Good morning, Portland! Hope you've enjoyed your few waking minutes blinking blissfully into space before reading the news this morning. There's no dancing around it: Today is definitively a Bad News Day.
Today's Toll: A white man (surprise, surprise) with a legally-obtained gun (surprise, surprise) fatally shot 12 people last night—including one sheriff's deputy—inside a crowded country western bar in the Southern California town of Thousand Oaks. He then died from suicide. Some of those inside the bar were allegedly survivors of last year's Las Vegas mass shooting. I'm not sure what to say about these horrific, disgusting acts of homegrown terrorism anymore.
"He died a hero. He went in to save lives, to save other people."
Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean honors sheriff's Sgt. Ron Helus who died after the Southern California shooting #Borderline pic.twitter.com/8XhShrgAGe
— TicToc by Bloomberg (@tictoc) November 8, 2018
RBG Down: Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg fell down and broke three of her sacred ribs! Where the hell were the people our taxpayer dollars pay to dive in front of her and cushion her fall with giant pillows? I truly don't think our country has the energy to handle a RBG emergency. Keep poppin' those multivitamins, girl.
Trump Meltdown of the Day: Don held his first press conference after the Midterm Elections and boy, was it a shitshow. He interrupted and scolded April Ryan (a Black reporter for American Urban Radio Networks) when she asked about Black voter suppression in Georgia. He told PBS' Yamiche Alcindor, another Black journalist, that her excellent question about white nationalism was "racist." He straight up banned CNN's Jim Acosta from the White House for asking him questions he couldn't answer. Here's the highlight reel:
Sessions Out: Promptly after imploding before the White House Press Corps, Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions and appointed Session's chief of staff, Matthew Whitaker, to acting attorney general. Whitaker has been publicly critical of the justice department's Russia investigation and now holds ultimate power over its direction. Here's what that means. Let that sink in: We now live in a world where firing Jeff Sessions from the AG's office is a bad thing.
Here's One Good Thing: Yesterday was Kukur Tihar, a Nepalese Hindu festival honoring the bond between dogs and humans. SWOON.
Protest Rules: Today, Portlanders will have their first (and, maybe, only) opportunity to speak their mind about Mayor Ted Wheeler's controversial new protest ordinance before it goes to a council vote. While lawyers and other city officials doubt the rule's constitutionality, Wheeler, Police Chief Danielle Outlaw, and city lawyers promise it's their best bet.
Wapato Down? The owner of Wapato Jail has applied for a demolition permit. When asked by the Mercury if the new-used facility will be leveled this month, owner Jordan Schnitzer put it bluntly: "No." But with little support from public officials, let alone the homeless community, what's next for Wapato? (Note: We don't have the answer)
Meth 2.0: The meth being peddled on Portland's streets has become stronger and cheaper in recent years—meaning more and more homeless Portlanders are fatally overdosing.