SCREENSHOT FROM KOIN NEWS
This rant was originally published on our sister paper The Portland Mercury's blog, Blogtown. Get updates from the Rose City over here.
Citizens and lovers of Portland: I regret to inform you that the internet has given birth to yet another tiring, thoughtless “Portland is dying” think piece—this one courtesy of KOIN news.
I can’t imagine that viewers were clamoring for such a story, since it’s been done (so terribly) before, but KOIN’s recent article “From Wonderful to War Zone: Portland’s Reputation Transformation”—posing the unasked-for question, “Is Portland Over?”—takes the trope to new and dizzying heights.
While each paragraph of “From Wonderful to War Zone” contains at least one problematic phrase—that title for starters!—I’m a busy guy, and I’ve got more important things to do than constantly swatting down wildly inaccurate opinion pieces from every uninformed ding-dong that comes down the pike. But to give you a quick idea of the pro-business slant this article takes, the story contains quotes from 14 people, 7 of whom are business owners (!!), four out-of-towners, two misinformed people, and one local mayor—whether he knows what he's talking about is for you to decide. Interestingly not a single local homeless or social justice advocate was interviewed, even though the story hinges on homeless and social justice issues.
As you can guess, there's A LOT of ridiculousness here—which is why I’m limiting this rebuttal to only 7 of the most egregiously stupid statements in KOIN's article (of which there are oh-so-many). Buckle up! It’s gonna be fun.
1) “Everywhere you look, the City of Roses has become the city of trash and filth.”
This is THE VERY FIRST SENTENCE. Now if this story was clearly labeled as an "opinion piece” from yet another know-nothing, white business dude shaking his fist at the clouds while cursing the rising cost of potatoes… who would care? We'd all roll our eyes and move on with our lives. But nope! KOIN's article is presented as actual “news,” which means they presumably believe that this wild first statement is solidly based in fact.
So let’s break it down, shall we?
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