Four stories of life as a person of color in Salem

Claire Snyder and her 11-year-old child were followed through a Salem Walmart by a Proud Boys member.

He was unmasked and had a weapon attached at the hip. Snyder calculated he couldn’t have been more than 3 feet away.

As Snyder, who is Black, and her child passed multiple employees and shoppers, she hoped someone would notice and say something.

No one did.

She ended up ditching her cart and leaving the store.

It happened to Snyder several weeks ago, but similar racially charged incidents are happening more often in her hometown.

As an activist at the forefront of what has been labeled a racial reckoning, she believes Oregon’s deep-seated roots of racism have been amplified in the past year. Efforts to call out injustices after George Floyd’s death, she said, have actually emboldened those with racist tendencies.  

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