Portland is on high alert today (Sept. 25) as hundreds of Proud Boys and supporters of the far-right group made their descent upon the city. Ahead of the rally, Oregon Governor Kate Brown called for a state of emergency.
“The pattern of these particular groups is clear: to intimidate, instigate and inflame,” Gov. Brown said on Friday (Sept 24).
Proud Boys, which has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, and counter-protesters chanting “Hey there, Proud Boys, you better hide. We can see your fascist side,” gathered at Delta Park in North Portland this morning.
The state of emergency Brown called was to prevent opposings sides from erupting into violence. It also called for local law enforcement authorities to be replaced with the state police and the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.
Around noon, the hate organization hosted speakers who delivered speeches that praised President Donald Trump and criticized Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler.
Long-rifle strapped Proud Boy assaults journalist during white nationalist gathering in Portland pic.twitter.com/31zvFFqnqZ— Nathan Bernard (@nathanTbernard) September 26, 2020
Wheeler publicly expressed his fear of the all-male group demonstrating in his city.
“I categorically condemn violence of all kinds by all people,” Mr. Wheeler said in a statement. “But let me be clear, the alt-right and white supremacist groups organizing to come to Portland on Saturday present the greatest threat we’ve faced so far.”
An hour later, it started raining and all the rallies came to an end.
The Portland Police Bureau arrested at least one person at that event, the New York Times reports.
Portland has become a hot spot of protests this summer, stemming from the police killings of Black people ever since George Floyd lost his life at the hands of a Minneapolis cop and Breonna Taylor was killed by a Louisville cop in her own apartment. As things continued to get tense in the city in July, Trump deployed federal agents who showed up and began throwing protesters in unmarked vans and now his administration is being sued.