Portland Federal Agents 'Proactive' Arrests Compared to 'Minority Report'

Twitter compared the actions of federal law enforcement in Portland to the film Minority Report after Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said the agency was "proactively" arresting people.

President Donald Trump deployed federal agents to the Oregon city, saying it was to quell violence and protect federal buildings after weeks of sustained protests since the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police in May.

But the move drew fierce criticism from local leaders, who say it has exacerbated the situation and have called for federal authorities to leave Portland.

Federal agents have repeatedly used force, including deploying tear gas and rubber bullets, to disperse protesters from the area outside the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse in recent days.

Last week, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum filed a lawsuit seeking to rein in the actions of federal agents, saying that officers had been hauling protesters away in unmarked cars far from federal property without identifying themselves.

In an appearance on Fox News on Tuesday, Wolf pushed back on the criticism.

"Any time that you attack a federal facility such as a courthouse there in Portland, that is a federal crime," he said.

"Attacking federal police officers and law enforcement officers which they have done for 52 nights in a row is a federal crime. And so the department, because we don't have that local support, that local law enforcement support, we are having to go out and proactively arrest individuals."

He added: "We need to do that because we need to hold them accountable. This idea that they can attack federal property and federal law enforcement officers and go to the other side of street and say, 'you can't touch me,' is ridiculous."

Wolf's remarks sparked outrage on Twitter, where some made comparisons to the 2002 science fiction film Minority Report, directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Tom Cruise.

In the film, based loosely on a short story by Philip K. Dick, a specialized police unit in the year 2054 apprehends criminals before a crime is even committed using gifted humans, called "Precogs" who can predict the future.

"Minority Report showed a dystopian future. Are we here now?" Democratic California Rep. Ted Lieu tweeted.

He added: "@realDonaldTrump's henchmen are proactively violating en masse the rights of Americans.@DHS_Wolf & @TheJusticeDept are causing unnecessary CHAOS."

Amee Vanderpool also shared a clip of Wolf's interview on Twitter, writing alongside it: "It's full on Minority Report except with really stupid people with no skill or real technology deciding who is going to pre-crime."

Filmmaker Adam Best also made the comparison, writing: "The Trump admin has now reached the Minority Report phase of this dystopian nightmare. The only thing that's missing is the precogs."

Wagnur James Au added: "The analogy doesn't really work all that well because at least the people getting swept up by the cops in "Minority Report" were actually right about to commit murder as opposed to say protesting against Black people being murdered by the cops."

Portland
Federal officers operate amid tear gas while clearing the street in front of the Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse on July 21, 2020 in Portland, Oregon. Paula Bronstein/Getty Images