Here's your daily roundup of all the latest local and national news. (Like our coverage? Please consider making a recurring contribution to the Mercury to keep it comin'!)
• Mark Pettibone (the Portland man kidnapped by Feds) and Christopher David (the Navy vet who was ruthlessly beaten by feds for daring to ask a question) was among those who spoke to a Democratic roundtable of lawmakers, begging them to investigate the civil rights abuses perpetrated on Portlanders by officers from the Department of Homeland Security.
The White House press secretary claimed 3 federal agents were "likely left permanently blinded by the rioters" in Portland.— Zane Sparling (@PDXzane) August 4, 2020
Today, U.S. Homeland Security said that's not true.
Of the 277 injuries reported, some suffered "days-long" blindness.https://t.co/Td674AB3w6
• For the past two months, federal officers and Portland Police have in several cases been firing expired tear gas canisters at protesters—even though the effects of these old chemicals have been unstudied, and are probably wildly unsafe. Mercury contributor Abe Asher investigates.
• Speaking of getting gassed: Have you been tear gassed in Portland for exercising your right to free speech and assembly—or just being near the protests—in the last 68 days? If so, you should take this Kaiser Permanente survey about the community impact of tear gas.
• "Less-lethal" munitions (such as tear gas canisters) are meant to be fired at people's legs, so that they don't cause serious injuries to the head. But protesters have been hit in the head by these munitions, fired by both federal and local officers, over the last 68 days of protests. Check out the story from Mercury contributor Tuck Woodstock.
.@ACLU_OR rejects judge's suggestion that it determine who is a legit journalist via distribution of its blue vests: "Nobody should have to obtain a license to speak."— Karina Brown (@karinapdx) August 4, 2020
Issue may be decided in a hearing on Thursday.
• By the way, are you thinking about mailing in your ballot for this month's special election? If so, stick yer damn ballot in the mail by this THURSDAY if you want it to safely arrive in time! (Psst. The Mercury will even help you fill it out!)
• At least 25 children and staffers were infected by coronavirus while attending and working at Oregon's Trout Creek Bible Camp. (Huh. You'd think that God would've protected them! Guess they didn't have enough faith.)
• Another big day for Oregon COVID-19 infections with 342 new positive cases reported by the OHA, and five additional deaths.
• Multnomah County has released early conceptual drawings of what the newly refurbished (and much safer) Burnside Bridge could look like, and you have a chance to weigh in with your opinion.
IN NATIONAL NEWS:
• An insanely large blast has killed 70 and injured thousands in Beirut. The cause of the explosion isn't currently known, but a fire is suspected to have detonated a warehouse.
Seven different angles of the massive explosion in Beirut, Lebanon from this morning.— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) August 4, 2020
• Tropical Storm Isaias is whipping its way up the East Coast leaving 784,000 people without power.
• Suddenly, after realizing they could very easily lose control of the Senate this November, Republicans are now very interested in passing a stalled coronavirus relief bill.
• To the surprise of no one, Trump had only unkind words to say about the late civil rights icon John Lewis, and then groused about the Representative not showing up to his inauguration.
Trump keeps repeating that the US has so many cases because they test so many people, but he is unable to answer why the US has so many deaths— Stefan Simanowitz (@StefSimanowitz) August 4, 2020
TrUMP: “When I took over we didn’t even have a test”
SWAN: “Why would you have a test? The virus didn’t exist.” pic.twitter.com/6q1cUEu9K7
• After learning that his demented, gullible base would rather not vote at all than send in their ballots by mail, Trump is now telling people in Florida that they absolutely should vote by mail HAHAHAHAHAAHAHAAAAAAA!!
• Realizing that movie theaters won't be opening anytime soon, Disney is planning on releasing the new live action remake of Mulan on their streaming service Disney +... BUT! BUT! BUT! They're adding a rental fee of $29.99 on top of your monthly subscription rate. (You may now lose your goddamn mind.)
• In other movie news:
• Want to support the Mercury AND look like a million bucks? Buy our newest "RESIST" T-shirt created by local artist Sloane Leong that comes in black, white, yellow, and teal and is perfect for anyone who wants to protest in style!
• THE WEATHER REPORT: Expect another pleasantly warm sunny day tomorrow with a high of 85.
• And finally, if you're looking for a devastating anti-Trump ad that just won't stop... this one just won't stop.
Holy shit. 🤣pic.twitter.com/ypNGky5FPC— Ricky Davila (@TheRickyDavila) August 1, 2020