In this conversation on race, I’m joined by Kathleen Saadat veteran civil rights activist in Portland, Oregon.
Kathleen shares her observations on the demonstrations in Portland, the federal troop presence, tear gassing of demonstrators and controversies surrounding the Moms and the Dad with Leaf blowers.
• The fact that there have been large numbers of Black people in Portland, Black clubs, and soul food restaurants in North and Northeast neighborhoods
• Sundown laws in Oregon but there were still Black people living there
• Protests in Portland, tear gas and attacks against protests
• Moms marching and dads coming with leaf blowers to stop the tear gas
• People who were committing violence were in the minority and mainly provocateurs
• Most protestors were peaceful
• The violence against Black people and minimization of the value of Black values
• The problem that agent provocateurs are seen as representing protestors
• How young people have been great at bringing people together for Black Lives Matter and social justice from different backgrounds and world views
• Importance of having a vision
• Why she hates cancel culture because people have been raised a certain way and we need to educate them
• Black people are a small number of people in the US and need to build coalitions • Kathleen Saadat’s vision for long-term change
• How to address the need for people to understand history and how government is supposed to work
• The need for a truth and reconciliation program in every state
• How we can bring people into the equality community
• Why self-righteousness is another form of violence
• Why we need conversations instead of just canceling people
• The danger of cancel culture
• Why we have to allow people to change
• Why the Ten Point Program of the Black Panther Party is still relevant
Bio for Kathleen Saadat
Kathleen Saadat has served Oregon’s LGBTQ community as a mentor and confidant for nearly 40 years. In 1976, she and six others organized Portland’s first gay rights march. Later, she worked with a team of city employees to craft the Portland’s civil rights ordinance, which prohibited discrimination against gay and lesbian people and discrimination based on legal source of income. In 1992, she served on the steering committee for the campaign against Ballot Measure 9, which, had it passed, would have rendered GLBTQ people second class citizens.
An activist and advocate for African American rights and the rights of other people of color, for women’s rights, and for economic justice for all, Kathleen was a planner and participant in Portland’s International Women’s Day Celebration..
Kathleen Saadat has received lifetime achievement awards from in recognition of her contributions to the efforts to “Keep Living the Dream” of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. She has been listed as one of “100 Who Lead in Oregon” by Oregon Business magazine.
She is a former member of the Oregon State University’s board of visitors for minority affairs.
Contact info for Kathleen Saadat