Category: news2

Little school, big politics -Willamette students speak out

If you want to hear firebrand political ideas, what better place to start than at the local college? As this year’s election season kicks into gear, the students of Willamette University have thrown themselves into the national political conversation. There is a diversity of political opinion at the school that makes itself known in nearly every political conversation. Salem Weekly sat down with students to hear more about their political thoughts and engagement. The majority of students appear to support Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, while supporters of former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton number slightly fewer but are just as vocal. While the reasons students support each candidate are diverse, many students’ opinions reflect broader conversations being had around the Clinton and Sanders campaigns. For Sanders supporters, one of the main issues students consistently raised was a wariness of establishment politics. To Sam Hilburn, class of 2016, Clinton represents a deepening of existing problems seen in the status quo, particularly income inequality. Senior Shamir Cervantes, the recently-resigned student body president, elaborates on the belief that Sander is more likely to listen to outsider perspectives, pointing to issues like foreign policy. Although Cervantes cannot vote due to his status as a non-citizen legal resident, he articulates an ardent support of Senator Sanders. When asked why he believes Sanders espouses a better position on foreign policy than the experienced Sec....

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Salem PACs -local money influences election

by Helen Caswell Political Action Committees (PACs) have existed in the United States since 1944, but have not come to the attention of most Americans until recently, when issues of campaign finance became central to public conversation. Here in Salem, they are a factor in local elections. Typically representing labor, business, trade union or ideological interests, PACs raise and spend funds to elect – or defeat – candidates for public office, ballot initiatives or legislation. Each PAC is allowed to give up to $5,000 to a candidate per election (primary and general elections are counted separately) up to $5,000...

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Disposable fast fashion and who it hurts

by Helen Caswell “The True Cost” of the cheap clothes sold at Salem retailers like Walmart, Target and Forever 21, says this documentary coming to the Salem Progressive Film Series, [is human misery and environmental degradation.] Shot in crowded garment factories in Third World countries and peppered with ads, old documentaries, vintage fashion images and news clips, the film discusses the changing way garments are sold in the United States and Europe. The price of clothing in our country has decreased markedly in the last few decades, and that has to do with where it’s made. In the 1960s,...

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Discover Your Roots

by Laura Gildart Sauter Anyone who still has reservations about the rapidly-growing “coolness factor” of Salem will have those doubts dispelled this Saturday, April 16th, at the third annual Local Roots Music Festival. A fundraiser for KMUZ, our local independent radio station, the all-day (9 am – 10 pm) event, to be held at Willamette Heritage Center’s Dye House, will also serve as the CD release party for “Local Roots Compilation Vol. III.” Feeling uninformed and slightly out of it for not being sure what “roots music” is, other than fun to say, I ask Melanie Zermer, President of the Board for KMUZ, to define the genre for me.  “It’s Americana,” she tells me.  To further clarify, there is this from the Americana Music Association via Wikipedia: [Americana] “is contemporary music that incorporates elements of various American roots music styles, including country, roots-rock, folk, bluegrass, R&B and blues, resulting in a distinctive roots-oriented sound that lives in a world apart from the pure forms of the genres upon which it may draw.” So…leaving definitions aside for the moment, this week, in Salem, “roots music” means a rapid-fire showcase for 20 of the Northwest’s finest regional musicians at an all-day party. The Roots Music Festival features a slew of talented folks, the names of whose genres generally require a hypen or two: neo-folk, retro-pop, alt-country, indie-rock.  Each individual, group, or...

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Political aficionado seeks office

“I’ve learned in life that process is as important as content when building consensus,” says Jan Kailuweit, candidate for the Ward 1 city council position. “Sometimes we lose people when the process is faulty, even when those same people would otherwise agree with the content. That’s the principle I will apply as city councilor, because, in my opinion, it is the most likely way to reach agreement.” Kailuweit is running against Cara Kaser for the seat in the local election held May 17. Ward 1 includes downtown and the closest neighborhoods in all directions, including West Salem. Arriving from...

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