PORTLAND, OR -- U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) met with high school students Friday, on the second anniversary of the Capitol Insurrection. He called it an act of domestic terrorism and asked the teens to push back against hate groups. "What’s so troubling to me, is the prospect of these very large groups who are committed to disorder and violence to achieve what they want," He told the students gathered at Portland's Grant High School, "We’ve got to have everybody in our state saying ‘No. Not on our watch. Not going to be tolerated. Not here’."
Wyden also said he believes the events of January 6, 2021 and last week's delay in elected a U.S. House Speaker are related. "Political polarization is a byproduct of our time," He said, "We’re very divided in this country. Political scientists say we’re divided right down the middle." He encouraged students to get involved and to vote, "As young people and communities turn out and say ‘we want change.’
Students had a wide range of questions for the Oregon Democrat, topics varied from green energy policy to home affordability and gentrification. Asked about rising crime rates and gun violence, he said he believes mental health professionals should be more involved, "The simple ‘it’s this problem and it’s got a one-size-fits-all solution’ should give way to CAHOOTS." That’s a Eugene-based mobile crisis-response program now receiving federal funding.