05-24-2018  4:17 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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Attorney General Forms Hate Crime Task Force

The task force will study hate-motivated crimes and review existing legal protections for victims ...

Portland Art Museum Celebrates Art Museum Day with Free Admission on May 25

Portland Art Museum joins art museums across North America, with great works of art and public programs ...

June Key Delta Community Center Hosts May Week ’18 Health Fair May 26

Event includes vision, glucose screenings, medication disposal and car seat installation ...

Mississippi Avenue Giving Tuesday

On Tuesday, May 22, 10 percent of proceeds from participating Mississippi Ave. businesses will go to SEI ...

Amazon: Echo device sent conversation to family's contact

SEATTLE (AP) — An "unlikely" string of events prompted Amazon's Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Oregon, family's private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle, the company said Thursday.The woman told KIRO-TV that two weeks ago an...

Portland streetcar derails in crash; 1 injury

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A Portland streetcar derailed during an accident involving several vehicles.No major injuries have been reported, but police say one person was taken to a hospital.The crash happened early Thursday afternoon in the Central Eastside Industrial District.The streetcar's "B...

Suspect in 1986 Washington murder case pleads not guilty

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — A man arrested in the killing of a 13-year-old Tacoma, Washington girl over three decades ago has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.The News Tribune reports 60-year-old Robert Washburn pleaded not guilty Thursday in Tacoma, Washington, to murder with aggravated...

Amazon: Echo device sent conversation to family's contact

SEATTLE (AP) — An "unlikely" string of events prompted Amazon's Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Oregon, family's private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle, the company said Thursday.The woman told KIRO-TV that two weeks ago an...


Racism After Graduation May Just Be What's on the Menu

Dr. Julianne Malveaux says that for our young millennials, racism is inevitable ...

Prime Minister Netanyahu Shows Limits of Israel’s Democracy

Bill Fletcher, Jr. on racial politics in Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s uneven treatment of African immigrants ...

Golfing While Black Is Not a Crime

Grandview Golf Club asks five Black women to leave for golfing too slow ...

Discovering the Best of Black America in 2018

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis discusses the DTU Journalism Fellowship & Scholarship Program ...


Staley settles lawsuit against Missouri athletic director

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — South Carolina coach Dawn Staley has reached a ,000 settlement in her lawsuit against Missouri athletic director Jim Sterk.Missouri is paying the ,000. One half of the settlement will go to INNERSOLE, a nonprofit foundation co-founded by Staley. The other half will...

San Francisco police not charged in black man's 2015 killing

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco prosecutors said Thursday that they will not charge officers in two shooting deaths, including the killing of a black man that led to citywide protests three years ago and federally recommended police reforms.District Attorney George Gascon declined to...

Body camera video is latest setback for Milwaukee police

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Body camera video showing police using a stun gun on an NBA player over a parking violation is just the latest setback for efforts to improve relations between Milwaukee officers and the city's black population.The confrontation involving Sterling Brown of the Milwaukee...


Scenes cut from 'Show Dogs' over resemblance to sexual abuse

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two scenes are being cut from the family movie "Show Dogs" after complaints that they resemble real-life sexual abuse, the movie's distributor has announced.In the movie, a police dog goes undercover at a dog show to catch animal smugglers.In one scene, the dog is told to...

Tommy Chong reflects on pot's evolution as he turns 80

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Yeah man, Tommy Chong says he always knew he'd live to see the day marijuana legalization would be sweeping America.He knew when he and partner Cheech Marin pioneered stoner comedy 50 years ago, a time when taunting the establishment with constant reminders that they...

Paltrow: Brad Pitt threatened Harvey Weinstein

NEW YORK (AP) — Gwyneth Paltrow says ex-boyfriend Brad Pitt threatened producer Harvey Weinstein after an alleged incident of sexual misconduct.The 45-year-old actress told "The Howard Stern Show" on Wednesday she was "blindsided." Paltrow claimed she was 22 when Weinstein placed his hands...


MLB panel says baseballs getting extra lift, cause unknown

NEW YORK (AP) — Baseballs really have been getting extra lift since 2015, and it's not from the exaggerated...

Tommy Chong reflects on pot's evolution as he turns 80

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Yeah man, Tommy Chong says he always knew he'd live to see the day marijuana...

Bus driver charged in crash that killed student, teacher

A school bus driver with a history of driver's license suspensions caused a fatal crash on a New Jersey highway...

Israel defense chief plans 2,500 new West Bank settler homes

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's defense minister said Thursday he will seek approval next week to fast-track...

Cyclone Mekunu pounds Yemen island on its path to Oman

SALALAH, Oman (AP) — Cyclone Mekunu roared over the Yemeni island of Socotra in the Arabian Sea on its way...

Saudi Arabia releases 3 women as other activists still held

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Saudi authorities have released three prominent women's rights...

By Donovan M. Smith | The Skanner News

Two of the hottest acts in music today -- singers Janelle Monae and Jidenna -- lent their star power to a rally in Dawson Park Monday afternoon, calling attention to ongoing police brutality and violence across the country.

Though the two were greeted with cheers and applause upon stepping onto the famed gazebo, they let the crowd of about 300 know that their attendance was solely a show of solidarity with those working to stop violence across the country.

“We come here not as celebrities, not as artists, but as human beings,” Jidenna said to the crowd.

 “One of the things that we believe is that silence is our enemy and sound is our weapon,” Monae said. “I look at these beautiful babies this diverse crowd, we are all one. Let’s get rid of this race thing that we’re dealing with right now, we are human beings, let’s look out for each other.”

Monae then helped lead the crowd in singing a song she says she crafted specifically for “the people out there fighting in the streets” titled “Hell You Talmbout.” The song is a boisterous protest track fashioned in the vein of Negro spirituals, calling out the names of those who’ve died at the hands of law enforcement.

Teressa Raiford, a lead organizer from the anti-violence group Don’t Shoot PDX, helped bring  Monae and Jidenna, who are touring the country performing free shows, to Dawson Park.

Raiford said she was happy to see the community come out and support one another.

“I’m happy that they came out. I’m happy that Janelle wrote that song,” Raiford told The Skanner. “I’m happy that she dedicated it to every breath and every step that has been taken in honor of this movement, and I’m happy that she’s moving around the country with these free shows to help uplift our work because as they let us know, they know that we have it hard. So they’re saying, ‘We’ll make it cool for you, we’ll use our art to do that, that’s a tool. That’s Black power.”

Jesselle Hedman, a senior at Portland State University, was one of the many faces in the crowd on Monday. She said she’s been increasingly drawn to issues around police accountability in recent years.

“I’ve missed some of the police accountability events that we’ve had in the past, but I think right now is really the time to be against those things. I have a brother, I have a sister, I have family, I am those people that are going through those things and I can’t just sit and do nothing,” she said.

Though Monae invited law enforcement to attend the rally, none were visibly present.

The event also doubled as a drive to gather school supplies. Though unsure of how much was collected, Raiford said some attendees were allowed to take home materials at the park, while the rest were later dropped off at Columbia International and in Northeast Portland for a Rosemary Anderson High School’s backpack giveaway at Plaza Del Sol Wednesday.

As for Monae and Jidenna, they performed later that night at the Roseland Theater downtown to a packed crowd, with labelmates Wondaland, in what was their last show before wrapping their tour in Monae’s home base of Atlanta, Ga. at the end of the month.  Reportedly, Monae closed out her set that night by performing “Hell You Talmbout” for a second time that day.

The two will continue to attend similar rallies on their tour.

In an interview with New York radio-station Hot 97 earlier this month, Monae said community has been at the “forefront” of their movement.

“We looked at the music industry, and no disrespect to anybody working hard, getting their money, focusing on what they need to focus on, but we saw a lack of voices that were bringing something new, a different perspective,” Monae said.

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