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Slant 2016-12-29

• Resolution for 2017: Slant will not be “fair and balanced,” whatever Fox News means by that.   

EW’s “Give Guide” issue was especially popular this holiday season. Before the end of 2016, we want to add a few worthy nonprofits that were left out and would welcome your gifts. Tim Boyden’s Out on a Limb gallery at Broadway and Pearl is one of only three long-time galleries left downtown. He’s celebrating five years of showing work by fine local artists, along with his own creations. We have also gotten messages advocating for Oregon’s Network for Reproductive Options; Eugene PeaceWorks and its new radio station, KEPW; Eugene Civic Alliance’s work on its new sports facility for kids; and LandWatch Lane County’s work to preserve farm and forestlands. Our takeaway? Lane County has a plethora of amazing nonprofits, and we should all support their good work!

• Resolution for 2017: Slants will be short.

• Who’s in charge at the University of Oregon, please? The case of law Prof. Nancy Shurtz and her Black Man in a White Coat costume at a Halloween party in her home, a costume for which she has publicly apologized, is likely headed for the courts. The UO hired a Portland law firm to investigate. Why didn’t the school’s Office of Affirmative Action & Equal Opportunity investigate? The law school, headed by a dean who is stepping down in 2017, fell into what sounds like complete disarray over this issue. Aren’t the faculty lawyers and the UO’s student lawyers competent to fairly examine the question of a faculty member wearing such an insensitive costume and its ramifications? Finally, the UO released the report of the Portland lawyers to the public, although the UO is prohibited by law from disclosing personnel matters, in what Prof. Shurtz calls “a supremely public retaliation against me.” Of course, she has hired a lawyer.

• Resolution for 2017: Slant will not be preachy.

• Good news from The Washington Post newsroom, writes Ken Doctor on Politico: In 2017, WaPo will be adding about 60 jobs, many in investigative reporting. Doctor says the paper has been profitable in 2016 — also good news at a time when solid journalism is sorely needed. We’re counting on Editor Marty Baron, most famous from his Boston Globe days, to cover the Trump administration like the Post did Watergate.

• Resolution for 2017: Slant will watch local and state governments while acknowledging their new importance in America.

• Happy New Year! We are so very done with 2016. From David Bowie to Prince to George Michael to Carrie Fisher, WTF? But celebrities aside, let’s also note that in 2016 tigers were declared extinct in Cambodia, the Irrawaddy river dolphin became functionally extinct in Laos and according to Portland writer John Platt’s “Extinction Countdown” for Scientific American, 740 newly recognized bird species were added to the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species and 13 of them were already exctinct.

• Resolution for 2017: Slant will try not to be depressing.