parts (work with the wind rather than against it makes sense), but what it doesn’t show is the SW corner of the building where the Wall of Moms sets up every night. Although I was mostly on 3rd street (a north-south street that passes along the west side of the courthouse) either at or just north of the NW corner of the courthouse last night (for reasons other than wind and avoiding tear gas, but it sure as hell worked out nicely for that too!), I did take a couple trips to the south side and the effects of the gas were MUCH worse there and lingered far longer than they did on 3rd street north of the courthouse or even on Salmon street (an east-west street that passes along the north side of the building). At one point it was a good 10 minutes since they released any gas and yet the effect on my breathing was as bad as it was 30 or 50 feet north of the 3rd street intersection with Salmon while gas releases were ongoing.
So, yeah. Wind was clearly playing the major role in how tear gas affected the whole area, though leaf blowers can have some effects locally. They’re just not as good as putting the damn things out with water.
But also notice that people are literally picking up the tear gas and throwing it back into the fenced area. This makes a HUGE difference – more than the leaf blowers – in terms of where the smoke ends up, and though probably illegal, it’s probably also fun for the people willing to risk jail who pick the things up and throw them back to their sources.
You can tell how many people are hoping to get a chance to throw a canister back into the Fed’s house by how many are wearing gloves in July.
PS: If you want to picture where I was most often last night, look at the white van in the background/left of that leaf blower video. I was about 3-4 steps closer to the camera, then 7-8 steps off to the left from where the driver’s door is on that van.
Marcus Ranum says
There are pretty good charcoal-filtered chemical masks available from various surplus stores for about $100 apiece. The nice thing is they mostly have lexan face pieces which can also stop a rubber bullet or a rock. I don’t want to sound like Marie Antoinette but it seems a better thing to wear than a bandanna.
These federal police need to be tarred abd feathered. Not with hot tar (that’s nasty) but the silver driveway paint’d hold feathers on just fine.
The city of Portland also declared that the steel fence being used as a barrier is an illegal obstruction and ordered that it be removed.
Mrdead Inmypocket says
That they’re deploying chemical agents is unconscionable in the first place. But especially when there are other factors to take into account.
I recall a study done around five years ago. Lets see if I can find it, be right back. HERE it is. So apparently exposure to teargas can lead to higher rates of susceptibility to respiratory illness. Deploying teargas now is a criminal act.
Interesting how they quickly ran out of ppe for Healthcare workers, but never seem to run out of teargas.
Farther down that twitter feed, you’ll see/hear the protesters playing the Star Wars Imperial March. Nice touch for subtly (or would that be overtly) labeling the feds as Storm Troopers.
It’s a mystery how tear gas canisters are not lethal weapons when the police fire them at protesters, but suddenly become lethal when lobbed back at the police. Is this some sort of “body and blood of Christ” transubstantiation miracle being performed by the priests of anarchy?
The Vicar (via Freethoughtblogs) says
Since the Storm Troopers were pretty obviously modeled on the Nazis, that’s a decent callout.
Somewhat irrelevantly, this discussion of chemical agents and wind reminds me of Stanislaw Lem’s The Futurological Congress (much better in my opinion than Solaris, cetainly much funnier). Annoyingly, I can’t find my copy, but from memory, there’s a scene in which police are attacking protestors, and start using LTN (Love Thy Neighbour), a psychoactive gas that’s supposed to pacify them. The LTN blows back on the police, who are suddeny overcome with remorse, and begin begging the protestors to beat them with their own batons to atone for their crimes.