02-19-2020  8:48 am   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Rep. Blumenauer Joined by Sens. Markey, Sanders, and Warren to Introduce Bill to Hold Big Oil Companies Accountable

"Amidst the growing climate emergency, closing this loophole is a small step we must take to hold Big Oil accountable and to protect our communities," said Blumenauer. 

Trump Appointees Weigh Plan to Build Pipeline in Oregon

If the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves the project, which lacks state permits, it would likely set up a court battle over state's rights

Oregon Lawmakers Ask U.S. Attorney to Investigate Whether Local Police Violated Black Man’s Civil Rights

U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer said this racial targeting of Michael Fesser "reflects the worst abuses of African-Americans in our nation’s modern history"

DA to Investigate West Linn Cops Handling of Wrongful Arrest

Former West Linn Police Chief Terry Timeus had his officers initiate an unwarranted, racially motivated surveillance and arrest of a Black Portland man as a favor to the chief’s fishing buddy

NEWS BRIEFS

Wednesday, February 19 Will Be Declared 'Rip City Day'

Ceremony at City Hall will honor the rich history of the organization ...

Seattle Pacific University Hosts Music Events

Seattle Pacific University invites the public to a series of free music events during the months of February and March ...

A Celebration of Portland’s Role in the Negro Leagues to be Held Thursday, Feb. 20

The community is invited for a celebration of Black History Month and the 100th anniversary of Negro League Baseball in America ...

Kresge Foundation Selects PCC To Participate in Its National Boost Initiative

The $495,000 grant awarded to PCC and Albina Head Start will help connect low-income residents and students to services and...

Attorney Jamila Taylor Announces Run for State House of Representatives in Washington

Taylor pledges to continue outgoing Rep. Pellicciotti’s commitment to open, accountable government in a statement released today ...

Seattle City Council OKs more tent cities, tiny houses

SEATTLE (AP) — The Seattle City Council has voted to allow the creation of up to 40 tent cities, tiny house villages, or parking lots where people living in their cars can camp — a sharp increase from the number the city currently allows.The Seattle Times reports the ordinance...

Oregon cop used badge to get sex; now he wants to be lawyer

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon State Bar has rejected the application of an ex-Springfield police officer to become a lawyer after its investigators found that he had used his position to exploit vulnerable women for sex and lied about it.The Board of Bar Examiners determined that Neil...

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

House impeachment manager from Texas endorses Joe Biden

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is looking ahead to the critical Super Tuesday primary slate with a new endorsement from a Texas congresswoman who served as an impeachment manager in the Senate trial of President Donald Trump. Rep. Sylvia Garcia, a Democrat from Houston, is the sixth...

Pompeo says South Africa land seizures would be 'disastrous'

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — America's top diplomat on Wednesday asserted that South Africa's plan to allow expropriation of private property without compensation would be “disastrous” for the country's economy and its people.Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made the comments in...

China cancels press credentials of 3 Wall Street Journal reporters over editorial headline deemed racist and slandering

BEIJING (AP) — China cancels press credentials of 3 Wall Street Journal reporters over editorial headline deemed racist and slandering....

ENTERTAINMENT

'Fresh Off the Boat' leaving indelible mark on TV landscape

Even before “Fresh Off the Boat” hit the airwaves on ABC in February 2015, the show was facing pressure that other new shows weren't. It was set to be the first network TV comedy with an all-Asian cast since Margaret Cho's “All-American Girl” premiered 20 years earlier....

Eugene Hernandez named director of New York Film Festival

NEW YORK (AP) — Eugene Hernandez will succeed Kent Jones as the director of the New York Film Festival, becoming only the fifth person to lead the esteemed Lincoln Center showcase for cinema in its 57-year history. Lesli Klainberg, executive director of Film at Lincoln Center, announced the...

Jury ends 1st day of deliberations in Weinstein's rape trial

NEW YORK (AP) — Jurors in Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial ended their first day of deliberations Tuesday with lots of questions and no verdict in the landmark #MeToo case that could put the once-powerful Hollywood producer behind bars for the rest of his life.The panel of seven men and...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

US judge dismisses Huawei suit over government contracts ban

NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge in Texas has dismissed Chinese tech giant Huawei's lawsuit challenging a...

Ex-Gov. Blagojevich returns to Chicago, maintains innocence

CHICAGO (AP) — Rod Blagojevich returned home to Chicago early Wednesday, shaking hands and signing...

Syria's Aleppo airport resumes flights amid fighting nearby

ALEPPO, Syria (AP) — A Syrian passenger jet landed in Aleppo on Wednesday from Damascus, marking the...

Devices found in missiles, Yemen drones link Iran to attacks

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A small instrument inside the drones that targeted the heart of Saudi...

Greece, US hold live-fire drill following military base deal

LITOCHORO, Greece (AP) — Army aviation forces from Greece and the United States took part in a live-fire...

Dutch farmers protest in The Hague against emissions policy

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Thousands of angry Dutch farmers converged on The Hague on Wednesday in the...

McMenamins
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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