Good morning, Portland. Here's the news you need to start your day:
Castaways: Immigrant men who've been detained in a Sheridan, Oregon prison have filed court documents describing their treatment behind bars. One poignant takeaway: "We were very sad. We felt as if we are stuck on an island in sea and we cannot tell and ask anything from anyone."
Fire Season's Back: Governor Kate Brown has declared a state of emergency over the number of wildfires quickly spreading across Oregon. One of the largest, dubbed the Substation Fire, has devoured more than 50,000 acres just southeast of The Dalles. One person died yesterday while attempting to protect their home from the flames.
Emergency Response: A new pilot program to help bail out Portlanders teetering on the edge of eviction is working. But is it a long-term fix?
MAPS! Have you read the Mercury's excellent and whimsical feature story this week on Oregon maps? DO IT!
Anarchy in PDX: What was anarchy like in Portland before the internet? Here's a wonderfully thorough tweet thread about the ancestors of Antifa and the Portland police.
Journalist Revolt: White House press corps reporters are joining together to fight back against the Trump administration's notorious question-dodging. Here's a great example of that from yesterday's press briefing with Sarah Huckabee Sanders. A free press isn't free until all press is free. Or something.
Oh Hai Jeff: Here's a giant statue of shirtless Jeff Goldblum that's inexplicably been erected in London to commemorate Jurassic Park's 25th anniversary.
25ft Jeff Goldblum statue pops up in London to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Jurassic Park, which was June 11th, a month ago. Also none of the movie was filmed in London nor is Jeff Goldblum a native of the English capital. So let's just bask in its nonsensical glory. pic.twitter.com/TKQKozleMn
— Adam Ricard (@Adam1021) July 18, 2018
Israeli Apartheid? Yeah, I said it. That's what Arab Israelis are calling a new Israeli law signed by President Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday that defines the country as "the homeland of the Jews." The law also makes Jerusalem the country's capital, Hebrew the official language, and declares that the right of national self-determination is "unique to the Jewish people." The law also removes Arabic, spoken by 20 percent of the country's population, as an official language of Israel.
Speaking of Apartheid: Barack Obama (remember him?) was in South Africa yesterday for the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela's birth, where he delivered his first major address since leaving the White House in 2016. He's still got it. Let us bask in the healing powers of an Obama oration:
Pres. Obama: Democracy demands getting inside "the reality of people who are different than us."
"You can't do it if you insist that those who aren't like you because they're white, or because they're male...that somehow they lack standing to speak on certain matters." pic.twitter.com/NHPR9cQmpQ
— ABC News (@ABC) July 17, 2018
Oh, And: Men are getting on Obama's nerves. That must be hard for him.
Now, look into Obama's eyes as he does a dad shuffle in Kenya.