A video showing an Oregon State Police trooper throwing a well-known white power hand symbol at Saturday’s Black Lives Matter rally in Salem appears to have been directed at a member of the Proud Boys group, a far-right neo-fascist organization that admits only men as members and promotes and engages in political violence.
The gesture, which is listed as a “symbol of hate” by the Anti-Defamation League, was quickly followed by a pat on the back by what appears to be a Proud Boys member.
The counter-protestors at the rally included members of Proud Boys, Three Percenters, Boogaloo Boys, Patriot Prayer and other extreme right-wing groups, reports the Clypian. The heavily armed counterprotesters were seen carrying semi-automatic rifles, handguns, knives, magazines, bear spray and mace.
— Nat 🌻 (@ToshiiLynn) July 5, 2020
The Clypian reports:
The counter-protestors were separated from the Black Lives Matter demonstrators by two lines of OSP troopers, facing both groups. The trooper made the gesture as he walked towards the counter-protestors and received a pat on the back from one of the counter-protestors. There has been speculation over the identity of the officer, however, it has not been confirmed by OSP.
The video began circulating Saturday afternoon in Salem community organizing groups. The video was then posted on Twitter by the account @ToshiiLynn and, as of Sunday at 8:50 a.m., has garnered 1M views. The video was also posted on Facebook by Salem Community Organizers and had 23k views as of that same time.
The Salem Police Department responded on Twitter by noting that the officer was a member of the Oregon State Police.
The officer in the video clip is not a Salem Police officer. The uniform displays an OSP badge and the baseball cap has the agency name.
— Salem Police Dept. (@SalemPoliceDept) July 5, 2020