06-16-2024  11:29 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

‘Feeling Our Age’: Oregon Artist Explores Aging Through Portraiture

64 women were painted and asked to reflect on lives well lived.

Off-Duty Guard Charged With Killing Seattle-Area Teen After Mistaking Toy for Gun, Authorities Say

Prosecutors charged 51-year-old Aaron Brown Myers on Monday in connection with the death of Hazrat Ali Rohani. Myers was also charged with assault after authorities say he held another teen at gunpoint. His attorney says Myers sincerely believed he was stopping a violent crime.

James Beard Finalists Include an East African Restaurant in Detroit and Seattle Pho Shops

The James Beards Awards are the culinary world's equivalent of the Oscars. For restaurants, even being named a finalist can bring wide recognition and boost business.

Ranked-Choice Voting Expert Grace Ramsey on What Portland Voters Can Expect in November

Ramsey has worked in several other states and cities to educate voters on new system of voting. 

NEWS BRIEFS

Montavilla Pool to Reopen in July After Mandatory Maintenance

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Coalition of 43 AGs Reach $700 Million Nationwide Settlement With Johnson and Johnson Over Deceptive Marketing; Oregon to Receive $15 Million

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Juneteenth 2024 Events in Portland and Seattle

View events celebrating Juneteenth in the Portland and Seattle area ...

Kobi Flowers Crowned 2024 Rose Festival Queen

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Summer Events are Shining Through at Multnomah County Library

Start your June by honoring Juneteenth, celebrating Pride and playing the Summer Reading game. ...

Judge could soon set trial date for man charged in killings of 4 University of Idaho students

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A judge could soon decide on a trial date for a man charged in the deaths of four University of Idaho students who were killed more than a year and a half ago. Bryan Kohberger was arrested roughly six weeks after the bodies of Ethan Chapin, Xana Kernodle,...

Crews rescue 28 people trapped upside down high on Oregon amusement park ride

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Emergency crews in Oregon rescued 28 people Friday after they were stuck for about half an hour dangling upside down high on a ride at a century-old amusement park. Portland Fire and Rescue said on the social platform X that firefighters worked with engineers...

Kansas lawmakers poised to lure Kansas City Chiefs from Missouri, despite economists' concerns

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A 170-year-old rivalry is flaring up as Kansas lawmakers try to snatch the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs away from Missouri even though economists long ago concluded subsidizing pro sports isn't worth the cost. The Kansas Legislature's top leaders...

Josh Sargent out for Colombia friendly, could miss Copa America

McLEAN, Va. (AP) — United States forward Josh Sargent could miss Saturday's friendly against Colombia and could be dropped from the Copa America roster. A 24-year-old from O'Fallon, Missouri, Sargent scored 16 goals in 26 league games with Norwich in England's second-tier League...

OPINION

Supreme Court Says 'Yes” to Consumer Protection, "No" to Payday Lenders 7-2 Decision Upholds CFPB’s Funding

A recent 7-2 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court gave consumers a long-sought victory that ended more than a decade of challenges over the constitutionality of the agency created to be the nation’s financial cop on the beat. ...

The Skanner News May 2024 Primary Endorsements

Read The Skanner News endorsements and vote today. Candidates for mayor and city council will appear on the November general election ballot. ...

Nation’s Growing Racial and Gender Wealth Gaps Need Policy Reform

Never-married Black women have 8 cents in wealth for every dollar held by while males. ...

New White House Plan Could Reduce or Eliminate Accumulated Interest for 30 Million Student Loan Borrowers

Multiple recent announcements from the Biden administration offer new hope for the 43.2 million borrowers hoping to get relief from the onerous burden of a collective

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Many voters in swing-state North Carolina are disengaged. Party activists hope to fire them up

OXFORD, N.C. (AP) — She opens the door wearing a gray tank top, Hello Kitty pajama pants and pink fuzzy slippers. With her 6-year-old son standing quietly beside her, she listens patiently as Liz Purvis begins discussing what's at stake in the election this November. The woman,...

Trump visits a Black church, addresses a MAGA activist gathering amid swing through pivotal Michigan

DETROIT (AP) — Donald Trump used back-to-back stops Saturday to court Black voters and a conservative group that has been accused of attracting white supremacists as the Republican presidential candidate works to stitch together a coalition of historically divergent interests in battleground...

South Africa's President Ramaphosa is reelected for second term after a dramatic late coalition deal

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was reelected by lawmakers for a second term on Friday, after his party struck a dramatic late coalition deal with a former political foe just hours before the vote. Ramaphosa, the leader of the African National...

ENTERTAINMENT

Meet Will Butler, the singer-songwriter who makes Broadway's 'Stereophonic' rock

NEW YORK (AP) — The assignment was daunting: Write a song for an onstage moment of transcendence. Make it kind of funny and exciting and for a five-piece band. Write it so it justifies an audience sitting in their seats for two hours before they hear it. And, oh, it must plausibly be a rock hit...

Roger Daltrey talks new tour, thoughts on Broadway’s ‘Tommy’ and future of The Who

NEW YORK (AP) — As Roger Daltrey hits the road on a short solo tour this June, he’s unsure if fans will ever see another tour from The Who. “I don’t see it. I don’t know whether The Who’ll ever will go out again,” he told The Associated Press over Zoom. The...

Book Review: Yume Kitasei explores space in a heist-driven action adventure novel

Grad student Maya Hoshimoto is having a hard time settling down on Earth after a thrilling career as an art thief, stealing looted objects and returning them to their people. So when her best friend Auncle — an octopus-like being from another solar system — offers one last job, of course she...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Outraged Brazilian women stage protests against bill to equate late abortions with homicide

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Trump visits a Black church, addresses a MAGA activist gathering amid swing through pivotal Michigan

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An emotional win for theaters, Hollywood: ‘Inside Out 2’ scores massive 5 million opening

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Italian Premier Meloni describes Putin's cease-fire offer for Ukraine as 'propaganda'

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UK royals unite on palace balcony, with Kate back at her first public event since cancer diagnosis

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Ukraine employs a flexible defense while waiting for new Western ammo to get to the front

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Sara Sidner and Laura Smith-Spark CNN

(CNN) -- A decision by world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking not to attend a conference in Israel in support of an academic boycott of the country has sparked controversy in Israel and a vitriolic debate online.

Hawking, who's a professor at Britain's Cambridge University, had initially accepted an invitation to the high-profile Israeli Presidential Conference, taking place in Jerusalem in June.

His change of heart this week appears to be the result of pressure from Palestinian academics to abide by a boycott set up in protest over Israel's occupation of Palestinian territory.

"A letter was sent on Friday to the Israeli president's office from Stephen Hawking regarding his decision not to attend the Presidential Conference, based on advice from Palestinian academics that he should respect the boycott," a Cambridge University spokesman told CNN on Thursday.

Hawking is also unable currently to fly for health reasons, the spokesman said.

Cambridge University initially said Hawking's poor health was the reason he was no longer attending, according to local media reports. Hawking, who is quadriplegic as a result of an incurable degenerative disease, has had repeated health problems.

Hawking's letter said he had first accepted the invitation "to express my opinion on the prospects for a peace settlement but also because it would allow me to lecture on the West Bank," the conference organizers said.

His decision to boycott the conference, hosted by Israeli President Shimon Peres, a Nobel peace laureate, has prompted a "Twitterstorm."

Some tweeters accuse him of anti-Semitism or comment on his physical disabilities, while others applaud his support for the Palestinian academics.

One tweeter, Ali Abunimah, observes: "Amazing how many Israelis on Facebook want Stephen Hawking dead, electrocuted or made to suffer in other nasty ways."

Haaretz writer Chemi Shalev, who describes himself as a "political junkie, proud father, concerned Israeli, veteran journalist," tweets: "My take: Stephen #Hawking is now the academic boycott movement's unlikely poster boy."

'Outrageous and improper'

Israel Maimon, chairman of the Presidential Conference, said Hawking's decision to pull out of the event was wrong.

"The academic boycott against Israel is in our view outrageous and improper, certainly for someone for whom the spirit of liberty lies at the basis of his human and academic mission," he said in a statement.

"Israel is a democracy in which all individuals are free to express their opinions, whatever they may be. The imposition of a boycott is incompatible with open, democratic dialogue."

Some 5,000 people from around the world are expected to attend, Maimon said, to hear speakers who include global technology company executives, academics, Nobel laureates, artists and past and present world leaders.

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Soviet-era President Mikhail Gorbachev and former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair are all expected to attend, he added.

Hawking, who's also a cosmologist, astronomer and mathematician, is the author of books including the best-seller, "A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes."

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement was established in 2005 by Palestinian civil society groups, which called for international groups and "people of conscience" to boycott or put pressure on Israel "until it complies with international law and Palestinian rights."

Omar Barghouti, one of the founding members of the movement, told CNN: "Stephen Hawking is the most prominent academic today to respect the Palestinian boycott guidelines and to refuse to visit Israel. This reminds us of the moral weight of academics in the boycott of apartheid of South Africa."

He said Hawking had been convinced by the "unanimous Palestinian voice" he heard from his contacts within the Palestinian community.

"There is deep appreciation among the Palestinians for Professor Hawking's respecting the boycott, and we sincerely hope that we convince many hesitant academics to follow suit and to shoulder a moral responsibility of boycotting Israel until it complies with international law," Barghouti said.

The Jerusalem Post reports that Hawking has visited Israel four times, most recently in 2006, when he lectured at Israeli and Palestinian universities.

West Bank housing

Israel's government gave initial approval Wednesday to plans to build 296 housing units in the settlement of Bethel, near the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas strongly condemned the decision, the official Palestinian news agency WAFA said Thursday.

Presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina, in a media statement quoted by WAFA, said the Israeli move would sabotage the peace process and efforts made by the U.S. administration to move it forward.

A U.N. Human Rights Council report in January said Israeli settlements had taken a "heavy toll" on the rights and sovereignty of Palestinians.

It outlined the consistent violation of Palestinians' rights in what it called a "creeping annexation" by Israel in East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Palestinians welcomed the report's findings, but Israel, which considers the Human Right Council to be biased, said the report would hurt the peace process.

There are about 250 settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, the report said, all started since Israel seized the lands after the Six Day War in 1967.

Israel's consistently growing presence in East Jerusalem and the West Bank has caused great tension between Israel and the Arab world, including Palestinians. Israel says its presence is needed for security.

CNN's Kareem Khadder, Stephanie Halasz, Michael Schwartz and Saad Abedine contributed to this report.

 

The Skanner Foundation's 38th Annual MLK Breakfast