First Black Woman Elected President of the Portland Rose Festival
Teri Bowles-Atherton was elected President of the Portland Rose Festival Foundation at the Annual Board meeting on October 25th.
Bowles-Atherton, who currently serves as Director of Physician Development and Provider Compensation for Providence Medical Group, first volunteered 10 years ago when she signed up to be wardrobe coordinator and chaperone for the Rose Festival Court. In 2009 she was invited to join the board.
Bowles-Atherton is a second-generation Oregonian and daughter of Gail Black-Bowles and Carl Bowles. She is a Thanksgiving baby, born at Emanuel Hospital and raised in Northeast Portland where she attended Alameda Elementary School, Beaumont Middle School, and later St. Mary’s Academy.
Bowles-Atherton completed her Bachelor of Science degree at Vanderbilt University, and returned to Portland where she met and married Jermaine Atherton.
Like many Portlanders, Bowles-Atherton’s family has a history with the Rose Festival, dating back to the 1960’s when her uncle, “Jimmy Bang-Bang Walker” entered the first Grand Floral Parade float representing the African-American Albina community.
Crab Fishermen Sue over Climate Change
The Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations, a group of California crab fishermen, is suing thirty fossil fuel companies for damages the crab industry has suffered, as a result of climate change.
Noah Oppenheim, the executive director for the group, told the Guardian newspaper, “We’re taking a stand for the captains and crew, their families and the business owners that support the fleet…The fossil fuel companies named in our lawsuit knowingly caused harm, and they need to be held accountable.”
The court filing says in part, “Defendants have known for nearly 50 years that greenhouse gas pollution from their fossil fuel products, has a significant impact on Earth’s climate, including a warming of the oceans. Defendants concealed the dangers, sought to undermine public support for greenhouse gas regulation, and engaged in massive campaigns to promote the ever-increasing use of their products at ever greater volumes”.
The suit follows the filing of Juliana versus the U-S, in which a group of schoolchildren seek redress for their future suffering under oil industry-caused climate change.
Ann Aiken, the U.S. District Court judge overseeing the Juliana case in Oregon, said in 2016, “Exercising my reasoned judgment, I have no doubt that the right to a climate system capable of sustaining human life is fundamental to a free and ordered society.”
Aiken also said “Even when a case implicates hotly contested political issues, the judiciary must not shrink from its role as a co-equal branch of government.”
But it seems likely that the Supreme Court will do just that, as it has repeatedly delayed access to the Courts.
The crab fishermen’s suit also joins cities such as New York and San Francisco, in seeking direct reparations for damages, and anticipated damages, from human-induced global warming.
FBI classifies Proud Boys as Extremist Group
A very small number of the alt-right group Patriot Prayer gathered in downtown Portland on Saturday to protest the “Me Too” movement.
The so-called “Him Too” event was countered by hundreds of survivors of sexual abuse, and their supporters, who stood together to say “enough is enough”, and that survivors must be honored and believed, rather than mocked and dismissed.
Nearly a hundred Portland Police, and Federal officers, dressed in riot gear, were there to separate the two groups, and offer protection to the outnumbered and overwhelmed Patriot Prayer contingent.
The Patriot Prayer demonstrators were joined by several members of the Proud Boys, who have been classified by the FBI as an extremist group with ties to white nationalism, according to a report in The Guardian. The report was based on a document produced by Washington State law enforcement. The FBI’s designation had not previously been made public.
The document goes on to say the FBI had warned local law enforcement agencies that the Proud Boys are actively recruiting in the Pacific Northwest. And that Proud Boys members have contributed to the recent escalation of violence at rallies held on college campuses, and in cities like Charlottesville, Portland, and Seattle.
The document was provided to the Guardian by the government transparency non-profit “Property of the People." It was part of an internal affairs investigation into a probationary deputy in the Clark County Sheriff’s Department.
The Clark County deputy, Erin Willey, was fired last July after a photo of her wearing a “Proud Boys Girls” sweatshirt was published by the Columbian newspaper. “Proud Boys Girls” is the female auxiliary of the Proud Boys group.
In addition to the FBI designation as extremists and white nationalists, the Proud Boys are listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
In Clark county, the Proud Boys have been integral to the Patriot Prayer movement, which organizes alt-right rallies, such as the “Him Too” event, in Portland, Seattle, Vancouver, and other Pacific Northwest cities.