Smoke, Politics and Supporting Local News in Slant

As we write this, Eugene and Springfield are covered in choking smoke from nearby fires in the Willamette National Forest. The Bedrock Fire continues to grow, uncomfortably close, and the Lookout Fire is bringing up bad memories of the 2020 Labor Day Fires. Add in the horrifying news from the Maui fire and the growing human death toll, as well as the reporting of 3,000 missing pets in Hawaii from the fires, and this week has been feeling a little End Times-ish. A bright spot is the news about Our Children’s Trust winning a climate case in Montana — see for the details on how the youth are fighting climate change in the courts as well as our story on how 2020 Holiday Farm wildfire survivors are dealing with the latest blaze. 

  Taken aback by the Holvey recall ad in Eugene Weekly this week? We are, too. It makes allegations trying to connect Rep. Paul Holvey to a reprehensible attack on a canvasser. The most important thing is we hope the canvasser is OK, and recovering emotionally and physically. The Eugene police tell us they have “taken a report and are investigating an incident that occurred when someone was politically canvassing.” As journalists, as soon as we were notified of the allegations, we started looking into them, but we don’t publish a story until we have as much information as possible. UFCW 555 and the RPH campaign, however, rushed to take out an ad using the incident as a political tool, full of comparisons to Donald Trump — which is weird because in our experience their own campaign is both childish and nasty, kind of like Trump. We hope that rather than just pointing fingers, the folks behind the RPH campaign look at their own tactics, too. 

What we’re reading: Homelessness Is A Housing Problem: How structural factors explain U.S. patterns by housing scholar Gregg Colburn and data journalist Clayton Page Aldern. Highly recommended by the folks on the Eugene Chamber of Commerce committee working on homelessness. Glad the Chamber is taking on that tough issue. 

Did you know that you can’t call Blairally, Level Up or Big City Gamin’ a “barcade”? Well, you can, but you will get a nasty note from Barcade™ letting you know that they hold the registered trademark for Barcade®. Barcade® chain is a mainly East Coast operation, with one Barcade® in Los Angeles. Eugene Weekly got a letter from Barcade®’s “intellectual property support manager” letting us know that if we removed the reference to “barcade” in our story on where queer folks go to party, they would “consider the matter amicably resolved.” Read about it at

• Some of us are subscribers to High Country News, an enviro magazine covering the West. High Country is a nonprofit, and in a recent email, the publication explained how you can leave a legacy in your will to support its coverage. That’s a whole step beyond giving public radio your car. Did you know that Eugene Weekly has a nonprofit arm? The Twin Rivers Institute for Press Sustainability supports not only EW but also can support other small local papers in the Willamette Valley. We’re not quite ready to start asking you to remember us in your will (do you really love us more than you love your wayward children?), but go to to find out more about how to support local news through a charitable donation! TRIPS even takes PayPal.