Bob Dunning: Portland train heroes do us proud

Bob Dunning: Portland train heroes do us proud.
THREE PORTLAND HEROES … by now, just about everyone has heard of the two horrific murders aboard a MAX train in Portland, when three ordinary — yet extraordinary — heroes tried to stop some terribly hateful harassment of two young women riding the train … of the three men who intervened to protect the women, two were knifed to death and another was seriously injured … the women were not physically harmed … the murderer was arrested, also unharmed … When you look at the incredibly diverse backgrounds of the three heroes and the two young women, you realize just how remarkably brave that people can be in incredibly trying circumstances … never underestimate the power of the melting pot to combat hate … WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE … my good friend Harold from Public Health Advocates has invited me to a conference on June 14 — Flag Day — “dedicated to making the human right to safe and affordable drinking a reality in California and beyond.” … wow, “safe and affordable drinking” is something I’m sure the students in this college town can get behind … The authorities, no doubt, would like the “safe” part and the students would like the “affordable” part … as for “safe and affordable” drinking being a “human right,” that’s probably an issue for the U.N. to take up … OK, perhaps Harold meant to add the word “water” between “drinking” and “a reality” or maybe he was just trying to catch my attention … either way, I’ll just smile at his intentional/unintentional omission and move on as if he meant for the word “water” to be in there … Adds Harold, “California’s drought may be over, but the high-stakes politics of water in the Golden State continue like ever before, leaving more than 1 million people without reliable access to safe and affordable drinking water.” … I don’t know where Harold gets his figures, but if true, those are stunning numbers … But wait, Harold is not through with this issue … “Drinking water is a fundamental issue of health and health equity that can largely be solved through public policies currently being considered by the state legislature,” he goes on … “Join with other concerned residents, researchers, health and environmental advocates, policymakers and business people to learn about and discuss cutting-edge strategies for promoting water access, water quality and water consumption in California and the nation.” … The conference will be held at the Sheraton Grand in Sacramento … contact for more information on the conference or if you wish to clarify if this is strictly about water or a somewhat stronger class of beverage … FROM THE REDUNDANCY FILE … posted in the gutter where B Street runs into 14th was a large street sign that declared in bold-faced, all-cap letters “NO ILLEGAL DUMPING OF YARD WASTE.” (see photo) … this, of course, immediately begged the question of what sort of dumping of yard waste would be deemed “legal” … I’m sorry, officer, but I believe what we are doing would be classified as legal dumping, and, as you can see, it’s only “illegal dumping” that’s against the law … after all, we sort of presumed that “illegal dumping of yard waste” was, well, illegal, just as “illegal robbing of bank” is also against the law … I’ll have to check Davis Municipal Codes 32.01.090 and 32.01.125 to be sure I don’t become a common scofflaw the next time I come upon this intersection … — Reach Bob Dunning at

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