As a doctoral candidate in the Department of Romance Languages at the UO, I have dedicated the past four years of my academic career to research and writing on Chicano theater and performance. Central to my dissertation project is the history of the Chicano Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, during which time farm workers in California organized and participated in the five-year Delano Grape Strike. This unprecedented strike culminated in the first major victory for the United Farm Workers, which remains an active labor union today.
“That’s what she said.” When students walk into Denise Velasco’s sex education classroom at Network Charter School, they see this phrase on a poster. This appeal to juvenile humor is not what it seems: Look closer and you’ll see two women kissing beneath a word in bold letters — “Yes.” As corny as the poster is, it sends a clear message about sex.
“Consent is talked about on an almost daily basis in my class because I can incorporate it into every lesson in some way, shape or form,” says Velasco, who has taught sex ed at Network Charter School for 10 years. “It’s a big part of my program.”
On the evening of Nov. 17, a group gathered at Lane Independent Living Alliance (LILA) in downtown Eugene for a panel of six people, who identify as trans*, sharing stories and answering questions, which included everything from dating to experiences with Eugene’s healthcare system. Trans* is a term that refers to trans and gender non-conforming people. It encompasses all identities within the gender spectrum.
Ryan, who sleeps in a tent at the new Whoville homeless protest camp north of the U.S. Courthouse, says that he and his fellow campers are “managing” through the recent freezing nights. “It was cold last night,” Ryan says, declining to give his last name for fear of repercussions. “It was really cold last night. We could always use more blankets.”
For years rural residents along Highway 36 near Triangle Lake in Oregon’s Coast Range have been asking, even demanding, that someone look into the chemicals drifting from airplanes and onto their farms, and into their homes and drinking water. They’ve complained of the health effects on themselves and their children. They’ve had their own urine tested for the herbicides atrazine and 2,4-D.
Years before Opportunity Village came to life at the north end of Garfield Street, the idea of a transitional tiny house community was percolating in Andrew Heben’s head. While writing his senior thesis at the University of Cincinnati on the value of tent cities, Heben lived for a month at Camp Take Notice, a forested tent camp in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in which residents were involved in a complex process of self-governance.
Running for elected office can be a rollercoaster of ups and downs, but local green alley advocate Jeff Luers had a ride that was shorter and more abrupt than most. In the end, despite more than 6,000 write-in votes in the race, the votes for Upper Willamette Conservation Soil and Water District (SWCD) will not be tallied for reasons that Luers say “certainly contradict our understanding of democracy in this country.”
• The fundraising effort to save historic Civic Stadium as a community center for kids’ sports, soccer and other activities is close to a Dec. 1 deadline and we urge everyone to contribute financially or volunteer to help raise money. USL Pro and W-League soccer at Civic would be a big economic boost for Eugene and Lane County. Soccer is popular across the economic divide, filling stadiums in the Northwest, and Eugene could be next.
Tsunami Books on south Willamette was given notice earlier this fall that the building was going on the market and the longtime independent book store and performance venue would likely need to find a new home (see Biz Beat, 9/25). But we heard from store owner Scott Landfield that the building is now in the process of being sold to someone who supports the store staying put for at least a couple of years.
Wanna catch a show? Holiday theater abounds in our suddenly festive town. This year local theaters are offering fun, family-friendly shows that aren’t necessarily Christmas-focused. Your options are as follows...
• Ramón Ramírez , founding member and current president of farmworker’s rights organization PCUN, will speak on “Equitable Food Initiative: Why it is a Game Changer in the Agriculture Business,” at 5:30 pm Thursday, Nov. 20, in Knight Law Room 175 at the UO; and “Forming Coalitions and Grassroots Organizing,” at 6 pm on Friday Nov. 21, in the Global Scholars Hall Great Room 123. Gabino Palomares will perform after Friday’s presentation. Both presentations are free and open to the public.
For nine years, the killing of 15-year-old Jason Michael Porter has haunted me. Jason was unarmed and operating a reportedly stolen vehicle when he was stopped after being pursued by a Springfield police officer. The officer approached Jason’s car with gun drawn and fired a single shot into his face. The officer said he thought he saw Jason raising a gun. There was no gun. The Lane County district attorney, not waiting until the conclusion of the Oregon State Police investigation, quickly pronounced the killing “justified.”
There’s a certain bump that comes from being featured on the soundtrack for HBO cult favorite Girls. The show, about four twentysomethings stumbling through their lives in New York City, has featured new music by established pros like Belle and Sebastian, Santigold and Angel Haze, while also helping launch the careers of acts on the cusp of fame, such as Swedish duo Icona Pop, whose song “I Love It” became a smash hit after it was featured during a coke-fueled bender on the dramedy.
The message voters delivered to Congress in the recent elections: “We are tired of the political stunts and the gridlock. We are tired of your inability to pass legislation that will improve life in America. We are tired of the influence of big money on elections. KEEP IT UP!”
If you’ve been thrilled by the images of the NASA comet rendezvous, check out First Methodist Church at 13th & Olive this Friday, Nov. 21, at 7 pm for a harmonic convergence of eight local organists and one famous astronomer, Bernie Bopp. Bopp will narrate a performance that includes electronic sounds derived from signals from space, projected visuals of the moon, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn, as well as organ music related to the solar system including Mars Aeliptica by Rafael Ferreyra, Saturn by Bent Lorentzen, Neptune (from The Planets) by Gustav Holst, Hymn To The Moon byGloria Hodges, Missa Gaia by James Scott and more.
Award-winning British human machine, or rather the musician and beatboxer known as THePETEBOX, is touring the U.S. for the first time, producing sounds and rhythms using only his mouth, lips, tongue and voice.
In the world of bluegrass music, tradition is king. This makes Grammy-winning mandolin player John Reischman’s 2013 release Walk Along John something unique: an album of twelve Reischman originals, two covers and a collection of neo-traditional tunes.
I am a 30-year-old trans guy, on T since college, happy and comfortable with my sexuality. However, I can’t find any helpful health info on a fetish I’ve developed: I insert needles directly into my clit, maybe an inch and a half in. I’m not talking through it, like a piercing, but into it, going in at the head and moving down into the shaft.