07-31-2021  6:12 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Unemployed Oregonians to Lose Pandemic Benefits in September

The state will stop paying the 0 weekly unemployment bonus after Labor Day

Statue of Black Hero on Lewis & Clark Trip Toppled in Portland

A statue in Mt. Tabor Park commemorating York, an enslaved Black member of the Lewis and Clark expedition, has been toppled and damaged

Cannabis Chemical Delta-8 Gains Fans, Scrutiny

A chemical cousin of pot’s main intoxicating ingredient has rocketed to popularity over the last year. The cannabis industry and state governments are scrambling to reckon with it amid debate over whether it’s legal.

Report: SPD Stops Black People, Native Americans More

A newly-released report shows Seattle police officers continue to stop and use force against Black people far more often than white people.

NEWS BRIEFS

Mayor Declares State of Emergency Due to Extreme Heat

The City of Portland opens additional cooling centers and three outdoor misting centers ...

Obituary: Joan Brown-Kline, June 13, 1948 - July 17, 2021

A service for Joan Brown-Kline, held in Georgia, will be livestreamed starting at 11:50 a.m. PT (2:50 p.m. EDT) on Saturday, July 31 ...

Portland Bars Camping in Forested Areas During Fire Season

The move aims to protect protect individuals experiencing homelessness and people in nearby homes from potentially deadly wildfires ...

OSF Presents Free Virtual Reading of Emilia

The event streams live on Wednesday, July 28 at 5:30 p.m. ...

Summer Bike Events to be Held at El Centro Milagro

This summer the streets around Milagro will host a cycle of fun activities. ...

Oregon AG orders release of identities of heat wave victims

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The attorney general of Oregon has ordered release of the identities and addresses of most of the state’s 83 confirmed deaths from hyperthermia during June's heat wave. The Oregonian/OregonLive reported that it and other media sought the information to...

Oregon approves killing up to 4 wolves in eastern Oregon

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has approved killing up to four uncollared wolves in eastern Oregon’s Baker County, where officials say the Lookout Mountain wolf pack attacked four cows in 14 days. The state has confirmed that wolves killed...

Drinkwitz, Pittman back for Southeastern Conference encores

HOOVER, Ala. (AP) — Missouri and Arkansas both had some encouraging signs, if not great records, in their first seasons under new coaches. Now, the Tigers’ Eliah Drinkwitz and Razorbacks’ Sam Pittman are among four second-year Southeastern Conference coaches trying to...

OPINION

Services Available for Victims and Survivors of Community Violence in Multnomah County

The number of incidents of community violence — domestic violence, sexual violence, trafficking, person-to-person violence and gun violence — is devastating ...

Black America Needs a ‘New Normal’: Equitable Credit Access to Build Wealth

The rippling effects of a massive economic downturn has caused the nation to lose 9.5 million jobs - more losses than even those of the Great Recession ...

The President Needs to Pull Out All Stops

Majority Whip Clyburn, Democratic leader in the U.S. House of Representatives, made the observation that the filibuster currently being used in the U.S. Senate to block the Voting Rights Bill as well as the George Floyd Bill, is a matter of tradition and not...

NAACP Vancouver Letter to the Community: Police Accountability

NAACP Vancouver reacts to the descision in the case of Jonah Donald, a Black man shot and killed by a Clark County deputy ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

At 46, African skateboarder finally wows mom at Tokyo Games

TOKYO (AP) — At age 46, the second-oldest skateboarder at the Tokyo Games is hoping to not have a heart attack and have mounds of fun. Should be no problem. Fun has been a life’s work for Dallas Oberholzer. “I have never had a real job. I have never applied for a job," he...

Suburban NY county considers letting police sue protesters

MINEOLA, N.Y. (AP) — Lawmakers in a suburban New York county are set to vote Monday on a proposal that would allow police officers to sue protesters and collect financial damages — a move civil rights activists say is payback for demonstrations after the police killing of George Floyd last year...

7 Kurds slain in Turkey; officials deny ethnic motive

ISTANBUL (AP) — Authorities said Saturday that 10 suspects have been detained over the killing of seven people from an ethnic Kurdish family in Turkey's central Konya province. Family members say the attack was ethnically motivated, while authorities blame a long-running feud between two...

ENTERTAINMENT

Director James Gunn assembles his perfect ‘Suicide Squad’

Could a scoundrel DC Comics character like Peacemaker ever be on the same level as Superman? How about Polka-Dot Man? Or Ratcatcher? The man who made Rocket Racoon, Groot and Star-Lord household names thinks so. James Gunn can’t help it: He loves an outsider. It’s the...

Harvey Weinstein: 1 sexual assault count dismissed, for now

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles judge on Thursday dismissed one of 11 sexual assault counts against Harvey Weinstein, giving the former movie mogul and convicted rapist a minor and possibly temporary victory. At a hearing with the 69-year-old Weinstein in the courtroom,...

'Toxic' podcast explores Britney Spears conservatorship

NEW YORK (AP) — As the fate of Britney Spears' conservatorship is in the hands of a Los Angeles Superior Court judge, two podcast hosts who have spent hours dissecting the case are hopeful change is coming for the singer to become more independent. Tess Barker and Barbara Gray...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

UK prime minister's wife says she's pregnant again

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s wife, Carrie, said Saturday that she is expecting the...

Ammunition shelves bare as U.S. gun sales continue to soar

SEATTLE (AP) — The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with record sales of firearms, has fueled a shortage of ammunition...

Turkey evacuates panicked tourists by boat from wildfires

ISTANBUL (AP) — Panicked tourists in Turkey hurried to the seashore to wait for rescue boats Saturday after...

Germany's Laschet attends WWII revolt observances in Poland

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Germany’s center-right candidate to replace Angela Merkel as chancellor in the country's...

Evacuations by sea as high temps fuel wildfires in Sicily

MILAN (AP) — Firefighters on the Italian island of Sicily on Saturday battled dozens of wildfires fueled by...

Wildfire in western Greece forces village, beach evacuations

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — A wildfire that broke out Saturday in western Greece forced the evacuation of four...

Roger M. Groves, Professor of Law, Florida Coastal School of Law

Former Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky has been charged with sexually assaulting eight boys over a 15 year period. Some of those years were while he was a well-established, highly regarded assistant coach under the venerable Joe Paterno. Caught in the web are two high level Penn State administrators, who have found the exit sign and face difficult legal charges for failing to report to police the alleged Sandusky's actions and then lying to a grand jury as part of a cover up. Paterno is gone too, as is Penn State President Graham Spanier.

Sandusky's attorney denies these allegations. So do the indicted administrators. Sandusky may be innocent and I will not presume him guilty now. If, however, the allegations are true, it is tragic for those victims and embarrassing for the university. But the big picture implications are far greater. It should force us to think about the vulnerability of 440,000 student athletes when under the tutelage and quasi-custodial care of coaches.

One issue that comes to mind is this: Shouldn't the teenagers recruited and wooed by the school—and those teenagers' parents—receive a report from the school confirming the physical and mental health of the coaches before they decide whether to commit the four most important years of the teenager's life to the school? And shouldn't the teenagers and parents receive an assurance that the university has a system of monitoring the coaches that they employ and send as agents on their behalf? I think so.  

Maybe such a report would not have prevented the first despicable act, if it happened. But if there was an institutional monitoring plan as serious as that which schools use to monitor tuition payments, there would not be seven more acts to investigate. If it is true that a graduate assistant told Paterno he actually saw Sandusky sexually assault a 10-year-old boy in the shower while Sandusky was still coaching at Penn State, and if it is true that Sandusky was still allowed access to Penn State showers after his retirement several years later, that means there is a gap in the monitoring and reporting system. During part of this time, unsuspecting young men were being recruited—by Sandusky—to play defense at Penn State. When were they to be told about the mental health of the recruiter? Not at all, I suspect. Contemplate the potential for abuse among the 18,000 teams that compete for NCAA championships among various sports. It's a scary thought.

And the issue is not confined to mental transgressions that could lead to sexual crimes. The recruited teenagers and parents are also without knowledge of the physical capabilities or challenges of the coaches who recruit them.  

Minnesota's first-year head coach Jerry Kill had a seizure on the sidelines this year during the second game of a long 12-game season.  Over the past few weeks, Kill has discouraged further discussion of his seizures, calling it a distraction for his team. This is Kill's first season with the Gofers, but he had seizures in 2001, 2005 and 2006 while coaching at Southern Illinois. He admitted on ESPN U that he's had 16 seizures over his adult years. He recently signed a seven-year extension to his existing contract.

During this college football season, former Florida State football coach Bobby Bowden admitted he had past bouts with prostate cancer. That is a difficult and courageous disclosure, but the announcement came four years after discovery. So he knew he had a life-threatening illness while he was still in the position to recruit players to commit their college careers to his school.  

We emphasize, as we should, that we want what is best for these coaches with physical ailments. They are under a type of pressure that I never experienced and cannot fully appreciate. They float their work product for analysis before hundreds of thousands of half-crazed stadium critics every week. The media follows their every move. And these coaches in the end must depend on those teenagers for their very job. For that they have my enduring respect and sympathy. Most likely they have more stress heaped on them than they deserve and so too are potential health issues.

But is it a high enough priority among the universities to equip the students and parents with qualitative information about a coach's fitness, either mental or physical, so they can make an informed decision about whether to attend that university? No one seems to raise the issue. Perhaps that is because those with a microphone are more concerned about the institutions than they are about the people who play for them. 

Teenage student athletes and their parents should have access to high quality information about the coaches who become surrogate parents or at least stewards from their remainder of their adolescence into manhood and trustees for their career aspirations. The NCAA should take a fraction of their three-quarters of a billion dollars they receive annually and develop a fitness certification or at least some standard for institutional testing, monitoring and reporting of coaches, and disclosure to the recruited teenagers and parents. Parents should know if the coach had a heart attack last year, or prostate cancer in the recent past, the diagnosis, and if there are any sexual assaults or other criminal conduct in the past.

Between the NCAA, the university and the dozens of athletic conferences, there is more than enough bureaucratic infrastructure to establish uniform rules of testing, monitoring, reporting and disclosure. If existing statutes need to be amended to create a balance between privacy rights of the coach and the right to know of players and parents, we can make it happen. But until we face the issue, we put close to a half million student athletes at risk. We often advocate greater transparency. Here is an opportunity to act on it.

Roger M. Groves is a Professor of Law at Florida Coastal School of Law, teaching business and sports courses and director of The Center for Sports and Social Entrepreneurship. Visit Roger at http://center4players.com/ and follow him at [email protected]

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