06-21-2018  1:12 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

ICE office in Portland closed another day

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement office in Portland was closed again Thursday because of a demonstration against Trump administration immigration policies.Agency spokeswoman Carissa Cutrell said people who had appointments scheduled at the office will be...

Washington, other states plan to sue over family separations

SEATAC, Wash. (AP) — Washington and more than a half-dozen other states said Thursday that they plan to sue the Trump administration over a policy of separating immigrant families illegally entering the United States.Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson made the announcement Thursday...

Washington, other states plan to sue over family separations

SEATAC, Wash. (AP) — Washington and more than a half-dozen other states said Thursday that they plan to sue the Trump administration over a policy of separating immigrant families illegally entering the United States.Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson made the announcement Thursday...

Walla Walla podiatrist charged with unprofessional conduct

WALLA WALLA, Wash. (AP) — A Walla Walla podiatrist has been charged with unprofessional conduct for allegedly failing to meet the standard of care in treating two patients who developed infections which later required amputations.The Union-Bulletin reported Thursday that Washington state's...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Governor orders probe of abuse claims by immigrant children

WASHINGTON (AP) — Virginia's governor ordered state officials Thursday to investigate abuse claims by children at an immigration detention facility who said they were beaten while handcuffed and locked up for long periods in solitary confinement, left nude and shivering in concrete...

Abloh's historic debut at Vuitton is a big draw in Paris

PARIS (AP) — The debut Louis Vuitton collection by Virgil Abloh, the first African-American to head a major European fashion house, drew stars of all stripes to Paris for his rainbow-themed menswear show.Kanye West was there with his wife, Kim Kardashian West, who had returned to Paris for...

Park Service gives initial OK to 'Unite the Right' rally

WASHINGTON (AP) — An organizer of last year's deadly white supremacist rally in Virginia has been granted initial approval to host another rally in August, this time in the heart of the nation's capital.The National Park Service says it has approved an application for a "Unite the Right"...

ENTERTAINMENT

Q&A: Sam Smith on touring, therapy, smoking and lip syncing

NEW YORK (AP) — Sam Smith knows his music is melancholy and emotional, but he's hoping his live shows will be uplifting and feel "like a fistful of love," as he put it.The singer, known for down-tempo hits like "Stay With Me" and "Too Good at Goodbyes," is launching "The Thrill of It All...

AP PHOTOS: Toasts, kisses and laughs at Clooney AFI gala

LOS ANGELES (AP) — George Clooney, this is your life.The American Film Institute hosted a star-studded gala earlier this month to honor the Oscar-winner's achievements as an actor, director and activist. The evening kicked off with a video message from former President Barack Obama, and...

Mike Colter brings the pain as the indestructible Luke Cage

ATLANTA (AP) — "Black Panther" broke box office records, but "Luke Cage" once crashed Netflix.The streaming service suffered a massive outage for more than two hours in 2016, one day after the premiere of "Luke Cage," a drama-action series starring Mike Colter who plays the show's superhero...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Dig it: Archaeologists scour Woodstock '69 concert field

BETHEL, N.Y. (AP) — Archaeologists scouring the grassy hillside famously trampled during the 1969 Woodstock...

Canada's legalization to offer pot by mail, better banking

Mail-order weed? You betcha!With nationwide marijuana legalization in Canada on the horizon, the industry is...

Koko the gorilla, who learned sign language, dies at 46

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Koko the gorilla, whose remarkable sign-language ability and motherly attachment to...

Cuba slightly loosens controls on state media

HAVANA (AP) — Minutes after a plane carrying 113 people crashed on takeoff from Havana airport, Cuban state...

Pope, in Geneva, says Christians must work together on peace

GENEVA (AP) — Pope Francis journeyed Thursday to the well-heeled city of Geneva to encourage all...

South Sudan's armed opposition rejects 'imposition' of peace

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — South Sudan's armed opposition on Thursday rejected any "imposition" of a...

The Rev. Bernice Powell Jackson

Last week a young man whom I met in a church in Florida several years ago came to mind. He had his own small business and he had joined the reserves to earn extra cash to support his family as his business grew. He had just been called up for active duty when I talked with him. He was prepared to fulfill his obligations, but he knew that his fledgling business could not survive his long period of absence, and his family would be forced to survive on his military earnings and those of his wife.

That soldier's story has been replicated thousands of times in thousands of communities across the nation over the past three years. When the nation recently passed the milestone of 2,000 American soldiers killed in Iraq, it was a sobering reminder of the ultimate sacrifices made by young men and women at the behest of their commander-in-chief.

That number is small compared to the losses of Vietnam, Korea or either of the world wars. Yet it is huge to each and every family and each and every community from which these service men and women come.

In this war, reservists and National Guard members who have been called into active duty are paying a high price, with a quarter of the deaths coming from these two categories. Many of them were well-known and valued in their communities — including police officers and fire fighters, teachers and farmers. Many of these soldiers and reservists are now on their second tour of duty in Iraq.

The New York Times recently ran an article telling the story of a young father who returned home for the birth of his child, only to return to Iraq for his third tour of duty — where he was killed. At least one estimate predicted that all troops will have completed three tours of duty by next spring. Will we then require them to return to Iraq for a fourth tour of duty? If not, where will we get more troops?

What happens to those National Guard and reservists who have been kept in active duty under Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's stop loss provision, even though they have fulfilled their contracts and more? What happens to those businesses, those farms, those communities that have done without those called up to active duty for three years now?

This Veterans Day will be a sobering one, not only for the families that have lost loved ones, but also for those 15,000 families of soldiers injured in the war — soldiers struggling with lost limbs, with burns, those who have been blinded or left paralyzed by the war.

Americans continue to support our troops in many ways. But more and more Americans are coming to the conclusion that we are paying too high a price for a war for which the American people have been given no truthful, legitimate reason.

More and more Americans are disturbed that there is no exit strategy being discussed, let alone shared. More and more Americans are coming to the conclusion that the war in Iraq has only nurtured a new breed of terrorists who are killing Iraqi civilians and American soldiers every day.

We owe it to our troops to support them and their families. We owe it to our nation to ask difficult questions about this war and to demand truthful answers. This is a sobering Veterans Day for us all.

The Rev. Bernice Powell Jackson is executive minister of the United Church of Christ's Witness and Justice Ministries.

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