06-18-2024  7:04 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
  • (Photo by Nati Harnik/AP)

    Juneteenth is a Sacred American Holiday

    Today, when our history is threatened by erasure, our communities are being dismantled by systemic disinvestment, Juneteenth can serve as a rallying cry for communal healing and collective action. Read More
  • Dancer Prescylia Mae, of Houston, performs during a dedication ceremony for the massive mural

    Juneteenth Explained: What Is the Holiday, Why Was It Created and How Should It Be Celebrated?

    Many Americans are celebrating Juneteenth, marking the day in 1865 when the last enslaved people in the U.S. learned they were free. For generations, Black Americans have recognized the end of one of history’s darkest chapters with joy, in the form of parades, street festivals, musical performances or cookouts. There’s a push today for people to see beyond the revelry and learn about Juneteenth’s history. Read More
  • Adrian Perkins in his office in Chicago, Thursday, June 13, 2024. During his 2022 reelection campaign for mayor of Shreveport, La., a video, paid for by a rival political action committee, used artificial intelligence to superimpose Perkins’ face onto the body of an actor playing him. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

    AI is Making Controversial Changes to State and Local Elections

    Text, photos, videos and audio created using artificial intelligence are increasingly making their way into campaigns for state and local office. AI deepfakes that misrepresent candidates can do more damage in those races because campaigns have fewer staffers and less money. Yet some local candidates see AI as an equalizer against more powerful or well-financed candidates. They can use it for the practical aspects running a campaign, which frees them up Read More
  • Charles McMillan, a witness to George Floyd’s murder, speaks at the site where Floyd was killed on May 25, 2020, in Minneapolis. (Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

    Americans Used to Unite Over Tragic Events − and Now Are Divided by Them

    "Public tragedies have contributed to the increasing political polarization and the sectarian tone of political rhetoric today. One question I sought to answer in my book is why?" Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NORTHWEST NEWS

‘Feeling Our Age’: Oregon Artist Explores Aging Through Portraiture

64 women were painted and asked to reflect on lives well lived.

Off-Duty Guard Charged With Killing Seattle-Area Teen After Mistaking Toy for Gun, Authorities Say

Prosecutors charged 51-year-old Aaron Brown Myers on Monday in connection with the death of Hazrat Ali Rohani. Myers was also charged with assault after authorities say he held another teen at gunpoint. His attorney says Myers sincerely believed he was stopping a violent crime.

James Beard Finalists Include an East African Restaurant in Detroit and Seattle Pho Shops

The James Beards Awards are the culinary world's equivalent of the Oscars. For restaurants, even being named a finalist can bring wide recognition and boost business.

Ranked-Choice Voting Expert Grace Ramsey on What Portland Voters Can Expect in November

Ramsey has worked in several other states and cities to educate voters on new system of voting. 

NEWS BRIEFS

Word is Bond, Portland Art Museum, Portland Sneaker Week Announce Juneteenth Celebration Event, June 20

This Juneteenth program uses the shoe as a medium to amplify the creative voices and visions of Black men and their communities ...

Southeast Portland Natural Area Improvements Coming, Funded by Development Fees

Kelly Butte Natural Area trails, park amenities planned ...

Montavilla Pool to Reopen in July After Mandatory Maintenance

The pool will open later this summer due to an upgrade to the pool’s plumbing that required a more complex solution to achieve...

Coalition of 43 AGs Reach $700 Million Nationwide Settlement With Johnson and Johnson Over Deceptive Marketing; Oregon to Receive $15 Million

Today, Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum and 42 other attorneys general announced they have reached a 0 million nationwide...

Juneteenth 2024 Events in Portland and Seattle

View events celebrating Juneteenth in the Portland and Seattle area ...

US acknowledges Northwest dams have devastated the region's Native tribes

SEATTLE (AP) — The U.S. government on Tuesday acknowledged, for the first time, the harmful role it has played over the past century in building and operating dams in the Pacific Northwest — dams that devastated Native American tribes by inundating their villages and decimating salmon runs...

US government for the first time acknowledges how damming of Pacific Northwest rivers devastated region's Native tribes

SEATTLE (AP) — US government for the first time acknowledges how damming of Pacific Northwest rivers devastated region's Native tribes....

Kansas lawmakers approve a plan to lure the Chiefs from Missouri by helping to finance a new stadium

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas legislators approved a bipartisan plan Tuesday aimed at luring the Kansas City Chiefs away from Missouri by helping to finance a new stadium for the Super Bowl champions. The bill passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature and sent to Democratic Gov....

Kansas lawmakers to debate whether wooing the Chiefs with new stadium is worth the cost

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas legislators trying to lure the Kansas City Chiefs to their state argue that helping the Super Bowl champions build a new stadium could bring Kansas millions of dollars in income taxes from players and coaches, which are currently going to Missouri. Some...

OPINION

Juneteenth is a Sacred American Holiday

Today, when our history is threatened by erasure, our communities are being dismantled by systemic disinvestment, Juneteenth can serve as a rallying cry for communal healing and collective action. ...

Supreme Court Says 'Yes” to Consumer Protection, "No" to Payday Lenders 7-2 Decision Upholds CFPB’s Funding

A recent 7-2 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court gave consumers a long-sought victory that ended more than a decade of challenges over the constitutionality of the agency created to be the nation’s financial cop on the beat. ...

The Skanner News May 2024 Primary Endorsements

Read The Skanner News endorsements and vote today. Candidates for mayor and city council will appear on the November general election ballot. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Religious and cultural mentions removed from names of China's Xinjiang villages, rights groups say

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Authorities in China’s western Xinjiang region have been systematically replacing the names of villages inhabited by Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities to reflect the ruling Communist Party’s ideology, as part of an attack on their cultural identity, a report released...

The beginner's guide to celebrating Juneteenth

For more than one-and-a-half centuries, the Juneteenth holiday has been sacred to many Black communities. It marks the day in 1865 enslaved people in Galveston, Texas found out they had been freed — after the end of the Civil War, and two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s...

Colorado justices consider a pink and blue cake's meaning in a transgender discrimination case

From plain white cakes to rainbow-colored ones, the Colorado Supreme Court considered a variety of hypothetical cake-design scenarios Tuesday as it heard arguments in the case of a Christian baker who refused to make a pink cake with blue icing to celebrate a gender transition. The...

ENTERTAINMENT

Book Review: 'Margo’s Got Money Troubles’ tells a tale of modern love and success

The cover art and title of “Margo’s Got Money Troubles” don’t quite convey the wild ride readers who crack open this new fiction from Rufi Thorpe will take. There’s a reason Apple TV optioned it as a series starring Nicole Kidman and Elle Fanning before it was even published. This is a...

Music Review: Paul McCartney and Wings' oft bootlegged 1974 'One Hand Clapping' deserves applause

The sound of Paul McCartney and Wings' “One Hand Clapping” used to only be heard on bootlegs, or in snippets available on archival releases over the years. But it's new (mostly) complete official release deserves two-handed applause. As aging rockers empty their...

Book Review: 'Swole' explores what masculinity could be in a hyperconnected, TikTok-imaged world

Author Michael Brodeur takes the gym too seriously, and not seriously at all at the same time, in his book “Swole: The Making of Men and the Meaning of Muscles” in an effort to show the readers that the overly online world of hypermasculinity is an illusion and what a man can be is what you...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

This law is a lifeline for pregnant workers even as an abortion dispute complicates its enforcement

NEW YORK (AP) — Victoria Cornejo Barrera thought the legal helpline for workers sounded too good to be true and...

When violence and trauma visit American places, a complex question follows: Demolish, or press on?

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Last week in Parkland, Florida, wrecking equipment began demolishing the building at Marjory...

The shooter who killed 5 at a Colorado LGBTQ+ club pleads guilty to 50 federal hate crimes

DENVER (AP) — The shooter who killed five people and injured 19 others at an LGBTQ+ club that was a refuge in...

Deaths, drownings and destruction as heavy rains move through Central America. 3 killed in Guatemala

GUATEMALA CITY (AP) — Three men drowned in Guatemala when two of them tried to help another who had tried to...

Russia and North Korea have had a complicated relationship over the decades

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — President Vladimir Putin is in North Korea for a summit with its leader, Kim Jong Un,...

Ecuador stops waiving visas for Chinese nationals because of an increase in irregular migration

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — Ecuador on Tuesday announced the suspension of an agreement with China that had waived...

Ivana Kottasova, Frederik Pleitgen and Laura Smith-Spark CNN

MEISSEN, Germany (CNN) -- Rising rivers menaced swaths of Germany, the Czech Republic and Austria Tuesday, as floodwaters inundated historic cities and forced mass evacuations of low-lying areas.

The floods are feared to be the worst since 2002, when parts of Germany and the Czech Republic were devastated and communities in Austria, Slovakia, Russia and Romania were affected.

Seven deaths have been reported in the Czech Republic, while southern and eastern areas of Germany, including Bavaria and Saxony, are also badly impacted by recent heavy rains.

Images from Passau, a city in southern Bavaria where the Danube River is joined by two other rivers, show dirty brown water running through the streets of the historic old town after water levels passed a 500-year-old record.

Floodwaters in Bavaria are now receding but the crest on the Danube continues east into Austria and could threaten cities such as Vienna, in Austria, and Bratislava, in Slovakia, said CNN meteorologist Brandon Miller.

Large parts of Meissen, a town built on the banks of the Elbe River in Saxony, were also inundated after flood defenses were breached overnight Monday to Tuesday.

Those with homes and businesses were moving valuables and trying to sandbag their properties to protect them from the rising waters as the town's evacuation was ordered.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited towns in the region Tuesday and promised 100 million euros ($130 million) in emergency aid for affected areas.

The German military, government agencies and local authorities are helping with efforts to evacuate residents and protect properties.

The heaviest rain fell over Bavaria, Austria, Switzerland and the western Czech Republic from Saturday through Monday, with total rainfall over those days well over 3 inches for many locations, said Miller.

Salzburg in Austria recorded its entire monthly average of rainfall (155 millimeters, or 6.1 inches) in only the first two days of the month, he said.

The high waters also will have an impact on businesses beyond the communities directly affected by flooding.

The region's rivers are important in the transportation of freight and people, providing thousands of kilometers of navigable channels, as well as supporting agriculture, power generation and tourism.

Emily Russ, an American living in Vienna, told CNN iReport that a number of Danube cruise ships appeared to be being held in the city until water levels subside. She saw 15 on Tuesday where normally there would be one or two, she said.

Deaths reported in Czech Republic

Water levels have peaked in the Czech capital, Prague, but places downstream in the Czech Republic and along the Elbe River in Germany are still at risk.

A state of emergency is in place in most of Bohemia, the western part of the country, said Nicole Zaoralova, a spokeswoman for the Czech Fire Department.

Seven people have died as a result of the latest flooding, she said. Among the victims, two people died in a house collapse, one woman died when she was hit by a falling tree and another person was electrocuted.

Most of northern Bohemia, around the Vltava and Labe rivers, remains at risk of flooding, she said.

"We have evacuated 10,000 people so far," said Zaoralova.

In Usti nad Labem, in northern Bohemia, many households are without electricity. Melnik, 40 kilometers (25 miles) north of Prague, was being evacuated Tuesday morning.

The Berounka River, which flows into the Vltava, peaked overnight, prompting officials to raise anti-flood barriers in Prague to a level intended to cope with "100-year" floods.

So far, however, the Vltava River has not reached the level of the devastating floods of 11 years ago, Zaoralova said.

Transportation is severely disrupted in the capital, Prague, as well as other parts of Bohemia, she said. But while several metro stations in Prague have been closed, the subway system has not been flooded as it was in 2002, she said, thanks to a flood barrier system put in place since then.

"We do not expect the situation in Prague to become worse," she said.

Rainfall in Prague has already totaled more than 102 millimeters in June, more than the city's monthly average of 73 millimeters, Miller said.

Zoo animals moved to safety

Staff at the Prague Zoo also swung into action as the risk of flooding became apparent.

Zoo director Miroslav Bobek said the animals had been moved from the entire lower part of the zoo, which lies by the Vltava River, to other enclosures on higher ground.

"Hundreds of animals were evacuated, including large cats, tapirs, the whole monkey pavilion and the gorillas," he said in a statement.

"The gorillas' pavilion includes a special 'flood tower' that has been built specifically for moments like this, because the pavilion is situated directly by the River Vltava."

Most of the gorillas were lured to the safety of the tower using food, but the oldest male had to be tranquilized and carried up there after he refused to move, he said.

Two small birds drowned in one exhibit but the other animals were saved, he said.

"We are now working with other zoos in the Czech Republic to see where we can place animals that won't be able to return to their pavilions soon," Bobek added.

The zoo is expected to reopen Wednesday. The flood damage is currently estimated to cost 160 million Czech Koruna ($8.1 million.)

The zoo was hit badly during the 2002 floods, when several animals, including an elephant, died. Since then, anti-flood barriers have been built.

Volunteers fill sand bags

Prague resident Katerina Netikova has spent the past two days helping volunteer efforts to stave off the worst of the flooding, coordinated by authorities and local people using social media.

On Sunday, she headed to the suburban town of Radotin, on the Berounka River, where residents directed the efforts.

"They knew exactly what is needed, where people should go and what should they do. They had the experience from previous flooding (in 2002). They were securing the town, putting barriers where needed," Netikova told CNN.

On Monday, she spent the night working at a fire station in central Prague, near the worst affected areas of the Holesovice neighborhood, helping to make flood barriers -- heavy-duty tube-shaped sacks filled with sand.

"It's hard work, because the sand is wet and gets really heavy," Netikova said. "People were rotating the whole night -- students from nearby university halls, Scouts, local people and more volunteers sent in by the town.

"The firefighters just told them what to do, and then the volunteers organized everything among themselves."

CNN's Frederik Pleitgen reported from Meissen and Ivana Kottasova reported from London, where Laura Smith-Spark reported and wrote. CNN's Stephanie Halasz and Sarah Brown also contributed to this report.

 

The Skanner Foundation's 38th Annual MLK Breakfast