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October 23, 2013 01:52 PM

We couldn't make this up. From People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals:

October 23, 2013

Group Wants to Debut New Tongue-in-Cheek Attack of the Pigeons! Video Short at UCLA Bruins Game

A feathered fan of the No.3 University of Oregon's football team—a pigeon dubbed "Timothy," who apparently enjoys blocking one of the school's stadium cameras—has prompted PETA to ask the team to promote respect for all pigeons by posing a scary proposition. In a letter sent to the school's athletic director today, PETA asks the university to debut PETA's tongue-in-cheek Attack of the Pigeons! video short (available for preview here) on the Jumbotron during the Ducks' next home game against the No.12 UCLA Bruins on October 26. The video, shot like a kitschy B horror movie, playfully takes a look at what life would be like for humans if pigeons treated humans the way that some members of our species treat them.

"Timothy the Pigeon's popularity creates the perfect opportunity to push for compassion for all our feathered friends," says PETA Special Projects Manager Alicia Woempner. "PETA's video is a quirky way to point out that it's not nice to harass pigeons, who are gentle, attentive parents who mate for life and only want to be left alone to raise their families—and maybe take in a ball game or two."

Video in question is here.

October 18, 2013 08:57 AM

Oregon's first statewide Drive Less Challenge kicks off Oct. 21 and runs (and bikes and walks and carpools) through Nov. 1. The aim is to reduce vehicle miles traveled by 500,000 miles. Sign up at DriveLessChallenge.com/challenge to participate, and you can get an informational kit; you can even request a couple of freebies like leg straps for biking and pedometers.

For more Eugene-centric information, like connecting with carpools and figuring out your best bike routes, check out point2pointsolutions.org. Sponsors Bike Friday and Wells Fargo are donating prizes.

September 16, 2013 02:45 PM

The FBI released its "Crime in the United States" data for 2012. Eugene recorded 72 forcible rapes in 2012, down from 78 in 2011, and it's interesting to compare Eugene's reported crimes to other cities in Oregon. There were 40 rapes reported in Salem in 2012, up from 32 the previous year. Portland is cut off of the chart below for space, but 231 rapes were reported there in 2012, down from 258 in 2011. (Portland data is included in the chart.)

When comparing statistics on sexual assault, the numbers don't really reflect reality — the Department of Justice's "National Crime Victimization Survey: 2006-2010" stated that nationally, the majority of rapes (56 percent) go unreported to police. Eugene's stats could mean that the city has an unusually high reporting rate thanks to the work of groups like Sexual Assault Support Services. It could also mean that the rate of rape is higher here. It could also mean that there is a low reporting rate and things are really, really bad. As a SASS staffer told EW over the phone: "It's not like comparing apples to oranges. It's like comparing apples to rocks."

2012 Sexual Assault Data

August 5, 2013 04:57 PM

Adieu, Crown Vic, we hardly knew ye. Fewer of those familiar headlights will pull Eugeaneans over in coming years; EPD will now purchase Ford Interceptor SUVs. Check out the Interceptors along with three others that the cops considered Tuesday, Aug. 6, at EPD headquarters.

More info from EPD's press release:

	Eugene Police Department
Unveils New SUV Patrol Sedans

SUMMARY:  As a result of Ford no longer manufacturing the Crown Victoria sedan, EPD
has spent two years testing patrol vehicles currently on the market. We will now
display each of the four tested vehicles to the media and show the differences
between each vehicle.


What:   Chevrolet Tahoe, Chevrolet Caprice, Ford Interceptor Sedan, and the Ford SUV.
When:   TUESDAY, August 6, at 10:00 a.m.
Where:  Eugene Police Department Public Parking Lot
300 Country Club Road, Eugene, OR 97401
Who:    Sergeant Angie San Miguel will present the vehicles, and patrol officers
will be on-hand to explain and demonstrate the differences and allow media to ride
in the vehicles.

After two years of testing and research, Eugene Police Department will be purchasing
new fuel-efficient patrol cars that are expected to save 35 percent on fuel compared
to the older Crown Victoria models that are being discontinued by the manufacturer. 
The new model, the Ford Interceptor SUV, was tested along with five other vehicle
models and scored highest on operational and fuel efficiency.###

July 24, 2013 10:06 AM

An EPD officer who resigned in December pled guilty to sex abuse charges. Here's EPD's press release; we're pretty sure that the December 2013 is actually 2012, since 2013's December hasn't happened yet:

Today, Stefan Zeltvay, former EPD officer, age 44, of Eugene pled guilty to five counts of Sexual Harassment and one count of Sexual Abuse in the Third Degree.

Zeltvay, who has resigned from his employment with EPD, was with the department since September 18, 1995.

Eugene Police received a possible criminal complaint about Zeltvay on July 10, 2012. During the criminal investigation, EPD learned of new, potentially criminal acts by Zeltvay and began investigating those. Ultimately, the findings were forwarded to the District Attorney.

The criminal investigation identified a number of women who were sexually abused or sexually harassed by Zeltvay. His criminal acts occurred over a period of years.  The incidents of abuse happened in a number of settings. They occurred while Zeltvay was on-duty and off-duty, during social functions and on personal time. His criminal behavior involved inappropriate comments and offensive and sexual touching.

Because of the history and nature of the abuse, EPD is concerned about the possibility there could be more victims. Anyone with information can call Eugene Police Sgt. Scott McKee 541.682.5144. If they are uncomfortable calling police, they can call the Police Auditor at 541.682.5016.

Zeltvay employed by Eugene Police as a patrol officer in September 1995 and worked patrol and rapid deployment unit until he became a School Resource Team Officer August 10, 2003. At this time, there have been no sustained reports of crimes from the schools. Zeltvay was placed on modified duty October 31, 2012 and then on paid administrative leave on December 20, 2012.

EPD Career Positions and Dates for Stefan Zeltvay:

Hired September 18, 1995. School Resource Team since August 2003.

Position Hired Into: Police Officer, September 18, 1995

Assignments per PAF history

Probationary Recruit Officer: September 18, 1995- March 18, 1997

Patrol: March 1997- January 4, 1999

RDU (Rapid Deployment Unit): January 5, 1999-February 5, 2000

Patrol: February 6, 2000-August 23, 2003

School Resource Team: August 24, 2003-December 19, 2013

Desk Duty (modified duty on 10/31/12)

Placed on Admin Leave: December 20, 2013

May 9, 2013 09:26 AM

Today is a big fundraising day for Basic Rights Oregon because it's the first-ever National Give OUT Day (see what they did there?), in which people give to causes that support gay rights. The video after the link describes several aspects of gay rights that BRO is working on, which is important because sometimes they get forgotten in the midst of the big conversations on marriage equality.

The School Garden Project helps Lane County schools with gardens, and we all know that this nation needs to work on its messed-up relationship with food. What better way than to help kids understand food by growing and eating some of the good stuff? Now the organization is in the running for a Seeds of Change grant, and they need help with online voting (through May 17). Go vote for them!

May 7, 2013 08:46 AM

There's a rally to support union negotiators at UO today:

 

 

WHAT: RALLY - Faculty at University of Oregon support their Bargaining Team

WHERE: Knight Library (Northwest Entrance)

WHEN: Noon, Tuesday, May 7

WHY: Faculty are rallying in support of their negotiating team to send an unambiguous message to the Administration: prioritizing high quality research and education means reaching a fair agreement with the faculty union now.

 

May 6, 2013 05:54 PM

Now that warm weather is upon us, all the fun bike events are coming out to play. Here are a few of Eugene's events this week (May 7-12):

Tuesday: Bike Commute Fashion Show. From 7 am to 9:30 am, roll the red carpet and have your picture taken in your best bike commuting gear. The event even includes free minor bike repairs, so meet up on the South Riverbank Path behind the Campbell Center.

Wednesday: National Bike to School Day. Go to school by bike. Heck, bike by a school even if you're no longer a student. Solidarity!

Thursday: Bike in Shapes. While the details for this month's ride aren't set yet, previous maps are pretty awesome, and you can plan on meeting at a local bar and then heading off for a super fun ride. Check the Wordpress site Wednesday night for details.

Saturday: WREN's Walkin' and Rollin' Event: Local organizations display educational information to help you get to know your local wetlands while you walk or ride.

Sunday: CycloFemme. The annual Mother's Day event celebrates women on bikes. Dudes and those who don't want to check a gender box are also welcome.

May 2, 2013 11:39 AM

The League of American Bicyclists has released its annual rankings of bike-friendly states, and Oregon is up to number three in 2013 from number five in 2012. Hooray for us!

Oregon scores high in the categories of legislation and enforcement, policies and programs, and education and encouragement. Our biggest weakness is in the area of infrastructure and funding.

April 25, 2013 11:22 AM

Fossil Fool

UO's Bike Music Festival returns for the fifth time Friday, April 26. If you've never seen a pedal-powered stage, head down to the EMU Amphitheater or to Cozmic.

Events on campus start at 3 pm with slam poet Jared Paul, and the event rides on to Cozmic at 8 pm with Fossil Fool (pictured above), "the only MC who can rock a mic while he rides his bike," performing en route, according to the BMF's press release. "He is the inventor and producer of the Soul Cycle — an on-board audio system for bikes — and founder of Rock the Bike."

To find out when and where Gritt & Grizzle, My Goodness, Marv Ellis, Grey Matter Jugglers, Eleven Eyes and Medium Troy perform, check out the UO's page.

April 17, 2013 04:36 PM

We found out about Bike In Shapes just a little too late for our bike-themed Earth Day issue, but this event looks geeky and fun in all the right ways. They're meeting at the new Bier Stein at 7:45 pm on Thursday, April 18 — and ending there, too. Be there or be not-a-fractal.

Neatomapsquito!

April 5, 2013 04:22 PM

Two city councilors have informed us that Councilor George Brown, who initially supported the city fee measure that will appear on the May 21 ballot, has changed his position and will now oppose the measure. Brown told EW earlier this week that he was considering changing his mind, but he needed more time to weigh both arguments.

Councilors Brown, Mike Clark, George Poling and Betty Taylor oppose the measure. Councilors Chris Pryor, Claire Syrett, Alan Zelenka and Mayor Kitty Piercy support it.

To EW's knowledge, Councilor Greg Evans has not yet taken a public position; we sent an email inquiry today to confirm this and will update this post when we hear back. Brown has not yet responded to messages left at his home and business.

[Update: 8:50 pm April 5]: Evans responded that he opposes the fee proposal because he is not satisfied with the options presented by the staff to close the budget shortfall. He voted to place the issue on the ballot so that citizens could decide whether they wish to pay the fee, and he doesn't believe it will pass.

March 27, 2013 05:58 PM

Not too long ago, a friend and I had a conversation about how much the societal conflict between the religion he holds dear and the fact that he's gay made him feel like crap for a long time. He said that feeling like he had to choose between two parts of himself that felt equally true was one of the darkest times he's ever had. His happy ending to that conflict, luckily, was meeting a wonderful man who was already connected to a community that embraced them both.

If you're so inclined, please share these links so that anyone who happens to be gay and struggling with something similar might have that struggle cut shorter.

Christianity

Islam (but not with local links)

Judaism

Religious Response Network contact info (Eugene)

Please add additional links in the comments if you know of them -- I'm certain that there's more out there. I don't know a lot more than the Cliffs Notes versions of most religions (and Google was none too helpful, just telling me that Buddhism is generally nice to gay folks), but there are awesome people of all kinds, right?

March 22, 2013 09:18 AM

Solidarity! Supporters of marriage equality will rally 5 to 7 pm Tuesday, March 26, at the federal building at 211 E. 7th Ave. They're gathering to express solidarity during U.S. Supreme Court deliberations on the right of gays and lesbians to marry. Oregon United for Marriage organized the event, and speakers include Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy and City Councilor Claire Syrett.

More info here