02-27-2020  3:32 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

PHOTOS: Elizabeth Warren Rallies in Seattle

Washington state’s primary is Tuesday, March 10; voters should have received their ballots by Thursday, Feb. 27

Support for Black Reparations Grows in Congress

The Commission to Study and Develop Reparations Proposals for African-Americans Act now has 125 cosponsors

Shifting Demographics Drive GOP Nosedive on US West Coast

Political districts have flipped in population centers, from San Diego in the south to Seattle in the north

'A World of Hurt': 39 States to Investigate JUUL's Marketing

Oregon is one of five states leading a bipartisan coalition looking into JUUL’s targeting of youth vaping

NEWS BRIEFS

Washington’s March 10 Presidential Primary Ballots Mailed to Voters

Voters required to make party declaration for this election only ...

State and Federal Agencies Aid Sunken Tugboat in Columbia River

Divers plugged fuel vents this afternoon and the vessel is not actively leaking ...

Multnomah County Promotes Voter Education Project

Multnomah County is partnering with National Association of Secretary of States (NASS) to promote #TRUSTEDINFO2020 ...

New Travel Ban Takes Effect, National Groups Respond

The expansion of the Muslim ban targets more Black immigrants ...

Harris, Booker Applaud House For Announcing Vote on Anti-Lynching Legislation

After passing the House, the bill will head to the president’s desk to be signed into law ...

2 burned, 30 displaced in Beaverton apartment fire

BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) — Two people were burned and dozens were displaced in a fire at a Beaverton apartment building. People started calling 911 before 10 a.m. Thursday to report heavy fire in a building in the Lombard Plaza apartment complex, according to Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue...

Man accused in stabbings sent to hospital for evaluation

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A 20-year-old man accused of stabbing a mother and daughter in a Wells Fargo bank branch in December has been transferred to the Oregon State Hospital for treatment and an evaluation of his ability to help in his defense.At a Feb. 10 hearing, Washington County Circuit...

Former AD, All-American center Dick Tamburo dies at 90

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Dick Tamburo, an athletic director at three major schools and an All-American center at Michigan State, has died. He was 90.Michigan State announced that Tamburo died Monday.A native of New Kensington, Pennsylvania, Tamburo served as the athletic director at Texas...

OPINION

Black America is Facing a Housing Crisis

As the cost of housing soars the homeless population jumps 12 percent, the number of people renting grows and homeownership falls ...

Trump Expands Muslim Ban to Target Africans

Under the new ban on countries, four out of five people who will be excluded are Africans ...

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Top nominee Polanski to skip French Oscars after rape claim

PARIS (AP) — Filmmaker Roman Polanski is skipping the awards ceremony for France's equivalent of the Oscars — where his latest movie leads this year's nominations — because of protests prompted by a new rape accusation against him.Women's rights activists have called for a...

Nazi cautionary dramas wade into political, factual disputes

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Hollywood mustered its creative forces in the 1940s when Adolf Hitler's Nazi Germany sought to conquer the world, with Humphrey Bogart standing up to the fascist regime in “Casablanca” and director Ernst Lubitsch mocking it and its dictator in “To Be...

Judge resigns amid use of racial slur in text messages

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A Louisiana judge resigned Thursday after several people, including Gov. John Bel Edwards, called for her to step down for using racial slurs in angry text messages.State District Judge Jessie LeBlanc tendered her resignation effectively immediately in signed letters...

ENTERTAINMENT

Higdon opera for Philadelphia to have 3 different endings

Jennifer Higdon has been commissioned by Opera Philadelphia to compose "Woman with Eyes Closed," which will open the company's O20 Festival on Sept. 17 and in a novel twist will feature three different endings.Higdon, winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Music and a three-time Grammy Award winner,...

A rebel yell: Billy Idol stars in New York anti-idling ads

NEW YORK (AP) — Rocker Billy Idol is the face of an anti-idling campaign launched Thursday in New York City.“Billy never idles, so why should you?” the '80s MTV star growls in a public service announcement intended to shame New Yorkers into shutting the engine off. The...

Dan + Shay, Justin Bieber, Maren Morris nab top ACM noms

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Grammy-winning duo Dan + Shay lead the 2020 Academy of Country Music Awards with six nominations for Dan Smyers and five for Shay Mooney and helped pop star Justin Bieber earn his first-ever ACM noms. In the nominations announced Thursday, the powerhouse duo share...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Ben Affleck on the pain and catharsis of 'The Way Back'

NEW YORK (AP) — Of the many stories that have stuck with Ben Affleck from his Alcoholics Anonymous...

Biggest explosion seen in universe came from black hole

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Astronomers have discovered the biggest explosion seen in the universe,...

Plácido Domingo revises apology, as Spain drops more shows

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Opera star Placido Domingo amended his apology to the multiple women who have accused...

3,000-strong African force planned against Sahel extremism

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — African leaders have decided to work on deploying 3,000 troops to West...

Scars of violence haunt India's capital after deadly riots

NEW DELHI (AP) — India's hard-line Hindu nationalists watched anti-government protests centered in Muslim...

Virus response in Mideast tainted by political views of Iran

BEIRUT (AP) — In the Middle East, even virus outbreaks are political. The coronavirus has killed 26 people...

McMenamins
The Black Athlete by Omar Tyree

The revolutionary and iconic stance of the great Muhammad Ali rang in my mind this morning as I woke up and thought about writing a new sports column for The Black Athlete. With a bonanza weekend of American sports that includes the NFL Draft, The NBA Playoffs, The Kentucky Derby, the Yankees and Red Sox baseball game, and the Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao fight, all I could think about is downtown Baltimore burning down with reports of 100 Black American men killed by police in the past year, while we still have our first African-American president in office at the White House.

Excuse me for being political in a sports column, but athletes are people first. They come from families with mothers and fathers. They come from communities in cities and towns. They come from fanbases of loyal people who have supported them. But once they make it to the highest professional level of sports, where they voices, wallets and social/political impact becomes the greatest, they are then advised to leave politics alone and keep their personal views private, or else suffer the consequences of repulsion from those American citizens who would rather not hear it.

Typically, in America, the mainstream white community has been the main culprits of wildly supporting athletes, while rejecting where they come from, what they stand for, or what their families and communities are still having to deal with in their lives daily.

“Hey pal, don’t push that stuff on me. I have anything to do with all that. I’m only here to watch the game.”

Nevertheless, American sports leagues have been allowed to support cancer awareness and wear pink every year, support military veterans who return home to their families from active duty overseas, and a half dozen other mainstream campaigns. But only if the professional sports leagues—controlled by billionaire white men—allow it.
Surely, I understand that to bring certain injustices to light before, during and after each and every game would be a bit overkill and undesirable, even for me. But these athletes should at least be able to speak about it as they see fit in interviews, particularly when they are often forced to answer questions about the game. Allow them to also address a few questions about what’s going on their lives, in their families and in their communities, if they choose to do so.

But why are so many professional athletes punished for that? Is it to control the social/political impact that they would have? Is it fear of moving the status quo of America into spaces that it still refuses to discuss or transition from? Is it to continue the stereotype that athletes are brainless and physically gifted brutes who are better off seen than heard?

The sports world has now become grossly hypocritical. Do we not now witness these same sports league authorities coming out strongly against domestic violence, abuse of children, cheating through performance enhancing drugs, driving while under the influence, smoking marijuana, and many other societal infractions of its athletes? These stronger league stances and rules of discipline for professional athletes are mainly in play because buying public now demands it. Thousands and millions of supported will no longer accept such transgressions, and the leagues’ owners are forced to feel it in their bank accounts from negative public relations. However, no such fear happens from the desires and demands of economic freedom, justice, equality and certain protective rights of black people, who now make up the majority of professional football and basketball players.

So I watched a 20-minute interview on YouTube this morning of Muhammad Ali and “Why I Refuse To Go To Vietnam” on the Malcolm X channel and was blown away by how astutely this uneducated black man and boxer from poverty in Louisville, Kentucky, could speak about the obvious politics of a black people, who were being forced to fight a war for America abroad, while not being allowed to fight a war at home to for the safety, education, dreams, aspirations and hope of their people at home in America. You need to watch it too for an historical perspective and update on how America continues to avoid the elephant in the room, even in year 2015.

Muhammad Ali was willing to go to jail and give up everything for a message of defiance and justice for his people, and he surely suffered for it as he quickly became Public Enemy Number #1 of mainstream white America, simply for voicing his honest opinions that were all based on the facts of our country’s treatment to millions of black people, a people who Muhammad Ali—previously named Cassius Clay—happened to be an extremely popular and respected member.

And I will say more. Go online and watch the tape and be proud of a man who deserved our respect FOREVER. The brother is indeed a special man, not just for blacks, but for all people.

 

Omar Tyree is a New York Times bestselling author, an NAACP Image Award winner for Outstanding Fiction, and a professional journalist, who has published 27 books, including co-authoring Mayor For Life; The Incredible Story of Marion Barry Jr. View more of his career and work @ www.OmarTyree.com

 

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