07-08-2020  2:44 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Oregon DOJ to Hold Listening Sessions on Institutional Racism; Leaders Wary

DOJ will hold 11 virtual listening sessions for underserved Oregonians.

Portland Black Community Frustrated as Violence Mars Protests

Black leaders condemn violence from small group of mostly-white activists as Rose City Justice suspends nightly marches

Protester Dies After Car Hits Two on Closed Freeway

Summer Taylor, 24, of Seattle died and Taylor and Diaz Love of Portland were injured. The driver, Dawit Kelete has been arrested

Police Union Contract Extended, Bargaining to Continue

Negotiations will resume in January 2021.

NEWS BRIEFS

The OHS Museum Reopens Saturday, July 11

The Oregon Historical Society museum will reopen with new hours and new safety protocols ...

Meyer Memorial Trust Announces New Trustee

Amy C. Tykeson of Bend, will oversee management of the 38-year-old Oregon-serving foundation. ...

African American Alliance for Home Ownership Announces New Board Member

AAAH has announced the appointment of Carl Anderson, M.D., a staff physician specializing in occupational medicine with Northwest...

Ploughshares Fund announces over $1 million in Grants to Stop Nuclear Threats

The global security foundation’s board of directors awards grants to 15 organizations working on nuclear weapons issues ...

Chip Miller Named Associate Artistic Director of Portland Center Stage

Miller originally joined the company in the spring of 2019, in the role of associate producer. ...

Police: million lost due to ongoing Portland protests

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Downtown businesses in Portland, Oregon, have sustained about million in damages and lost customers because of violent nightly protests that have wracked the city, authorities said Wednesday.At a police briefing, Deputy Chief Chris Davis said the intensity of the...

Coronavirus kills funding of 37 projects in Oregon

BEND, Ore. (AP) — A steep drop in lottery funds due to the COVID-19 crisis has killed the sale of 3 million in state bonds to pay for major projects in Oregon, the Bulletin newspaper of Bend reported Wednesday.The 37 projects authorized by the Legislature at the end of the 2019 session...

Iowa defensive back Jack Koerner hurt in jet ski accident

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa defensive back Jack Koerner sustained serious injuries when he and a passenger on a jet ski collided with a boat on the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri.According to a police report, Koerner and Cole Coffin were hurt at about 6:30 p.m. Friday when their watercraft...

Missouri football program pushes again for racial justice

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Ryan Walters had just arrived at the University of Missouri to coach safeties for the football program when a series of protests related to racial injustice led to the resignations of the system president and the chancellor of its flagship campus.The student-led movement...

OPINION

Recent Protests Show Need For More Government Collective Bargaining Transparency

Since taxpayers are ultimately responsible for funding government union contract agreements, they should be allowed to monitor the negotiation process ...

The Language of Vote Suppression

A specific kind of narrative framing is used to justify voter suppression methods and to cover up the racism that motivates their use. ...

Letter to the Community From Eckhart Tolle Foundation

The Eckhart Tolle Foundation is donating more than 250,000 dollars to organizations that are fighting racism ...

Editorial From the Publisher: Vote as Your Life Depends on It

The Republican-controlled Senate won’t pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, no matter how hard Oregon’s senators and others work to push for change. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Five takeaways from Facebook's civil rights audit

A two-year audit of Facebook’s civil rights record found that the company’s elevation of free expression — especially by politicians — above other values has hurt its progress on other matters like discrimination, elections interference and protecting vulnerable users....

Biden-Sanders task forces unveil joint goals for party unity

WASHINGTON (AP) — Political task forces Joe Biden formed with onetime rival Bernie Sanders to solidify support among the Democratic Party's progressive wing recommended Wednesday that the former vice president embrace proposals to combat climate change and institutional racism while...

Mississippi board votes 'no' on moving Confederate monument

OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Officials in a Mississippi county unanimously voted to keep a Confederate monument where it stands, saying moving the statue wouldn't fix racial tensions.In a 5-0 vote, the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors rejected a proposal to relocate the Confederate statue,...

ENTERTAINMENT

Network: Shepard Smith joins CNBC for weeknight news program

NEW YORK (AP) — Shepard Smith, who abruptly quit Fox News Channel last October amid the ascendancy of opinionated programming, will bring a nightly newscast to CNBC this fall.CNBC announced Wednesday that Smith will anchor a one-hour weeknight newscast at 7 p.m. Eastern, the time slot he...

Coppola and Henson companies get loans for winery, puppetry

LOS ANGELES (AP) — From a godfather of cinema to Kermit the Frog, the U.S. government’s small-business lending program sent money into unexpected corners of the entertainment industry. While legendary names like Francis Ford Coppola and Jim Henson hardly evoke the image of...

Review: Hanks lends steady, sober hand to taut naval drama

He’s Forrest Gump. He’s Mr. Rogers. He’s Woody.But with all the famous titles Tom Hanks has owned, few have fit as snugly and as smoothly as “captain” — whether it’s fending off Somali pirates in “Captain Phillips,” landing a plane on...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Network: Shepard Smith joins CNBC for weeknight news program

NEW YORK (AP) — Shepard Smith, who abruptly quit Fox News Channel last October amid the ascendancy of...

Justice Department plows ahead with execution plan next week

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department is plowing ahead with its plan to resume federal executions next...

Health official: Trump rally 'likely' source of virus surge

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — President Donald Trump's campaign rally in Tulsa that drew thousands of people in late...

Ivory Coast PM, presidential candidate Amadou Coulibaly dies

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast (AP) — Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, the presidential candidate of Ivory...

UK gets creative: Job bonus and eating out schemes announced

LONDON (AP) — The British government unveiled a raft of measures Wednesday it hopes will limit an...

Hong Kong inaugurates Beijing's national security office

HONG KONG (AP) — Beijing’s national security office was inaugurated in Hong Kong on Wednesday, just...

McMenamins
Dylan Lovan the Associated Press

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- When Stella Harville brought her black boyfriend to her family's all-white church in rural Kentucky, she thought nothing of it. She and Ticha Chikuni worshipped there whenever they were in town, and he even sang before the congregation during one service.

Then in August, a member of Gulnare Free Will Baptist Church told Harville's father that Chikuni couldn't sing there anymore. And last Sunday, in a moment that seems from another time, church members voted 9-6 to bar mixed-race couples from joining the congregation.

The policy has drawn a firestorm of criticism in just a few days and sent church leaders scrambling to overturn it, perhaps as early as Sunday. The executive secretary of the church's national organization said he has been inundated with angry phone calls, and had an inch-high stack of emails printed out on his desk.

"We are not a group of racist people," said Keith Burden of the National Association of Free Will Baptists. "We have been labeled that obviously because of the actions of nine people."

The resolution approved by the Gulnare church says it does not condone interracial marriage and "parties of such marriages will not be received as members, nor will they be used in worship services and other church functions, with the exception being funerals."

Voting on the resolution wasn't announced in church and ballots were cast after the service, attended by about 35 to 40 people.

The church member and former pastor who pushed for the vote, Melvin Thompson, wouldn't tell The Associated Press why he did it.

"I am not racist. I will tell you that. I am not prejudiced against any race of people, have never in my lifetime spoke evil" about a race, Thompson said earlier this week in a brief interview. "That's what this is being portrayed as, but it is not."

Thompson stepped down as pastor earlier this year for health reasons, according to Harville's dad, Dean Harville. He said it was Thompson who told him that Chikuni couldn't sing at the church, a small, one-story red brick building with few windows and a white steeple.

After giving interviews earlier this week, the church's current pastor, Stacy Stepp, and several other church members did not return phone calls Friday. One of the members said they were shocked. Stepp said he voted against the measure and would work to overturn it.

The national group distanced itself from the resolution in a statement Thursday, saying it "neither condemns nor disallows" interracial marriage.

It said the church was working to reverse its policy and added, "We encourage the church to follow through with this action."

Harville, who is now engaged to Chikuni, said earlier this week that she felt betrayed by the church.

"Whether they keep the vote or overturn it, it's going to be hard for me go back there," she told AP.

Gulnare is a small town in Pike County, in eastern Kentucky. The county celebrates its Appalachian heritage in the spring with the Hillbilly Days Festival in downtown Pikeville, the county seat, and the Apple Blossom Festival in Elkhorn City, according to a tourism website.

Harville is working on her master's degree in optical engineering at an Indiana college. She met Chikuni, who is from Zimbabwe, at Georgetown College in central Kentucky.

"It's like we were kind of blindsided," Harville said.

More than 40 years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court knocked down a Virginia statute barring whites from marrying nonwhites, overturning bans in 15 other states. But while interracial marriages have soared since then, many churches remain largely segregated.

Curtiss Paul DeYoung, a professor at Bethel College who has studied interracial churches, said church members opposed to a more diverse church usually just go somewhere else.

"Rarely today do you see it so blatantly come to a vote. Usually people just leave but they don't say much about it," DeYoung said. "I think this is still one of the last hurdles around race for a lot of folks in this country. It's just rarely stated this bluntly."

The Free Will Baptists trace their history to the 18th century. They emphasized the Arminian doctrine of free will, free grace, and free salvation, in contrast to most Baptists, who were Calvinists and believed Christ died only for those predestined to be saved.

There are some 4,200 churches worldwide. The National Association of Free Will Baptists organized in Nashville, Tenn., in 1935 and is now based in Antioch, Tenn.

The group said in its statement that the denomination has no official policy regarding interracial couples "because it has not been an issue."

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