An attendee at an alt-right rally in Portland.
An attendee at an alt-right rally in Portland. Doug Brown

In the wake of the horrific stabbings aboard a MAX train in Portland that left two men dead last week, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler called upon the federal government to revoke rally permits for two upcoming white nationalist groups. One of those events, "March Against Sharia," is now headed for Seattle on June 10.

The suspect, a known white supremacist in Portland, allegedly stabbed Ricky John Best and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche, who were attempting to stop him from yelling anti-Muslim insults at two train passengers. Both of the men died. One of the passengers was wearing a hijab.

March organizer Scott Ryan Presler, a member of ACT for America, wrote in a Facebook announcement that the location change was "due to Mayor Wheeler's inflammatory comments and what we feel is an incitement of violence" which "shamefully endangered every scheduled participant."

Consequently, in order to ensure the safety of those who had planned on attending, we have taken the decision to cancel the Portland March Against Sharia.

Despite our desire to proceed, we cannot allow innocent Americans to be harmed by radical and violent anti-American zealots that Mayor Wheeler's comments have no doubt incited.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon tweeted that Mayor Wheeler's call to prevent the rallies is an attempt to quash free speech.

Hate speech and the marching and rallying of extremist groups is protected under the First Amendment.