Good Afternoon, News: NWSL Championship Game Yanked from Portland, Oregon Prison Workers Won't Get Vaccinated, and More Supply Chain Drama!

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

The National Womens Soccer League championship game will no longer be played at Providence Park this year.
The National Women's Soccer League championship game will no longer be played at Providence Park this year. courtesy of portland thorns fc

Good afternoon, Portland! Here's the latest on local news, national news, and a little bit of fun.

In local news:

• Portland housing advocate Jamila Dozier is running against City Commissioner Dan Ryan in the May 2022 primary. So, what's Dozier's background, why are they running, and what's their plan if elected? We cover all that and more in this Q&A with the candidate.

• On October 18, all Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) employees will need to be vaccinated against COVID-19, per a mandate from Governor Kate Brown. But with just a few more days to go, only half of those DOC employees are vaccinated—and 713 employees have received deadline extensions for religious reasons. In related news, 44 incarcerated Oregonians have died from COVID so far.

• Oh, shit, it's the consequences of Thorns management's actions:

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Q & A with Jamila Dozier, the Portland Housing Advocate Running Against Dan Ryan

Jamila Dozier, outside of Portland City Hall
Jamila Dozier, outside of Portland City Hall Jamila Dozier

In just over six months, Portlanders will be dropping ballots in the mail to vote on city elections. That May 17 election will see three seats up for grabs: Commissioner Position 2 (currently held by Commissioner Dan Ryan), Commissioner Position 3, (currently held by Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty) and City Auditor. City Auditor Mary Hull Caballero isn't running for re-election, but both Ryan and Hardesty are both campaigning to keep their seats for another term. Challengers have begun to slowly emerge in both council races, bringing both new and familiar names to the table. One of those new contenders: Jamila Dozier.

Dozier was the first person to submit her intent to run for Ryan's council seat with the city elections office. Two others have since joined the race: conservative videographer Brandon Farley and a relatively unknown candidate named Avraham Cox.

We spoke with Dozier about what attracted this political newcomer to join the race this week. (The following conversation has been edited for clarity).

Mercury: Tell me a little about yourself. Where are you from?
Dozier: I was born and raised in and around San Francisco, mostly in a coastal town called Pacifica. I went to Sonoma State University for undergrad. After that, I knew I wanted to move to Portland for grad school.

Why Portland?
In March 2012 I travelled here on a school trip over Spring Break, where we spent time working with community-based organizations addressing food and housing insecurity. I was introduced to Sisters of the Road, to Transition Projects, to Habitat for Humanity. And I just fell in love with the city. At face value, in 2012, it seemed like Portland was doing a much better job of caring for the unhoused than San Francisco. Seeing all the homeless services downtown co-existing with the rest of downtown businesses—in San Francisco, services were in segregated areas of the city. Areas you were told not to go to. Here, it felt different.

What did you focus on in graduate school?
I pursued a masters in higher education at Lewis & Clark. I wanted to identify meaningful ways to bridge the gap between K-12 and higher education, especially for students of color. I’m a first generation college student, and I wanted to show other kids of color that it was possible for them. While at Lewis & Clark, I did a lot of policy work around Title IX at the college—this was right after Betsy DeVos was made Secretary of Education and went after Title IX. That work led to being trained to be a Title IX investigator on campus. In 2017, I interned with the Oregon Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Task Force. It’s something I care deeply about.

What do you do for work now?
I’m the East Portland Policy Coordinator for the Portland Housing Bureau. I've been working on the city’s anti-displacement strategy and housing stabilization programs in East Portland.

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Savage Love: Mind the Gap

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Joe Newton

Thirty-year-old trans woman here, Dan, and I have a question about what is surely one of your favorite subjects: the “age gap discourse.”

About four years ago, I had a sexual experience that I go back and forth on whether to label as sexual assault. When I was 26 years old, I met a 19-year-old on a dating site and drove to a neighboring state to hook up with them. I’ll spare you the details, but when started doing things we had mutually agreed upon, one of them didn’t feel right in the moment, so I withdrew my consent. They respected my boundary for about fifteen minutes, then tried it again. I said no again, they refrained for another fifteen minutes, then tried it again. The cycle continued until I just got worn down. The night ended with me trying to fall asleep so I at least wouldn’t be conscious for what they were going to do. It didn’t work.

I’m friends with a lot of social-justice-focused millennials, and as such, discourse about age gaps in romantic and sexual relationships occasionally appear on my social media. The consensus, as I understand it, seems to be that there is a vast maturity gap between someone who is 19 and someone who is 26; therefore, someone in their mid-twenties has an affirmative duty to make sure nothing sexual happens with someone who is 19. It is also suggested that someone like me is a creep and a predator for even thinking about hooking up with a 19-year-old. It’s hard to not apply my own experience to the discourse, and boy, is it a mind fuck. Hearing people go on about how vulnerable teenagers are or how I occupied a position of power not only dredges up painful memories, but also makes me feel like a creep.

Did I do something wrong? I’m leaning towards no. I didn’t have any institutional power over the other person, it wasn’t an ongoing relationship, nor is it a pattern of behavior. (Like hell am I going to trust a 19-year-old again.) I also tried to follow your campsite rule. Instead of ghosting them, I sent them a message explaining why I wasn’t going to play with them again—the boundary violations—in the hope that they would do better in the future. I’m about 80% sure I have nothing to feel guilty about, but that other 20% just won’t shut up. Was I the bad guy here?

Am Getting Exasperated

Continue reading »

If I Ever Run for Governor, Please Don't Vote for Me

Nick Kristof
Nick Kristof Ilya S. Savenok / getty images

Nick Kristof, the longtime New York Times opinion columnist, is probably running for governor of Oregon. From an OPB report yesterday:

On Tuesday, Kristof officially formed a political action committee, a move that will allow him to raise money and hire staff ahead of a likely official announcement of his candidacy.

...Beyond his fame as a Times columnist and author, Kristof in recent years has moved back to the Yamhill, Oregon, farm on which he grew up, and he’s been working to reshape it into a vineyard and cider orchard.

If he does launch a campaign, it’ll be in the Democratic primary, taking place May 2022. Based on his rhetoric and other reporting on the possible run, Kristof seems to think he can walk a middle line that will appeal to a majority of Oregonians: He’s a liberal in the true 2021 sense of the word, a champion of half-measures and white male saviorism. He has experience as both a New Yorker and a rural Oregon farm-dweller. He’s an old cishet white guy with good intentions, and damn it, when has one of those ever steered anyone wrong?

Continue reading »

Good Morning, News: Near Record-Breaking Month for COVID Deaths, Opinionated White Guy Wants to be Gov, and Cap'n Kirk's Space Joyride

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

September COVID deaths nearly match all-time record.
September COVID deaths nearly match all-time record. BRANDON BELL / GETTY IMAGES

GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! We are young but getting old before our time. We'll leave the TV and the radio behind. Don't you wonder what we'll find, steppin' out tonight? LET'S GO TO PRESS.

IN LOCAL NEWS:

• The Oregon Health Authority reported 52 COVID-19 deaths yesterday, and while those fatalities happened earlier in September, it puts Oregon on track to match the deadliest virus month on record.

New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof has formed a political action committee to help him raise funds for what is expected to be a potential run for governor of Oregon. I know it's still too early for slogans, but how about: "Nicholas Kristof: Another Entitled White Guy Who Thinks His Opinions Matter."

• Democratic legislators Sen. Kayse Jama and Rep. Khanh Pham are putting together a very necessary workgroup to improve the way Oregon welcomes Afghan refugees in order to smooth the path for those arriving in the coming months—and those from other countries arriving in the future.

Continue reading »

Your Guide to 2021 Fall Festivities Around Portland: Pumpkin Patches, Corn Mazes, and More

Put on some comfy shoes and have an a-maize-ing time at this perfectly manicured labyrinth at The Pumpkin Patch.
Put on some comfy shoes and have an a-maize-ing time at this perfectly manicured labyrinth at The Pumpkin Patch.

It’s decorative gourd season, y’all—pumpkin spice is wafting through the air, and pumpkins are dotted all over farm fields. Celebrate the autumn harvest by meandering through a corn maze, eating some seasonal treats, and admiring nature’s changing colors. For more ideas on how to lean into the season, check out our complete guide to October events.

Bauman’s Harvest Festival
Find your way through winding mazes, watch some apples explode from being shot through an apple cannon, climb to the top of pumpkin hill, indulge in seasonal treats like Bauman's famous apple cider donuts and fresh-pressed cider, and more at their annual harvest festival.
Bauman’s Farm and Garden, Gervais (Tues-Sun, Sept 25-Oct 30)

Read on EverOut »

Good Afternoon, News: Brown Doesn't Budge on Vax Deadline, Housing and Health Crises Compound for Portland Seniors, and Voter Registration Ends Today

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

A person in their car reaching out the window to put their ballot in a ballot dropbox. They are looking at the camera and giving a thumbs up
Today is the last day to register to vote in time for the November 2, 2021 Special Election. Motoya Nakamura / Multnomah County

In local news:

• ALERT! Today is the last day to register to vote in time for the November 2, 2021 special election. Oregonians with a valid drivers license, driving permit, or ID can register online, or fill out a paper Oregon Voter Registration Card at a post office, county library, or the county elections building at SE Morrison and 11th.

• As the October 18th vaccination deadline for healthcare workers and emergency responders looms closer, at least eight counties in Oregon have already declared states of emergency in preparation for mass resignations. The predominantly Southern and Eastern Oregon county leaders have asked Governor Brown to remove or extend the vaccination mandate deadline, but Brown hasn’t budged—probably because we’re in this little thing called A PUBLIC HEALTH CRISIS.

Continue reading »

The Best Things To Do in Portland This Week: Oct 12-17, 2021

Head down to Powells City of Books on Saturday to snag their limited edition beer collab with Ex Novo.
Head down to Powell's City of Books on Saturday to snag their limited edition beer collab with Ex Novo.
This week is absolutely jam-packed with loads of noteworthy events (including a few show and exhibit openings), and luckily for you, we’ve rounded up all the best ones so you can spend less time deciding what to do and more time actually doing all the things! Check out everything from the Built Festival to the 15 Years of LAIKA exhibit to Boo Bomb VII, and for even more ideas, take a glance at our guide to fall festivities.

TUESDAY


MUSIC

100 Gecs - 10,000 Gecs Tour
The unhinged hyperpop of 100 gecs, one of the internet's favorite bands, has been praised as propelling the genre forward. They've grown exponentially, from their acclaimed 2019 debut 1000 gecs to the recently announced forthcoming album 10000 gecs.
Wonder Ballroom, Eliot

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New Savage Lovecast: Second Opinion with Alexander Cheves

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Ok, exactly how many people need to be involved for it to be called an orgy?

A woman has been mulling over something that happened 20 years ago between her and her brother-in-law. When she was 19, and her sister was away, her sister’s husband put on some porn, and asked her a bunch of wildly inappropriate sex questions. Then he asked her to keep their conversation secret. Unsurprisingly, they are now divorced. The caller never told her sister about this. Should she tell her now?

On the Magnum version of the show, Dan gets a Second Opinion from Alexander Cheves, a sex columnist for Out Magazine. They discuss hooking up with Trump voters, how desire for kink emerges early in life, and whether it Is “urbanist” to advise rural gay folks to move to cities.

And, a man has been with his wife for 20 years. She is done with sex, and he very much wants it. He likes to smoke pot in moderation. She insists that so long as he smokes pot, she will never have sex with him. Should he fully quit in hopes that she comes through on her end of the bargain?

Listen here:


Good Morning, News: Oregon Republicans Sue Over Redistricting, Kaiser Nurses Close to Striking, and Netflix Sides With Transphobes

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

Kaiser nurses working at a drive-thru COVID-19 test site in 2020.
Kaiser nurses working at a drive-thru COVID-19 test site in 2020. JUSTIN SULLIVAN / GETTY IMAGES

Good morning, Portland! And welcome to Good Morning News: It's what happened recently!

And here are the headlines.

• Kaiser Permanente nurses and health professionals in Oregon are getting ready to strike, as new contract negotiations have stalled on wage increases and workloads. In a vote, 96 percent of union members said they support the strike, meaning the union can now pull the trigger on it at any time.

• A group of former Oregon elected Republicans are suing to block the new congressional district map, calling it "partisan gerrymandering." In a similar 2001 lawsuit, the Oregon Supreme Court upheld the new map, so it may be unlikely that this lawsuit will change anything.

• It’s been nearly a year since Portlanders voted to approve a new oversight system for police who engage in misconduct. Yet, because the process of overhauling a police accountability program takes time, the city is still operating under the oversight system the ballot measure aims to undo—the Police Review Board. In this fascinating piece, our own Alex Zielinski breaks down why the Police Review Board is such an utter failure when it comes to disciplining cops.

Continue reading »

Good Afternoon, News: How Bad Cops Keep Getting Away With It, Celebrating Indigenous People, and Steve Bannon Snubs Subpoena

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

Case studies from the Police Review Board reveal why some cops keep getting away with bad behavior.
Case studies from the Police Review Board reveal why some cops keep getting away with bad behavior. Mathieu Lewis-Rolland

IN LOCAL NEWS:

• First of all, GOODBYE COLUMBUS... HELLO INDIGENOUS PEOPLES' DAY! Oregon can officially celebrate this holiday for the first time this year after the Oregon legislature overwhelmingly approved the switch back in May. Find out more about why recognizing Indigenous Peoples' Day is so very necessary.

• Ever wonder why Portland cops keep getting in trouble and yet they are rarely ever held accountable for their actions? There are a lot of reasons why, but one is because the cops have learned how to game the system when it comes to the Police Review Board (PRB) who investigates police malfeasance and issue disciplinary recommendations. Our Alex Zielinski explains how it works AND offers a few very juicy true stories of cops being bad and what happened when the case went before the PRB. Read it!

• An overwhelming majority of Kaiser Permanente nurses and workers in Oregon have voted in favor of authorizing a strike which will most likely happen—BUT they do have to give management 10 days before executing a walkout, which if it happens could lead to disastrous consequences due to the current pandemic.

Continue reading »

Get Ready to Scream—the Terrifyingly Fun SLAY Horror Film Fest Is Coming Soon!

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Get ready for a screaming good time... the terrifying fun of SLAY—our scary short film fest made by horror lovers like YOU—returns this October 22 through October 31, streaming online AND at the Clinton Street Theater!

Earlier this year, we asked filmmakers to send in their homemade short horror films (eight minutes or less) capturing whatever it is that scares them most—from classic ghost stories and slasher films to dystopian cults and political nightmares. AND BOY, DID YOU DELIVER! For the 2021 version of SLAY we have 18 frightening, freaky, and fun films that are guaranteed to scare the poop directly into your pants!

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE for the LIVE and in-person screenings at Clinton Street Theater on Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30, and if you'd rather stay home and watch it online, we have FIVE opportunities to do just that on October 22-31, and you can GET LIVESTREAM TICKETS HERE!

Want a sneaky peek at what you can expect from SLAY 2021? Then grab a spare pair of undies (just in case!) and read the descriptions and watch the new SLAY trailer below!


SLAY 2021 Trailer - PDX from Index Media on Vimeo.

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NewsCops

A Peek Inside Portland’s Ill-Fated Police Oversight System

Portland police officers in Northeast Portland on June 24, 2021, shortly after a police officer fatally shot a member of the public.
Portland police officers in Northeast Portland on June 24, 2021, shortly after a police officer fatally shot a member of the public. MATHIEU LEWIS-ROLLAND

It’s been nearly a year since Portlanders voted to approve a new oversight system for police who engage in misconduct. Yet, because the process of overhauling a police accountability program takes time, the city is still operating under the oversight system the ballot measure aims to undo—the Police Review Board (PRB).

That five-person board reviews the most serious allegations of police misconduct that come through the city’s Independent Police Review (IPR) office, the clearing house for all officer misconduct reports. Specifically, the PRB reviews cases that city investigators believe warrant an officer's suspension or termination, cases that involve discrimination, cases where an officer used deadly force on a member of the public, cases in which a person dies while in police custody, and other weighty allegations.

After reviewing these cases during its closed-door sessions, the PRB votes to uphold the discipline proposed by the investigator who initially reviewed the case, or to dismiss (or lessen) the penalties. While it's ultimately up to the chief of police to make the final decision on these cases, the chief often follows the PRB's recommendation. The five-person PRB is composed of three police bureau employees, one representative from IPR, and one community member approved by Portland City Council.

The outcomes of these decisions are made public several times a year. To better understand Portland's current oversight system, we're diving into the details of some of those cases.

Continue reading »

Good Morning, News: It's Indigenous Peoples' Day, Voodoo Doughnut Illegally Fired Workers, and Trick-or-Treating's Back!

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

A scene from a 2017 Indigenous Peoples Day rally in Los Angeles.
A scene from a 2017 Indigenous Peoples' Day rally in Los Angeles. David McNew / Getty Images

Good morning, Portland! Today is Indigenous Peoples' Day. Take a moment to hear what this day means to Native Americans, especially now that it has been formally recognized by a sitting US President. Here's how the day is being celebrated locally. Now, for the news:


- Voodoo Doughnut has been ordered to rehire employees who were fired after going on strike during the June heatwave, per a ruling by the National Labor Relations Board. The board determined Thursday that it was illegal for management to fire its employees for protesting their sweltering work environment.

- A momentous Oregon Supreme Court ruling has the potential to clear all current death sentences in the state, and possibly ending Oregon’s death penalty once and for all. Blair Stenvick breaks it down here.

- The Oregonian visited Salem Hospital, home to one of Oregon's busiest ICUs treating largely unvaccinated people with COVID-19. Take a sobering peek behind the curtain of life as a nurse treating patients "facing all-but-certain death." (And maybe share it with your anti-vax aunt, too).

- No one asked, but Portland's notorious cop union, the Portland Police Association, published a five-year plan for Portland police. Surprise: It calls for adding 800 more officer positions.

- Make time for this deep dive into the history of anti-fascism in Portland:

Continue reading »

Cheap & Easy Things To Do in Portland This Weekend: Oct 8-10, 2021

See another side of art at the first weekend of Portland Open Studios 2021 Tour.
See another side of art at the first weekend of Portland Open Studios' 2021 Tour.
Forgot to make plans this weekend? Fear not. As per usual, we've rounded up some choice picks to fill your free time that require little fuss. 2021 has been no less rough than 2020, but the Portland comedy scene is coming to the rescue and lightening the mood with outstanding free showcases like Dead Comics Society and Sorry Not Sorry. This weekend is also the first of two for the Portland Open Studios Tour, where you’ll have the unique opportunity to check out the inner sanctums of over 100 local artists. For more ideas, check out our guide to the best things to do this week or our guide to fall festivities.

FRIDAY


COMEDY

Dead Comics Society: The 2021-ening!
Chase Brockett hosts yet another fresh installment of Rogue Eastside's free stand-up showcase, pairing sets from an array of local and national comedians with delicious Rogue beer. Portland finest comics will take the mic: Jake Silberman (Willamette Week Funniest 5 winner), Wendy Weiss (Portland Mercury Undisputable Genius of Comedy), and Adam Pasi (Portland's Funniest Person 2019 per Helium Comedy Club).
Rogue Eastside Pub & Pilot Brewery, Buckman (free)

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