01-22-2022  6:59 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Report: Oregon Has Too Few Public Defenders

Oregon has only roughly one-third of the public defense attorneys it needs to provide reasonably effective assistance to low-income defendants

Blumenauer Boosts Efforts to Put Three Black History Landmarks on National List

Congressman makes case for Mt. Olivet Baptist Church, Dean’s Beauty Salon and Barber Shop, and the Golden West Hotel’s importance to city history and heritage.

Lawsuit Says New Majority Latino District in WA a 'Facade'

A Latino civil rights organization and others filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday that says new political maps in Washington state approved by a bipartisan redistricting panel intentionally dilute Hispanic voters' influence.

Washington Students' Test Scores Drop Significantly

Reports show that between 2019 and 2021, the overall percentage of students who met state standards on the math portion of the exam fell by 20 percentage points.

NEWS BRIEFS

Five Schools Return to In-person Instruction on Jan. 24

Alliance, Faubion, Franklin, Ockley Green, and Roosevelt return to in-person instruction; George, Harriet Tubman and Kellogg...

Portland Winter Light Festival Begins in Two Weeks, Illuminating City for Seventh Time

Free, all-ages, outdoor activity returns with new opportunities for outdoor art experiences all across Portland ...

PassinArt Introduces ‘Play Reading Mondays’

The Spanish Jade and The Learning Curve, both directed by William Earl Ray premiere in February ...

Revamped TriMet Website Makes Planning Trips Easier With Map-Based Tools

Riders can now track real-time locations of buses and trains on their smartphone ...

PHOTOS: Founder of The American History Traveling Museum: The Unspoken Truths Honored

Delbert Richardson's Alpha Phi Alpha, Alpha XI Chapter fraternity brothers presented him a plaque that reads “Your commitment to...

Police: Lacey cops shoot, kill man who fired at officers

LACEY, Wash. (AP) — Lacey police shot and killed a man Thursday night who fired at officers, presumably hitting one in their bulletproof vest, authorities said. Police responded to a home around 8:30 p.m. after a woman called saying she had been attacked and had left the residence...

Peak yet to come, as Oregon sets daily COVID case record

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon health officials predict the number of COVID-19 cases will reach its peak within the next week amid a boom caused by the omicron surge. And authorities believe in early February coronavirus-related hospitalizations will likely surpass previous surge’s...

UNLV promotes interim AD Harper to full-time job

LAS VEGAS (AP) — UNLV has promoted interim athletic director Erick Harper to serve in the job full time. Harper's hiring, announced on Monday, was effective Jan. 1. He had served as interim athletic director since Desiree Reed-Francois left UNLV for Missouri in August. ...

Army stuns Missouri in Armed Forces Bowl on last-second FG

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Cole Talley kicked a 41-yard field goal as time expired and Army rallied to beat Missouri 24-22 in the Armed Forces Bowl on Wednesday night. After the Tigers took a 22-21 lead on a touchdown with 1:11 to play, third-string quarterback Jabari Laws led Army...

OPINION

OP-ED: A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand

January 6th, Voting Rights and the Tyranny Threatening America ...

Support Nikole Hannah-Jones and The 1619 Project

This important and ambitious project pulled back the curtain of euphemistic rhetoric composing American historiography that points only to the good in our history and sweeps under the rug the evil deeds perpetrated against people of color ...

In 2021, Organized Labor is Again Flexing its Muscles

We have seen dramatic change in the makeup of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) under President Biden. ...

Study Reveals Racial Pay Gap for Social Media Influencers

The racial pay gap has long presented issues for African Americans in Corporate America and other industries. It’s now filtered to social media. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Jewish leaders urge worship attendance after hostage siege

On the eve of her 100th birthday Saturday, Ruth Salton told her daughter she was going one way or another to Friday night Shabbat services at Congregation Beth Israel, just days after a gunman voicing antisemitic conspiracy theories held four worshippers hostage for 10 hours at the Fort Worth-area...

McConnell responds to uproar over comment about Black voters

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell pushed back Friday against the uproar over a comment he made about African American voters, calling the criticism directed his way “outrageous.” McConnell had been accused of racism for saying that “African...

Abuse victims see inequity in payouts at 2 Michigan schools

Two former University of Michigan football stars who stand to receive as much as 0,000 each through the school's sexual abuse settlement with more than 1,000 students say the per-victim payouts should be much higher, pointing to a similar case at rival Michigan State. Dwight Hicks...

ENTERTAINMENT

Eva Longoria Bastón's doc looks at Chávez, De La Hoya fight

Boxing legend Oscar De La Hoya wanted to make a documentary about his 1996 fight against Julio César Chávez. It was coming up on 25 years since the “Ultimate Glory” showdown and he figured the time was right to look back. So he asked Eva Longoria Bastón, his friend of 20 years, if she’d be...

Review: Penny and Sparrow push past Americana in 'Olly Olly'

“Olly Olly,” Penny and Sparrow (I Love You / Thirty Tigers) In the first few unassuming bars of Penny and Sparrow’s new album, “Olly Olly,” it is not immediately apparent that this collection of songs signifies a shift for duo Andy Baxter and Kyle Jahnke. ...

'SNL' comics Jost, Davidson buy Staten Island Ferry boat

NEW YORK (AP) — “Saturday Night Live” comics Colin Jost and Pete Davidson have purchased a decommissioned Staten Island Ferry boat for 0,100 with plans to turn it into New York's hottest club. Jost and Davidson teamed up with comedy club owner Paul Italia on Wednesday's...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Thich Nhat Hanh, influential Zen Buddhist monk, dies at 95

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Thich Nhat Hanh, the revered Zen Buddhist monk who helped spread the practice of...

AP Week in Pictures: Global

JAN. 15 - 21, 2022 From people braving the icy lake waters in Russia for Epiphany, to a camel...

First flights leave Chinese city Xi'an as travel curbs ease

BEIJING (AP) — The first commercial airline flights in one month took off Saturday from Xi’an in western China...

Russia hits all-time high of new infections, blames omicron

MOSCOW (AP) — Daily new coronavirus infections in Russia reached an all-time high Friday and authorities blamed...

Burkina Faso forces fire tear gas at anti-govt protests

OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — Security forces fired tear gas at protesters barricading the streets and...

Latin America, Asia latest to get hit with omicron surge

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (AP) — In Costa Rica, officials are encouraging those infected with the coronavirus to skip...

Shelia Byrd the Associated Press

Emmett Till



For years, the auburn-haired white man has educated students about activists in their own state who led peaceful demonstrations, and the wrath of segregationists who channeled violence to repress social change.

Soon, civil rights lessons be will required for students from kindergarten to 12th grade all across Mississippi.

A civil rights/human rights curriculum becomes mandatory in all public schools for the 2011-2012 school year, five years after Gov. Haley Barbour signed the requirement into law.

Civil rights is typically a part of social studies programs in the nation's public schools. State officials believe Mississippi is the first state to require civil rights studies throughout all grades in its public school systems. Mississippi education officials say the change took some time to implement because they waited to include it in the revision of the social studies framework that was scheduled for 2011.

Barbour said he sees the value in the new curriculum.

``To not know history is to repeat it. And to learn the good things about Mississippi and America and the bad things about Mississippi and America is important for every Mississippian,'' Barbour said when asked about the curriculum during an interview with The Associated Press in December.

Barbour's comments earlier this month came just days before he stumbled into a controversy stemming from his own recollection of civil rights history. In a profile in the Weekly Standard magazine, Barbour made favorable comments about the White Citizens Council in his hometown, calling it an anti-Ku Klux Klan group.

Several liberal bloggers said Barbour left an inaccurate impression of Mississippi's local Citizens Councils, which sought to thwart integration in many areas.

Barbour has since backtracked, saying he was not trying to downplay the pain that many endured during the South's segregation era.

Paola, who teaches at predominantly-black Hattiesburg High School, is among those who believe civil rights lessons may have been given short-shrift for decades in a state where 50 percent of public school students are black and 46 percent are white.

``Certain issues are still taboo,'' said Paola, 38. ``It depends on your demographics. You teach to them, I suppose.''

To ensure civil rights are taught in the schools, the state has made the subject part of an assessment test students must pass for graduation.

Perry Overstreet, 17, said studying civil rights in Paola's class had an impact on him.

Overstreet said he recently visited Glendora, the Delta town where black 14-year-old Emmett Till was taken by two white men in 1955 and his body dumped in the Tallahatchie River.

Because he had learned about Till, Overstreet said he was able to seek out landmarks associated with the case that sparked outrage and fueled the movement.

``It really opened my eyes to civil rights,'' said Overstreet. ``Mississippi has come a long way from back then.''

Paola helped write the new curriculum, which had support from the Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation at the University of Mississippi. Paola believes the change is needed because ``every year the movement itself loses momentum.''

``What I find in this level of class, they know who the people are, but they don't understand the story. They're old enough to see racism on the street. They get angry. I love when they get angry. It really pushes the nonviolent discussion,'' Paola said.

Derrick Johnson, president of the Mississippi NAACP, said the curriculum will help students better understand current political issues.

``In many cases, what we see today concerning the treatment of undocumented workers is very reminiscent of the treatment of African Americans during and before the Civil Rights Movement,'' Johnson said.

Not everyone is pleased with the new civil rights emphasis.

Rep. John Moore, R-Brandon, has filed a bill to repeal the law nearly every year since 2006. Moore, who lives in a suburb of Jackson, said he wants to know who will write the textbooks and craft the materials students will be taught.

``I want schools to be teaching my grandchildren to read, write a complete sentence and do math,'' Moore said. ``I just want to make sure it's teaching the truth and facts and not being accusatory of one group of people or the other. I don't want it to be somebody's philosophical idea of what civil rights are.''

The state Department of Education hasn't found another state with framework that incorporates civil rights studies in grades K-12, said Chauncey Spears, who works in the Mississippi agency's curriculum and instruction office.

Spears said school districts can tailor their textbook orders to support what will be taught, and some resources could be donated. The course work might also include visits to historic sites, and veteran activists will be asked to speak with classes.

``In kindergarten, you won't talk about community organizing, but you'll talk about issues of relationship or respect and then it progresses from that,'' Spears said.

In DeSoto County, an affluent school district not far from Memphis, Tenn., school officials say they're eager to begin.

``With our proximity to Memphis and access to resources such as the Civil Rights Museum, our students can not only learn about an important era in our nation's history, but they can also learn a great deal about the history of this region,'' said Jennifer Weeks, the district's associate superintendent of curriculum.

The Skanner Foundation's Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast

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