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Author and storyteller Baba Wague Diakite, left, is joined by Ghanaian master drummer Obo Addy, center, and his band, Okropong, at the May 25 Africa Culture Night and Benefit at Jackson Middle School.


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Civil liberties group's Oregon chapter joins a nationwide effort

The Oregon chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is joining the national organization in launching a nationwide initiative to end illegal government spying by the National Security Agency.

Responding to reports that phone companies are turning over private details about Americans' telephone calls to the National Security Agency, the ACLU of Oregon and ACLU affiliates in 19 other states have filed complaints with public utility commissions or sent letters to state attorneys general and other officials demanding investigations into whether local telecommunications companies allowed the National Security Agency to spy on their customers.

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In science fiction, robots take on diverse forms — such as R2D2 and C-3PO from Star Wars, Robby the Robot from "Forbidden Planet," or the cold steel behemoth, GORT, from The "Day the Earth Stood Still."

These images have be-come cultural icons, representing what most people think of when they hear the word "robot." But in the real world, robots also take on diverse forms, ranging from service-friendly vacuum cleaners and precision mechanical arms that help build cars, to playful robotic pets the whole family can enjoy.


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Party would deny citizenship to children born here of illegal parents

YAKIMA—The Washington state Repub-lican Party has adopted a platform that would revoke the constitutional provision granting automatic citizenship to the U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants.

Diane Tebelius, state GOP chair, said she believes the provision reflects the sentiment of Washington voters.


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Portland's citywide party nears its 100th year of summer tradition

Although many longtime Portland residents reach for their raincoats when the Rose Festival begins, they also know that the beginning of June marks a time to celebrate all the city has to offer.

For 99 years, the Rose Festival has swept through town in June to honor the prolific rose, appreciate the city's pretty young women and give residents and guests alike a good time.


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Flanked by City Commissioners Randy Leonard, left, and Dan Saltzman, Mayor Tom Potter announces the discovery that the FBI tried to place an informant inside Portland City Hall.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation allegedly attempted to recruit an informant inside City Hall, according to Mayor Tom Potter, who recently released an open letter to the community.

Federal authorities have since told the mayor that they know of no public corruption in Portland and are not conducting any investigation of the city.


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Bill brings oversight powers closer to their original intent, Licata says

Nick Licata

The Seattle City Council this week unanimously passed a bill to restore the Office of the Professional Accountability Review Board's citizen-review function, as intended by the council when it passed the original enacting legislation in 1999.


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Students at 17 Portland schools will have to adjust their schedules next fall when the Portland Public Schools changes opening and closing times.

Sarah Carlin Ames, spoke-sperson for the district, said the changes will bring three major benefits:

• Teachers and staff at neighboring schools will be better able to meet for planning and professional development if their schools have the same schedule.


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County commissioner works to move the mentally ill out of jail

Multnomah County Commissioner Lisa Naito is on a mission. It's not to win re-election or to award a fat contract.
It's to do something she believes will truly make a difference in the county and across the nation: Naito wants to remove mentally ill offenders from the criminal justice system and place them where they can be cared for as people — not punished as criminals.

"Our jails and prisons aren't mental health facilities," Naito said. "Obviously, there are people engaging in criminal activities who also have mental illnesses, but for nonviolent mentally ill people, jail is not the appropriate place to be."


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Howard Dean

Former presidential candidate and Democratic National Committee Chair Howard Dean will kick-off a weekend conference sponsored by the Democratic Party of Oregon when he speaks at 6:30 p.m. Friday, June 2, in the Eugene Hilton Hotel and Conference Center.

 


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