What is the job of a mayor?
Speaking in generalities, of course, as I have not read Portland’s city charter — I would venture to guess that a mayor of a city like Portland would have primary responsibilities that included enforcing the laws and keeping the peace.
So why are Portland, Oregon’s streets such a mess with riots and violence? Well, maybe it’s because the mayor condones it.
Ted Wheeler, mayor of Portland since January of 2017, has been controversial in his post, to say the least. The city has been the scene of multiple immigration protests for which ICE has called him out, his city faces a homeless problem and he’s been a vocal critic of the president.
As of late, the streets of Portland aren’t fit for average citizens to walk or drive through because they are scenes of violent protests from left wing antifa radicals who oppose the right wing demonstrators. The two just don’t mix and the combination is often combustible.
Maybe the mayhem has become so prevalent there because the mayor is AWOL when it comes to directing law enforcement officials to stop the demonstrations and protests that are at the heart of the ills there.
The Washington Times reported Mayor Ted Wheeler standing behind a decision by police to not intervene when riots break out and innocent people are attacked.
On Friday, a viral video hit the internet depicting a mob of angry protesters beating a car driven by 74-year-old Kent Houser and breaking a window.
Shortly after the incident the mayor made a statement supporting the police’s decision not to step in.
Here’s the incident in question.
— KATU News (@KATUNews) October 7, 2018
And the mayor tweeted out his response.
I was appalled by what I saw in that clip and I support the decisions of the @PortlandPolice. I trust them. I believe them as the law enforcement professionals who have to weigh complex legal and safety issues, not only for the people on the streets but also for themselves. -TW
— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) October 12, 2018
Wheeler said in his tweet: “I was appalled by what I saw in the clip and I support the decisions of the Portland Police. I trust them. I believe them as the law enforcement professionals who have to weigh complex legal and safety issues, not only for the people on the streets but also for themselves. -TW”
Portland’s KATU News reported the driver as plowing through the crowd: “The driver was in a silver Lexus sedan when he drove into the crowd, striking a man and then accelerating down the street.
KATU News has since talked with the driver, who says he was following two other cars that made a right-hand turn when one protester stepped in front of his car and others surrounded it. He told police his vehicle sustained $3,000 in damages during the incident.”
The Daily Caller more accurately reported the sequence of events: “The video was captured by journalist Andy C. Ngo and shows an older gentleman in a Lexus turning at an intersection occupied by a host of antifa protesters. After making the turn against the orders of the protesters, a mob chases the Lexus down the street banging on the car, even going so far as to break a window. Officers reportedly watched the incident unfold from a block away.”
And while the mayor stands behind not standing behind law and order for regular Portland citizens, The Washington Times also notes he’s a supporter of ICE protesters who’s protests forced the ICE office in Portland to shut down because they claimed the mayor gave “stand down” orders during the demonstrations.
So this isn’t the first time we’ve seen actions like this from Mayor Wheeler and it’s possible it won’t be the last — unless of course the people of Portland vote him out because they are sick and tired of seeing their city be overrun by an angry mob.
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