Convicted for Self Defense Against BLM Thugs

A conservative video journalist and blogger, who drew his legal handgun to scare off a rampaging crowd during a recent protest in Portland, has been convicted of felony charges.

By John Friend

A recent court decision involving a political activist’s attendance at a Black Lives Matter (BLM) protest last summer demonstrates just how tyrannical America has become in an era of political correctness, hostility toward the Second Amendment, and a glorification of minorities and leftist activists.

In Portland, Ore., Michael Strickland, a 37-yearold conservative blogger, journalist, and activist who maintains the popular YouTube channel “LaughingAtLiberals,” was recently found guilty of 21 felony and misdemeanor charges stemming from his presence at a BLM protest in early July of last year.

Strickland, known for his coverage of radical leftist events, was filming a BLM protest in downtown Portland on the evening of July 7 when he was confronted by a large group of hostile BLM protesters, some of whom were masked, armed with flag poles, and making threats against Strickland while advancing toward the citizen-journalist.

It must be noted that radical leftist protesters, often masked, violently assaulted their political opponents—and even innocent bystanders—repeatedly throughout the 2016 election season, causing personal injury and private property damage on numerous occasions. Additionally, BLM protests often devolve into riots, where violence, looting, and destruction take place on a massive scale.

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Fearing for his safety and being completely outnumbered, Strickland briefly drew his Glock semiautomatic handgun to ward off the hostile crowd that was hounding him. Amateur video footage of the protest and confrontation shows Strickland retreating while being pursued by a group of BLM protesters before eventually brandishing his firearm, for which he had a legal concealed carry permit, only to quickly reholster his weapon after the situation was de-escalated and the crowd backed off.

“What happened was there were about 10 or 12 people that surrounded me,” Strickland explained at the time. “They started pushing and shoving me. They were using their flag staffs as weapons. I’m backing up, they kept coming toward me. . . . That’s why I drew. . . . I was outnumbered, they were pushing and shoving me. . . . I feared for my life, because I was outnumbered, and they had weapons.”

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Video of Michael Strickland Drawing His Legal Firearm

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Shortly after the confrontation, a SWAT team arrived and Strickland was apprehended and taken into custody, charged with menacing and disorderly conduct.

At Strickland’s recent trial, Judge Thomas Ryan found the conservative activist guilty of 10 counts of unlawful use of a weapon, 10 counts of menacing, and one count of second-degree disorderly conduct for brandishing his legally concealed firearm at protesters that fateful evening.

While Strickland argued he was acting in self-defense, prosecutors contended he did not have a legitimate fear of being in imminent danger or of being physically hurt.

Strickland is scheduled to be sentenced in May.

The reaction to Strickland’s conviction from Second Amendment and free speech activists has been justifiable outrage.

“Given all the violence that we’ve seen at Black Lives Matter and other leftist demonstrations, Strickland clearly had cause to fear for his life,” Chris Cantwell, a leading libertarian and gun rights activist, writer, and host of “The Radical Agenda,” a popular podcast, recently explained to AFP in an email exchange.

“He displayed his weapon in its holster and warned the demonstrators as he walked backward, and they continued to pursue him as he retreated, so he pulled out his gun and pointed it at his assailants without firing a shot. He showed extraordinary restraint, and if the self defense laws of Portland, Ore. do not allow for this kind of measured defensive posturing, then they will certainly—and almost certainly already have—gotten people killed. If a gun owner has to wait until his assailants are on top of him to draw his weapon, then at that point he has little choice but to fire. George Zimmerman comes to mind. Strickland may have saved a lot of lives that day, not least of all his own.”

Unfortunately, Strickland’s case has received little mainstream coverage, a fact recently pointed out by Mark Walters of “AmmoLand.com,” a pro-Second Amendment website.

This is a clear-cut case of “self-defense, so compelling that the nation needs to see and hear it, yet it is blatantly and intentionally neglected by the ‘dominant’ and failing ‘mainstream media,’” Walters recently wrote.

After reviewing the footage of the confrontation, an objective viewer would have to find Strickland’s actions were entirely justifiable given the circumstances in which he was operating.

As readers of this newspaper know all too well, BLM protests are often violent, and those viewed as hostile or unsympathetic to the movement are regularly targeted by radical leftist activists. Strickland was one such example.

Cantwell believes Strickland should be praised, not condemned, for his actions that day. “He shouldn’t just be set free; he should be praised for his courage and his restraint,” Cantwell told AFP.

John Friend is a writer who lives in California.

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32 Comments on Convicted for Self Defense Against BLM Thugs

  1. John, John, John….your smug attitude belies how I feel about the good people ‘across the pond’…I’d like to think that I’m somewhat of an Anglophile, but John, bud, you’re NOT helping…

    To address your screed:

    “your comments are all over the place and seem to be predicated on hate and docility” – I’m THOROUGH, sir…there’s a difference. Even then, you throw out enough diatribes and misinformation that I could write a book on your first post alone. As for ‘hate’ — aah, the refuge of the ‘loony left’ when they’ve got NOTHING…deem a winning argument against their views as being spurred by ‘hate’. I’m quite used to that canard, and don’t give a damn. “Docile”…that’s baffling.
    John, as for ‘succumbing’ to evolutionary forces, you’ve ‘succumbed’ yourself to the very mistaken idea that society is somehow ‘evolving’, that we conservative ‘Neanderthals’ are a dying breed, whom should be grateful to be preached to by your ‘superior’ ideas. That’s pure Marx-Leninism, which has been most decidedly on the DECLINE worldwide, as billions have fled or overthrown its poisonous fruits. What we saw on the streets of Portland that sad day, is its dying convulsions, and Mr. Strickland’s heroic efforts to defend himself and his ideas. Hate to break it to you, John, we’re not dying out, we conservatives are waking up and asserting ourselves once again, not taking our God-given freedoms for granted anymore.
    As for which country is experiencing violence, have you tuned in lately to what went on in London, the fruit of its overly porous immigration policies? And just imagine what the outcome might have been had the UK anything like the USA’s 2nd Amendment, and its courts and law enforcement not interference in its citizens rights to keep and bear arms and to engage in self-defense. Perhaps some of those fallen might yet be with us.

  2. Ha ha,

    Kudos to Strickland for a very measured response, and to surviving what was turning into one of those situations where a BLM mob sends someone to the hospital.

    Appeals and everything are going to cost him a lot of money. But what price can you put on your health.

    His biggest mistake, though, may have been to base himself in uber-socialist Portland. It’s the same everywhere latte liberals run the show. Nobody is supposed to defend themselves, only the police are allowed to do that. People have been convicted even for defending themselves without a gun.

    The social theory these limousine liberals have is that criminals escalate in the weapons they carry if someone defends themselves. It is incumbent upon the plebians to meekly submit to punishment by the thugs until the cops arrive to rescue them (or they don’t) so that the Greater Social Good can be served. They always charge people who defend themselves, and it’s up to the defendant to spend a lot of time and money to survive the courtroom process.

  3. Douglas L Self and Tim, your aggressive response to my post is a clear illustration of the schism that is tearing your country apart. You seem to disregard reason, choosing to lean on the anachronistic 1791, 2nd amendment to resolve 21st century challenges. To make matters worse, the guy presenting the video has clearly brainwashed you both into his way of thinking (at one point he refers to a protester as a Black Panther – dumb ass). Douglas, your comments are all over the place and seem to be predicated on hate and docility. Tim, you seem to think that people who share your views you are in the majority? Thankfully your wrong, your views represent those of a tiny minority and given time, this hateful minority will succumb to evolutionary forces and simply fade away. Regarding my fellow Englishman, John Drake – what’s your point, you’re not making sense?

  4. When reasoning ceases, violence ensues. Time for 2A impeachment of leftist activist judges. They’ve declared war on We the People and themselves as enemy combatant/war criminals against the Constitution. There are zero appeals and only one appropriate sentence, to be carried out immediately.

  5. The BLM “thugz”, SJWs, and the uber-liberal twits running “Portlandia” didn’t want this white male to have any “chance”.

  6. I can’t wait to see what kind of sentence these Nazi’s give this man. The real result of cases like these is that there will inevitably be more injuries and/or deaths at protests in the future. After all, if they’re going to ruin your life, and throw you in prison, you might just feel that taking a few of these animals down with you is an appropriate response. And that is probably just what the Soros-funded SJW crowd wants.

  7. Failure of the Grand Jury and later common sense fail of the trial jury to acquit.
    three or more is a mob, using a force equalizer/weapon to de-escalate the threat in ones own defense should not be viewed or branded as a criminal act. The idea that you cannot go into an area because of high level potential for crime and governemnt saying you cannot defende your self is also un-exceptable.

  8. If you live in Portland, you should expect this kind of Political Correctness gone mad. It’s like moving to the USSR and then complaining about waiting in lines for toilet paper and potatoes.

  9. BLM, etc. do not want equality, they know that’s a pipe dream.
    What they want is revenge, plain and simple..

  10. With the corrupt system we have today, like I have said; “You’re on your own now”. There are no laws. No laws to protect you. There is only the opposite- law and judges to protect “their” agendas. If you are white, you are condemned by a system that is protecting muslims and blacks.
    Prove me wrong.

  11. @John Longman
    I too am from England and frankly find your comments at best naive at worst stupid. Perhaps you can imagine then having the hide kicked out of you by a gang of masked thugs who would have no issue putting you in casualty for not agreeing with their racist values. Perhaps you would prefer violence inflicted on you with no ability to defend yourself.
    Personally I don’t like those options and neither did he, he threatened the crowd with a legally licensed weapon until they backed off. Personally I would have done the same myself. However it seems in the US as in the UK that the rights of violent activists and criminals hold sway over citizens rights

  12. To John L.

    You’re an idiot. Please stay over there with the rest of the liberal english dumb asses. He was threatened with violence and defended himself without incident. And unfortunately we do have some idiots over here that would agree with you but we will be rid of them soon enough.

  13. Mr. Longman – at least you identified yourself as being from the UK. So if you’ve grown up swearing fealty to a sovereign (and don’t get me wrong, I like good Queen “Bess”), then it’s clear why you have no comprehension of our US Constitution, which includes an Amendment, in effect since 1791, which states that the “..Right to keep and bear arms shall NOT be infringed.” You want to lecture we Yanks about ‘civility’ b/c this man (LAWFULLY, IMO, and he needed a much better lawyer to defend him than evidently what he had) used a weapon, which, he had complied with the very unconstitutional ‘conceal and carry’ permitting process in his state (Oregon), of a firearm which he was in lawful possession and bearing thereof, to DEFEND himself against a gathering, hostile crowd, which in a COWARDLY manner menaced him en masse? Well, thanks to our FIRST Amendment, you have the right to express your opinion, ill-founded as it is, sir, and so I have as well…to express utter disgust and contempt for your haughty and presumptuous attitude towards we Yanks! Frankly, sir, whether we’re ‘civilized’ in YOUR estimation doesn’t matter one good goddamn to myself, nor likely many reading this forum. Why, pray tell, don’t you lecture these BLM cretins who, had this man not produced his pistol and warned the gathering mob not to ‘screw’ with him, would certainly have given him a severe ‘beatdown’, and, quite possibly, could have killed him, merely for asserting HIS First Amendment right to speak and assemble ‘peaceably’? It’s obviously that gaggle of lawless cretins had no similar peaceful intentions!

    This man’s use of his pistol was LAWFUL, Mr. Longman, and was done in EVERY spirit of what the Founders intended – that every man, regardless of social and/or economic station in life, has a right to self-defense, of himself and/or his loved ones, and a right to be as well armed, personally, as any given military member, since (s)he, by default, a member of the unorganized militia. I commend this man for having the foresight to not trust in the Portland police to defend him from violence. Sure, the “Po-Leece” can be there in MINUTES…when SECOND count! At least he’s alive…had he been killed by this thuggish mob, I doubt you’d shed one goddamned tear for him, nor portray THEM as discrediting America! No, I suspect you’d blame it on ‘society’, or ‘racism’, or ‘economic equality’, or all the other pathetic excuses that liberals cite to excuse the need for law, order, and personal responsibility.

    Please go back to jolly ol’ England and kiss the Queen’s ass, it’s evident that whatever stay in America, if indeed you came here, has taught you NOTHING of worth.

  14. Yeah he should get on the horn to Pacific Legal Foundation or US Concealed Carry Ass’n or some other legal defense foundation and appeal that shit up, up, up! There’s no way it’ll survive review in the Supreme Court, assuming they decide to take it up. But first he has to clear either Oregon Supreme Court or the 9th Circus, so he needs some support in order to outlast and overcome the slow-movers down at fuck squad HQ.

  15. I’m from England and cannot imagine what it’s like being threated with a gun. The mentality that supports guns as a solution to perceived threat (real or unreal) is totally bizarre. For those Americans who see this guy as a hero and don’t understand why he’s being prosecuted, sadly, your ideological stance makes all Americans look quite barbaric. Fortunately however, I know that there are significant numbers of Americans who would agree, that this mans irresponsible actions cannot not be tolerated in civil society.

  16. Michael Strickland should not have been found guilty. He did not fire the weapon and has a license to have the gun. The mob should not approach anyone the way they approached this group including Strickland..

  17. It becomes more and more clear that we can no longer share the same society with the left, which seeks only to destroy the Republic, turn us into dhimmi, and enslave us in our own land.

    Now, the leftists controlling Oregon courts have prohibited legal self defense, even by a single person against a group whose associates murdered 5 police officers in Dallas, more in Baton Rouge, and have assaulted, murdered, and injured others across the nation, were massed against the lone defender, and carrying potentially lethal weapons (ever been poked through the throat with a stick?).

    Communists/leftists/progressives are all on the same page…and have the same agenda. The destruction of America, and the civil society.

    From now on, we have to play by our own rules…Regard yourselves as guerrillas in active contest with tyranny. Stay anonymous; if you have to use a weapon in self defense, don’t leave your assailant alive to testify against you…If you don’t believe there are witnesses (or cameras) to your act of self-defense, don’t wait around for the cops to show up so that you can have your day in court, unless you are in your own house (and even then, it’s iffy) because where leftists control the system, there can be no justice for us…

    Finally, realize that we are at war…and that we are going to have to fight…whether we will win, is another question…

  18. The Right to Life (including self-defense) is a GOD-GIVEN RIGHT, which government cannot either grant or take away. The 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution guarantees this Right. Mr. Strickland had a concealed carry permit, so the SWAT team had no business arresting him .. instead, they should’ve arrested the BLM protesters who went after him. They’re the aggressors.
    I hope Mr. Strickland not only appeals that sick verdict, but also file suit for a minimum of $10 million.

  19. Portland is a socialist city, with a Mayor that lacks values. So why should we believe the judges would be any different. Portland is very anti 2nd Amendment. What he should do, is appeal the ruling and find a good expert witness in the use of judicial Deadly Force, Massad Ayoob is a good one to review your ruling. He’s not cheap, but he will let you know where you stand. Another good one to find, is a 2nd amendment lawyer by the names of Marty Hayes, that runs the Firearms Academy of Seattle.

  20. Michael Strickland needs a gofundme site so American’s can rally around him and help him get the best lawyer- since this sets a precedent for all of us.

  21. Mr. Strickland needs to hire a Gun Rights attorney and appeal this travesty of justice.

  22. Why didn’t you put up a link to the video mentioned so it can be posted to social media? Main stream media can be bypassed by social media memes… no video!

  23. I am wondering whom represented Mr. Strickland and weather or not he pressed charges against his assailants. The sponsors of this BLM protest should be sued for fomenting assaults and. Endangerment of innocent non participants. Review your footage and identify the participants and target them with lawsuits and press charges. Sue the incorporations for not protecting your GOD given rights to peacefull assemble without being attacked for ones views by individuals that were accommodated by the tyrants. You were armed and the rules of engagement for an armed confrontation are authorization for lethal force if the possibility exists for physical harm on the possessor of the firearm, see the local police manual for such incidents and how they are instructed to handle such situations.
    Call the NRA

  24. as perverted as it it, the conviction is a pinprick compared to the fact that he’s alive. Quite likely he would not be alive, had he not been armed and ready to defend his own life.

  25. Judges are generally people who failed to make a living as attorneys and got lucky. They never get elected for their professional record, proven insight or fairness. Do we anywhere in this country demand specifically that prospective judge take an oath to apply the law as written without his/her personal opinion?

  26. This journalist should get a medal for CONSTRAINT !!!
    If he’d acted on his fear of severe injury, 15 -16
    BLM thugs should be bleeding.

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