Military and Police

Shameful: Portland, Oregon’s Mayor Won’t Allow City’s Cops to Help ICE Agents in Danger

The city of Portland, Oregon is known for its picturesque neighborhoods, historical buildings, and more microbrew pubs than you can throw a wood-carved tap handle at. Unfortunately, having been on the receiving end of a frequent flow of Marxist, anarchist, socialist, etc. agitators coming up to Seattle to inject violence into the latest, leftist lunatic demonstration of the week, Portland is also known for its contribution to the political degradation of a nation. This week, it has, as they say, upped the ante.

According to a story by Stephen Dinan in the Washington Times, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler “encouraged Occupy ICE, saying he supported their cause and didn’t want Portland’s police to interfere with their demonstration.” Mayor Wheeler is using the local police to advance his leftist, social justice diktats, by intentionally ignoring the risks to federal police. I’ve warned about this. This is bad.

Think about what this means? His Honor seems to believe federal employees chuck their constitutional rights out the window at the city limits when they enter Portland. Last I checked, ICE requires their law enforcement agents to be American citizens, whom, by definition, fall under the protection of the U.S. Constitution. (Strange that leftists feel even illegal aliens are under the full protection of the Constitution but, apparently, not federal cops.)

The 14th Amendment guarantees the government cannot “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” I’m pretty sure ICE agents qualify as “persons.” Does Mayor Wheeler believes ICE agents are persons? How better to demonize an enemy than to dehumanize them.

December 2017: Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler with Barack Obama. (Credit: Facebook/Ted Wheeler)

Seemingly, Mayor Wheeler doesn’t believe in equal justice, does he? Social justice obviously forms his political, social, and cultural conscience. His radical leftist ideology informs him to treat people differently depending on various leftist political “victimhood” factors. One factor, evidently, is you only merit Portland Bureau of Police protection if you agree with Wheeler’s political positions.

What a lousy human being Wheeler must be, judging by his unconscionable actions. Now, I don’t make that statement lightly. His actions may be born of ignorance rather than malice, but the result is the same: He’s putting cops at risk.

People are welcome to their peaceful political opinions. But, I’d argue the mayor’s position is not a peaceful one. In fact, it’s loaded with all manner of potential violence. One form of violence is that committed by leftist demonstrators against ICE agents and federal property. (Incidentally, anyone else see the tons of garbage left behind by these ostensibly environment-loving, social justice warriors?)

“Left-wing Occupy ICE PDX protesters left massive amounts of garbage and ‘human waste piling up’ for the city to clean at taxpayers’ expense outside Southwest Portland’s US Immigration and Customs Enforcement headquarters.” (Credit: Facebook/Haydee Pavia)

By prohibiting Portland police officers from responding to calls for assistance from their federal law enforcement brothers and sisters, Wheeler is committing a heinous act: denying to American citizens the equal protection of the laws. Via virtue-signaling, Wheeler has assumed the mantle of the universal arbiter of what is good and right. Chairman Wheeler will decide if you merit police protection in his town. What kind of mayor—kind of person—does that?

I have to point out that the mayor’s actions are also yet more reasons for cops de-policing. Morale implodes when leaders don’t allow their cops to be cops. And assisting other cops is a huge part of being a cop. American law enforcers are a tight lot. There are few professions where employees trust each other with their lives: military, firefighters, and cops come to mind.

I can’t convey to you the frustration a law enforcement officer would feel from having an elected leader order him/her not to assist a fellow cop in danger. We view all law enforcement as family. For a mayor to order his cops not to assist another cop in need, whether municipal, university, county, state, tribal, or federal, is unthinkable. It’s anathema to the reason cops exist.

So, what happens the next time one of Wheeler’s local political opponents call the police because someone has threatened to assault them, or they’ve been a crime victim? Will the mayor order his police department to flag phone numbers or home and work addresses of political opponents, so he can put them on a no-response list?

Does Wheeler’s political prohibition against using “his” police force to defend ICE agents extend to other American citizens with whom the mayor disagrees politically? Seems like a ridiculous question, right? Well, it is ridiculous, as ridiculous as an American mayor withholding police services from his fellow Americans, under his protection, in his city.

What’s next for this leftist radical mayor? What if an Occupy ICE PDX demonstrator sets the ICE detention center on fire? Will Mayor Wheeler allow his firefighters to put out the blaze?

The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own and are not the view of OpsLens which seeks to provide a platform for experience-driven commentary on today's trending headlines in the U.S. and around the world. Have a different opinion or something more to add on this topic? Contact us for guidelines on submitting your own experience-driven commentary.
Steve Pomper

Steve Pomper is an OpsLens contributor, a retired Seattle police officer, and the author of four non-fiction books, including De-Policing America: A Street Cop’s View of the Anti-Police State. You can read a review of this new book in Front Page Magazine and listen to an interview with Steve on the Joe Pags Show. Steve was a field-training officer, on the East Precinct Community Police Team, and served his entire career on the streets. He has a BA in English Language and Literature. He enjoys spending time with his kids and grand-kids. He loves to ride his Harley, hike, and cycle with his wife, Jody, a retired firefighter. You can find out more about Steve and send him comments and questions at

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