08-12-2020  7:54 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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Prosecutor Won't Act on Low-level Portland Protest Arrests

At least several hundred people who have been arrested in the past few months will not face criminal prosecution.

Lawmakers Adjourn Special Session, Restrict Choke Holds

Sen. James Manning, D-Eugene, says choke holds are "a tool to take a life."

Seattle Police Chief to Resign Following Department Cuts

Carmen Best, the city’s first Black police chief, said in a letter to the department that her retirement will be effective Sept. 2.

Black Portlanders Struggle to be Heard Amid Protests

The Portland Committee on Community-Engaged Policing Steering Committee will meet Tuesday, August 11, 2020 from 5:30 –7pm


Oregon Housing and Community Services Awards $60,822,101 to Build and Preserve 802 Affordable Homes

Investments address the statewide shortage of affordable housing through the development and preservation of affordable rental homes. ...

Phase Two Re:Imagine Grant Deadline August 11

The fund focuses on supporting ten artists with grants of $5,000 as they reimagine their practices and pivot toward the...

U.S. Bank Announces $1 Million in Grants to Black-Led CDFIs; Additional Support for African American Alliance

A total of 15 CDFIs will receive grants ranging from $50,000 to $100,000 while the African American Alliance will receive...

Vote.org Holds #GoodTroublePledge Voter Registration Drive to Commemorate the 55th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act

2020 VRA anniversary observance to honor the memory of voting rights activist and late-Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) ...

White Democrats in Congress Falling Short on Reparations Bill

Democracy in Color releases “The White List” showing 79% of democratic House members haven’t cosigned HR 40 despite popular...

No prosecution for many arrested at Portland's protests

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — People arrested in Portland since late May on non-violent misdemeanor charges during the protests that have racked Oregon’s largest city for more than two months won't be prosecuted. The new policy announced Tuesday recognizes the outrage and frustration over a...

Multnomah Falls reopens to the public with coronavirus rules

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon’s tallest waterfall and one of the state’s most popular attractions has reopened to the public with new guidelines in place amid the coronavirus pandemic. Multnomah Falls opened in the Columbia River Gorge Tuesday, the U.S. Forest Service announced....

LSU adds Missouri, Vanderbilt in revamped SEC schedule

Defending Southeastern Conference and national champion LSU will host Missouri and visit Vanderbilt in its expanded Southeastern Conference schedule, while Alabama will visit Mizzou and host Kentucky in league play revised by the coronavirus pandemic. The league on Friday released two additional...

Missouri's Drinkwitz takes side in mask-or-no-mask debate

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz has been the head coach at Missouri for just over seven months. He has yet to lead the Tigers onto the football field, much less win a game, yet his role in the community already has forced him to take some important stands.First, it was supporting his new...


Historians Offer Context, Caution on Lessons 1918 Flu Pandemic Holds for COVID

Scholars find parallels of inequitable suffering between pandemic of 1918 and pandemic of 2020 ...

US Reps Adams and DeFazio Call on Postmaster General to Resign

The legislators say Trump appointee Louis DeJoy is sabotaging the US Postal Service and could harm the election ...

Da 5 Bloods and America Abroad

Even before I returned to the United States from my combat tour in Vietnam, I had decided that we were fighting an unjust war. ...

Falling Behind: COVID, Climate Change, and Chaos

Multiple Crises, Multiple Obstacles ...


Biden, Harris to make unusual campaign debut in virus era

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — Joe Biden is making his first appearance with newly chosen running mate Kamala Harris on Wednesday, betting that the California senator’s historic profile and confrontational style against President Donald Trump will boost Democrats’ efforts to oust the...

Black victims of U-Michigan doc seek equity in settlements

Dozens of Black former University of Michigan student-athletes who claim they were abused by a sports doctor who worked there for decades on Wednesday asked the university to treat them fairly as it settles hundreds of lawsuits expected to cost the school millions of dollars.They're demanding that...

Paris prosecutors investigate apparent anti-Semitic attack

PARIS (AP) — French police are investigating an apparent anti-Semitic attack on a 29-year-man in an apartment building in northeast Paris.A group that tracks anti-Semitic violence and hate speech in France, BNVCA, sought an investigation, denouncing it as the latest in a string of scattered...


The Weeknd, Roddy Ricch, Maluma, CNCO to perform at MTV VMAs

NEW YORK (AP) — Chart-topping Grammy winners The Weeknd and Roddy Ricch are set to perform at the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards this month.MTV announced Tuesday that Colombian singer Maluma and Latin boy band CNCO will also perform at the Aug. 30 event, which was originally to take place at...

Fox news, business cable channels to stream internationally

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Fox News and Fox Business channels are going international.A digital streaming service with the pair will launch in Mexico on Aug. 20, expanding to Spain, Germany and the United Kingdom on Sept. 17, Fox News Media said Tuesday.Fox News International will be available...

Trini Lopez, 1960s-era singer mentored by Sinatra, dies

RIO RANCHO, N.M. (AP) — Trini Lopez, a singer and guitarist who gained fame for his versions of “Lemon Tree” and “If I Had a Hammer” in the 1960s and took his talents to Hollywood, died Tuesday. He was 83.Filmmaker P. David Ebersole, who just finished shooting a...


College football in the spring: When? How much? Who plays?

Back in April, not long after the NCAA basketball tournament was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic, the...

Children in Beirut suffer from trauma after deadly blast

BEIRUT (AP) — When the huge explosion ripped through Beirut last week, it shattered the glass doors near...

Science and politics tied up in global race for a vaccine

WASHINGTON (AP) — No, Russia is not having a Sputnik moment.The announcement Tuesday by Russian President...

Outcry in Somalia as new bill would allow child marriage

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — An outcry is rising in Somalia as parliament considers a bill that would allow child...

AP PHOTOS: COVID makes birth more lonely for women in Peru

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Before she gave birth in Peru’s largest maternity hospital, María Alvarez...

Political novices drawn to anti-Netanyahu protests in Israel

JERUSALEM (AP) — In a summer of protests against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the accusations...

ODOT I-205 toll
Stephen Fong and Yuri Guan New America Media

Ed. Note: As any parent can tell you, there's no single blueprint for guaranteeing a child's academic success. Indeed, an entire industry has formed around providing parents with strategies for everything from how to make sure their child gets ahead in pre-school to getting into the college of their choice. But for recent high school grads Stephen Fong and Yuri Guan, the recipe for school success starts with some fairly basic ingredients.

The Not-so 'Tiger Mom' Approach to School Success

Stephen Fong

Through most of elementary school I believed myself to be truly stupid. Unaware then that I have dyslexia, all I knew, and all my parents could see, was that I hated anything and everything to do with reading or writing. But instead of trying to force better grades out of me, whether by hiring a tutor or by piling on extra homework, they took a more accommodating approach, which proved even more effective.

When I was in third grade my dad brought me to a live marital arts performance. He knew I was struggling in class and hoped to find other ways to instill confidence in me. I fell in love almost instantly and joined a nearby martial arts school soon after. The daily routine of kicks and punches, I began to think, weren't that unlike what I did in the classroom, only the mechanics of martial arts seemed to come a lot easier. Around the same time I also began to learn Chinese, which tipped my parents off to my dyslexia. Unlike English, where letters and words often became jumbled on the page, I always got the strokes right when I wrote in Chinese.

These were minor victories, but for me they helped reverse growing insecurities about my own ability to succeed in school.

My parents helped in other ways, too. I remember one night coming home late after working on a group project with classmates. I was starving; all I could think of was filling the nagging hole in my belly. As soon as I came through the door I was greeted by the crackling sound of food on the stove and the aroma of steaming rice in the cooker. Within minutes my mom had a table full of hot food laid out in front of me. In fact, our house maintained a regimented mealtime (with the exception of an occasional late night), which helped me structure the rest of my day. I always knew there'd be food waiting for me at home, and a ride to school in the morning.

Until high school, I assumed most students were ferried to and from school by their parents. Most of my friends were driven to school, so I never conceived of it as a luxury but simply part of the daily routine. Then came the day for my SAT. I saw a fellow student getting off the bus as I was being dropped off, and began to wonder about how much earlier than me she had to wake up to get to the test site on time. Not only that. While I sat in the relative comfort of my parents' car, she jostled with crowds of mostly unruly kids before sitting for the four-hour long test.

Both of my parents are college teachers, and so their schedules allowed for at least one of them to be there for me most days. I know not all parents have the same luxury. Still, more than anything else, my parents' attention to providing me with the basic comforts helped me stay focused and took the edge off of school, which in turn led to improved performance and better grades. Without that sense of security and comfort, I'm not sure I'd be where I am now, getting ready to leave for college.

Childhood Relics

Yuri Guan

My parents arrived in San Francisco from China when they were both in their mid-20s. Back there, my dad was an engineer and my mom a general doctor. However, when they moved here, it was hard to transfer the credentials they held in China, so they worked their way into the dry cleaning business instead, eventually opening up their own shop in the Outer Sunset neighborhood.

It was there that I spent every day after school and throughout the summer, scribbling away in the gray sheets of my workbooks. After a ten-hour workday, my mom would check my reading comprehension booklet using the answers in the back and make me recite old Chinese poems while my dad would go over my math problems.

There were times when frustrations boiled over. My parents' limited English meant things sometimes got lost in translation. I remember my mom would often grow exasperated trying repeatedly to get me to understand some passage of classical Chinese poetry, while my dad would throw his hands up when I didn't get some algebra problem. But as I grew older, my parents became less familiar with the material I was studying. As a result, I became increasingly independent and learned to check and re-check my own assignments. Still, they weren't done with me quite yet.

By my sophomore year in high school, my parents began attending free seminars on the college application process that were advertised in the local Chinese papers. They would fret about my SAT scores and lecture me about my grades. It seemed like college was all that mattered to them, and I began to feel stifled by their growing obsession. I wanted time to explore other parts of my life not tied to academics (which I did get, sometimes without their knowledge).

Other friends with immigrant parents tell me this is how they show their love. But my parents sole focus on school also made it hard for me to see them as people I could confide in. When I was in middle-school, I was diagnosed with scoliosis and had to wear a back brace twenty-three hours a day – which I wore hidden under a large t-shirt for about a year. While I became more and more insecure about my appearance, I kept my anxieties to myself. It wasn't that I didn't trust my parents; I had just grown used to associating them solely with my academic wellbeing. I never felt the need to talk with them about my personal life.

Today, even after graduating high school, the bookshelves in my room are still filled with the relics of my childhood education: K-8 level reading comprehension review booklets, workbooks on just about every math subject expected to be covered in elementary school, and Chinese textbooks with stories and vocabulary checks at the end. Whenever I see these, I'm reminded of all the things my parents taught me -- both directly and indirectly.

NAM intern Stephen Fong is a graduate of Galileo High School in San Francisco. He begins college this fall at the University of Arizona, where he plans to major in East Asian Studies. NAM intern Yuri Guan graduated from Lowell High School this past year and will enroll in UC San Diego in the fall.

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