At the Wednesday, June 28, city council meeting, Matt Rossell of In Defense of Animals—the group loosely organizing the weekly Saturday protests at Schumacher Fur Co. downtown—was there to tell his side of the story. Two weeks earlier, a Schumacher customer had stood in front of the council and accused the animal-rights activists of "terrorizing" downtown shoppers.
Rossell gave poised testimony to the contrary: "I want to make it really clear to city council that we have a vested interest in having peaceful demonstrations," he told the commissioners. "We don't want to lose the message by having the conversation turn to our behavior rather than the treatment of animals who live and die on fur farms." Rossell also asked the council to do "anything you can to help" get Schumacher Fur's owners to the table for mediation. AMY JENNIGES
For the past couple of years, the OHSU aerial tram has had something of an image problem—it's seen, even by many of its supporters, as an out-of-control project that's hemorrhaging cash.
Enter David Gonzalez, who was the operations manager for City Commissioner Sam Adams' office until last Monday, June 26, when he took over communications for the Portland Department of Transportation, largely to help sell the tram to the public.
His first step: Creating a MySpace page for the tram as a way to reach young Portlanders. At press time, about a week after its debut, myspace.com/pdxtram had a total of 23 "friends." SCOTT MOORE