Category: Essays & Letters

Giving Thanks

Story by Pete Shaw I celebrate Thanksgiving. No, I do not get traditionally festive by wearing hats with buckles and pretending that the holiday itself is based in anything other than colonialism, imperialism, racism, misogyny, and white supremacy. But as a person who in general is extremely thankful for knowing good people doing great things…

Letters From Spain, Part 3

Text and photos by Pete Shaw October 17, 2018 Dear Cyndy and Josh, La memòria és important. Plaça de Sant Felip Neri is where a piece of canvas comes to life. Nearly two weeks ago we were in Madrid’s Reina Sofia, a former hospital turned modern art museum. It houses Picasso’s “Guernica,” that masterpiece of…

Letters From Spain, Part 2

Text and photos by Pete Shaw October 12, 2018 Dear Margaret, I speak Spanish. This is a truth. An even greater truth would be to say that I speak it poorly. Languages are not my thing. I never got down programming a computer. I can’t read music. And I took seven years of Spanish to…

Letters from Spain, Part 1

  Text and photos by Pete Shaw October 6, 2018 Dear Dad, Spain makes a lot of olive oil. This I have known, but now it is something I understand to my core. Halfway through this four-point-five hour bus ride between Madrid and Granada, nearly every spot of land that is not residential is an…

Portland Anti-fascist Movement Continues to Build Solidarity Despite Predictable Violent Response from Local Government

Story by Pete Shaw On Saturday August 4, Portland’s anti-fascist community held its Stop the Hate rally, bringing together a wide swathe of Portlanders and people from the metropolitan area opposed to white supremacy. The event, organized by the group Popular Mobilization (POPMOB), was called in response to the white supremacist organization Patriot Prayer’s rally…

Bring Them Along

  Story by Pete Shaw When considering how to spend a Friday night, particularly a sultry one in late July, likely not high on most folks’ list is attending a talk on Pan-African organizing. But even if my Friend Ahjamu Umi of the All-African People’s Revolutionary Party (A-APRP) was not the featured speaker, the title…

Memories Forgotten and Gained, Old and New

Story by Pete Shaw “See my friends playing across the river” –Ray Davies   Spend any reasonably lengthy amount of time with me, and you will come to know in deep detail how much I love the music of The Kinks.  Music is the art through which I best interpret and understand this world and…

Effective Strategies Necessary to Defuse Right Wing Hate

Story and photos by Bette Lee Patriot Prayer can’t seem to get enough of Portland.  Even though the Vancouver, Washington white supremacist group led by Joey Gibson claims it hates Portland because it is a “liberal” city which coddles “pinkos, anarchists, leftists, liberals, homosexuals,” and other unsavory “anti-American” groups, its members seem hell-bent on holding…

My Aunt Dorothy

Story by Pete Shaw Wednesday, January 24, 2018 When my mother died about 8 years ago, my Aunt Dorothy, who is also my godmother, came down from The City to New Jersey to provide Comfort and Support for her brother, my father, John. My better 99%, Jessica, is Chinese and was raised a Buddhist. An…