When 911 calls go unanswered

Gov. John Kitzhaber is mulling over legislation that would declare a public safety emergency in areas of Oregon where 911 calls aren’t being answered. Thanks to budget cuts, certain counties in Oregon haven’t been able to retain the necessary number of public employees to maintain a fully staffed emergency dispatch system.

Your debt is their profit

As though life isn’t already hard enough on students financially, now the government is making a massive profit on our struggle to become educated, well-rounded citizens.

PSU’s emerging connection to Portland’s economy

Recently the Portland Business Journal published an article discussing Portland State’s emerging connection with the local economy—to the tune of a $1.4 billion annual impact. With PSU about to triple the size of the School of Business Administration (with the help of a recent $8 million grant), our impact on the local economy will only grow.

Greener on the other side

Recently, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid released a comparative look at the medical costs of different hospitals in every state, causing anger and sheer confusion as prices for similar procedures varied by thousands of dollars, even within regions.

Serving a community in need

Back in the 1940s, before Portland State was a recognized four-year university, the Vanport Extension Center was founded as an avenue for World War II veterans to get a college education. PSU’s evolution to Oregon’s largest state university was built on serving a community’s needs.

Is America ready?

This past week, professional basketball player Jason Collins announced to the world that he is gay. He told Sports Illustrated, “No one wants to live in fear. I’ve always been scared of saying the wrong thing. I don’t sleep well. I never have. But each time I tell another person, I feel stronger and sleep a little more soundly.”

KPSU aims for FM

KPSU, Portland State’s student-run radio station, wants to become the first college FM station in the Portland metro area—if they can raise enough funds to do so.

Common-sense gun control

Recently, a new piece of legislation increasing gun control was unanimously approved by Multnomah Country commissioners, despite heavy opposition from gun enthusiasts. Since state law overrules local measures concerning gun control, only minor adjustments to the county law were actually made.

Parking vs. affordable housing

Recently there’s been an ongoing debate over the construction of apartment complexes built without reserved parking for their residents. While some people applaud the effort to increase the incentives to forgo owning a car, others claim it’s impractical and will lead to more crowded and competitive curbside parking in residential areas.

Background checks for guns? Nope, sorry

In a 54–46 vote, the United States Senate shot down all new background check requirements for gun-buying purposes. Astounding. I don’t understand what’s controversial about requiring people to go through a thorough background check before allowing them to buy a device capable of killing people. The resistance doesn’t make sense, especially when, according to a CNN/ORC International poll, 86 percent of Americans support implementing universal background checks.

Undercover TriMet

TriMet has decided to use street-clothed officers to better patrol fare dodgers and disruptive or abusive people. This is completely unacceptable. The first issue I have with it is that, uniform or no uniform, the outcome is the same: People who plan on skipping the fare will see the officer and get off, and a disruptive individual will most likely cease being so in the presence of an officer.