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18 August 2020

You Are Enough Rally Set For Rogue River Aug. 29

 Organizers hope to open a dialogue, understanding

By Brad Smith

ROGUE RIVER, Ore. -- A special rally is planned for Aug. 29, including a march, a BBQ and some entertainment -- an event aimed at raising awareness of racial dynamics in Rogue River.

“We call it 'You Are Enough,’” said event organizer Dominique Toyer. “It’s a peaceful, family friendly  event with the goals of opening a dialogue with the community and promoting an understanding. There are people in Rogue River who feel there's a problem with racism. They see it, they've experienced it. They want to talk about it, again, with the hopes of making the community aware of the problem.”

Toyer is part of the Southern Oregon Coalition for Racial Equity, located here in southern Oregon. She was active in the BLM rallies held in June and has participated in events held elsewhere in Oregon, most recently in Coos Bay. She appeared at a Rogue River city council workshop a few weeks ago and talked about racism in the community.

“I know it made some of the councilors uncomfortable. It’s not an easy thing to discuss nor to acknowledge,” she said. “But, if you ignore the problem -- it’s not going away. It’ll fester and get worse. No one wants to think that something bad happens in their town. But, unfortunately, it does happen and you need to face it, talk about it.”

Mayor Wayne Stuart and city administrator Mark Reagles both felt Toyer was “very brave” for coming to the meeting and discussing the issue. However, neither agreed that there was a problem.

“We’re a very diverse community, we don’t have a problem with racism here,” Stuart said, “I don't think it’s an issue.”

Rogue River isn’t that diverse -- not with nearly 94 percent of residents white and the rest made up of various other races. And, when looking at local social media posts, many residents feel that anyone associated with the BLM movement is a “Marxist” or “terrorist.” A number of current and former residents contacted the The Rogue Free Press and shared their experiences with racism in Rogue River. The local VFW and some businesses were noted as some of the biggest offenders.

In short, there’s a problem.

“The best way to address something like this is by opening a dialogue,” Toyer said. “That’s our goal. Dialogue. Awareness. Share an understanding. All of that leads to a better community.”

Toyer said at 10 a.m. Aug. 29, there would be a march through town followed by a barbeque at Palmerton Park. People will speak about their experiences being biracial and some entertainment is planned.”

“I hope people will come out and join us,” she said. “It’s going to be a good time.”

Toyer said brochures about the event will be distributed throughout Rogue River sometime this week or so. In the meantime, other events are planned throughout the Rogue Valley and beyond.

“I want a better world for my son,” she said. “I want a better world for all children. That’s why we do this.”

Saturday, Aug. 29, will be a defining moment for Rogue River. It will be interesting to see how some residents will react.

Toyer is a member of the Southern Oregon Coalition for Racial Equity. It's been corrected and The Rogue Free Press apologizes for the mistake.


20 comments:

  1. Well for us native Oregonians you blm or as I say blm hypocrites they don't matter in Chicago or new York any inner city if your a black kid. You can take your antifa followers your radical bullshit movement play your games in some libril shit hole taking the local antifa losers with u brad,justice and the rest of u mask wearing cowards..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Antifa?
      Antifa has nothing to do with this.
      Where was that mentioned?

      Delete
    2. I'm a native Oregonian. Fifth generation.
      Ontario. That's where I was born and spent my youth on the family's ranch near Brogan.
      And, I don't know where you get this Antifa from.

      Delete
  2. Becareful people on Facebook talking about guns and weapons to peaceful protesters.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some in Rogue River have the chance to react to this peacefully and maybe learn something new.

      One would hope that happens.

      Delete
  3. Excellent. I hope this event is successful and helps ooen dialogue.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope so too.
      This meltdown from some is sad and pathetic at the same time.

      Delete
  4. You know Brad, you stirred up a whole bunch of BS for absolutely no reason. You are not a reporter and you certainly don't work for any local press.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 1. I've been a reporter for several years. The Siskiyou Daily News, Folsom Telegraph and Roseville Press-Tribune have my articles online.
      2. I was a freelance reporter (stringer) for the Rogue River Press starting in 2011. Since then, I witnessed a number of racially charged incidents; people contacted me about their experiences.
      It happened.
      If you don't like those facts, well, that's your choice.
      If you want to defend a community that has a problem with racism, again, that's your choice.

      Delete
  5. The only racism this community has is from people like yourself-idiot.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Again, not according to those who live there.
    Rogue River has a problem.
    Hopefully, people will attend You Are Enough and learn from it.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Before you slander or little community of Rogue River, how about some concrete proof not just "well I heard".

    ReplyDelete
  8. I witnessed some of these things. I was there. Did you miss that?
    And, look at other response in various posts. A number of others have had bad experiences.
    The reality is this: All communities have issues with racism and other societal ills.
    The difference with Rogue River is that some here refuse to acknowledge the problem and to overreact like petulant conspiracy theory woo woo believing cranks.
    Not to mention threats against other people.
    Meantime, I leave some great screenshots of locals having severe meltdowns over some folks having a BBQ.
    A goddamned BBQ and discussion about racism.
    It's not my fault Rogue River looks like a bunch of 1950s' throwbacks.
    That's on them.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Folks, I AM NOT A RESIDENT OF ROGUE RIVER, BUT MY OFFICE IS THERE. ITS A FABULOUS LITTLE COMMUNITY. IF THERE IS SOME BIGOTRY, DONT LET THAT DEFINE YOU. I LIVED IN CHINA, CANADA, AND ALL OVER THE USA, INCLUDING IN BLACK COMMUNITIES. ITS THE HUMAN CONDITION TO TREAT PEOPLE AS "OTHERS" WHEN THEY DONT FIT IT. EVERYONE DOES IT. ITS BIOLOGICAL. WE NEED TO BE BETTER.

    PLEASE DO NOT COUNTER PROTEST!! THAT WOULD BRING LOTS OF BAD PRESS. JUST SHOW UP, BE NEIGHBORLY AND ENJOY EACHOTHERS HUMANITY. USE THIS AS AN OPPORTUNITY, NOT A BATTLE.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I entered a response last night and someone took it off
    That is not freedom of speech I agree with the mayor that there is not a problem. There are skilled people that can twist things to influence a quiet and peaceful town to cause dissention and unrest. Don’t let that happen
    I also reD that more rallies are planned over southern Or
    that weekend Be wise and careful

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 1. This is a private media platform. An IP, if you will. If your comments violate Community Standards, oh well.
      2. The mayor is oblivious to the serious problems that exist. A number of Rogue River residents have experienced racism. It's there, it happens.
      3. The You Are Enough rally is a peaceful event and the organizers merely want to open a dialogue.
      The only threats of violence I've seen have come from locals who, when you read their remarks, show a high degree of both ignorance and hate.

      Delete
  11. How do we know it's there? How do we know it exists. There are these kinds of things whenever you get people together.
    You don't just call someone racist for them expressing their opinion.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 1. People have come forward with stories of their kids called the N-word by neighbors or complete strangers; some people refuse to go back to the VFW because of racist remarks made there; I personally heard a planning commissioner use a racial slur and others thought it was funny. It exists.
      2. No. It doesn't have to happen. It needs to be called out.
      3. Joe McPherson used racist terms regards Covid-19. His opinion. Fine. People also have the right to boycott his business.

      Delete
  12. I think you're trying to paint a rosey picture of blm and that they arent joined at the hip with far left anarcho-communists that have been burning and looting for over 80 days in Portland. Go ahead and have your bbq and enjoy yourself, but dont try to pee on our heads and tell us its raining. If blm isnt partnered up with antifa why havent they denounced them publicly instead of rioting with them in all the major cities?

    ReplyDelete
  13. Since when is hosting a BBQ an act of domestic terrorism?
    I was there at the Medford rallies. The BLM protesters and others there were very peaceful.
    The problems happened when people like Chris Biggs, a man with violent criminal record, drove his pickup truck into a crowd of peaceful protesters.
    Or the other two gun-wielding agitators -- one diving a car with Trump stickers -- who threatened protesters.
    Other than that, it was a peaceful event.
    Rogue River has a problem with racism. This is about opening a dialogue about that problem.
    Why don't you go and listen to what they have to say.

    ReplyDelete

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