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Day: October 13, 2017

Bravo ends scoreless streak

Of the Keizertimes

With five minutes remaining, McNary appeared to be heading for another 0-0 tie.

Jovanie Bravo had other plans, out-running the Franklin defense and putting the ball past the keeper to give the Celtics a much needed 1-0 victory on Monday, Oct. 9.

“I had a couple of chances in the first half and was disappointed I couldn’t finish them,” Bravo said. “I knew I had to do something for my team. These three points are really going to help us out in the rankings. We knew we had to win.”

Bravo was inspired by former McNary players Gustavo Villalvazo and Bryan Keo, who attended the game and told the team to play the game like it was their last.

“I saw it was a long ball and I just sprinted to it like it was a final,” Bravo said of scoring the goal. “This win means a lot to us.”

The victory came after McNary tied McKay 0-0 on Friday, Oct. 6.

Celtics head coach Miguel Camarena did everything he could to try to break the scoreless streak, moving from three forwards to five in the final 10 minutes against Franklin.

“We risked it in the back,” Camarena said. “We tried to put as many as we could. A couple of times they had a big chance. But for us, we have to win. We went for it and it paid off.”

Miguel Bravo nearly got McNary on the scoreboard in the first two minutes, firing a shot directly at the Franklin keeper. Sebastian Lopez then had to make two saves in the 13th and 14th minutes to keep the game tied.

The Celtics had another opportunity in the 24th minute when a header served up on a cross by Miguel Bravo bounced over the crossbar. Bhavdeep Bains then found Jovanie Bravo on a cross but Franklin’s keeper made a diving save. Michael Reyes put another shot on goal shortly after but McNary went into halftime tied 0-0.

“We create so many opportunities,” Camarena said. “We have some open goals where if you score, the game changes. We have to keep working.”

Franklin forced a foot save by Lopez in the 56th minute. Bains then put a shot on goal in the 74th minute before Jovanie Bravo finally got the Celtics on the scoreboard.

McNary nearly upset undefeated and No. 1 ranked McMinnville on Wednesday, Oct. 4 as a Miguel Bravo penalty kick broke a 0-0 tie in the 68th minute. But the Grizzlies quickly answered with two goals to secure a 2-1 victory.

“We were 12 minutes away from a big upset,” Camarena said.

“My team played better than them for 68 minutes. They did. We created more opportunities than them. But when you play a team like McMinnville, you can’t relax.”

The close loss showed Camarena what the Celtics are capable of with only two games remaining in the regular season—Tuesday, Oct. 17 at North Salem and then a home match agains South Salem on Thursday, Oct. 19.

The Celtics are 39th in the OSAA power rankings and need to get into the top 36 to earn a play-in game.

“If this team plays like it did against McMinnville, it’s going to be difficult for somebody to beat us,” Camarena said. “If we play like we did against Forest Grove (3-0 loss), everybody is going to beat us. We have to make sure that we play our A game every game.”

McNary has allowed just two goals over the last three games since Jose Luis Bravo returned from a knee injury. With Lopez getting two yellow cards against McMinnville, backup keeper Alejando Villarreal got the shutout at McKay,

“He did a fantastic job,” Camarena said. “I’m happy to have two solid goal keepers.”

Celtics ‘dominate’ West Albany

Of the Keizertimes

ALBANY—McNary (5-2) earned a much-needed league win, defeating West Albany 16-8 on Thursday, Oct. 12.

“I think we dominated this game,” Celtics head coach Jeff Auvinen said. “The score doesn’t reflect it at all.”

McNary was less than three minutes away from getting its first shutout of the season as a West Albany receiver got behind the Celtic defense for a 52-yard touchdown with just 2:22 remaining.

“We just had a break down one play and they made a good play,” Auvinen said.

The Bulldogs then converted the two-point try to get within one score. However, McNary junior Noah Bach recovered an onside kick and Junior Walling was able to run out the clock on three runs for 13 yards.

The Celtics got the ball first at West Albany and marched down to the Bulldog 6-yard line. However, an illegal procedure penalty and quarterback sack forced a fourth-and-long and Jacob Jackson missed a 34-yard field goal.

West Albany got into McNary territory but the drive ended when defensive back Jose Solorio intercepted Bulldogs quarterback Nick Fleetwood and the Celtics took over at their own 17.

After three consecutive punts, two by McNary and one from West Albany, the Celtics got on the scoreboard when the Bulldogs fumbled and jumped on the ball in the end zone for a safety.

Facing a third-and-long after a holding penalty, Erik Barker connected with Walling on a wheel route down the McNary sideline for a 19-yard touchdown to put the Celtics on top 9-0 with 7:37 remaining in the first half.

“I was reading the corner to see what he did and threw it where he wasn’t,” Barker said. “Junior was wide open down the sideline.”

Looking to answer, West Albany got to McNary’s 13-yard line. However, a holding penalty and sack by Bach forced a punt. Barker then completed six consecutive passes for 60 yards on the following drive before getting sacked and then throwing an interception with just 16 seconds to go in the first half.

After McNary’s defense forced a quick punt to start the third quarter, Barker completed a 19-yard pass to Jackson to get the Celtics inside the West Albany 15-yard line. On fourth-and-inches from the 4-yard line, Brayden Ebbs gained two yards and Walling finished the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run to extend the lead to 16-0 with 7:11 remaining in the third quarter.

When a penalty gave West Albany starting field position inside McNary’s 30-yard line, Devyn Shurr intercepted an under-thrown ball early in the fourth quarter.

“I think the turnover battle was huge,” Auvinen said. “We won that and we try to win that every game. We’re trying to reinforce that all of the time and the kids are buying into that and the secondary was much more confident today and that’s huge. I think we’ve got great kids back there. We just lost our confidence a little last week. We regained it this week, which allowed us to do what we wanted to.”

McNary’s defense had allowed just 33 yards through the air until the Bulldogs final possession. West Albany rushed for 134 yards, more than half of which came in the first quarter.

“In the first quarter, they were making plays and we weren’t getting off blocks,” Auvinen said. “Then we started getting lower and forced those holds. I think they were holding the whole time but you can’t show the official unless you’re trying to come off that block. I think we played harder that second quarter and forced them to have to do some different things and it helped us quite a bit.

“I was really pleased with the defensive line. I was really pleased with the secondary and the linebackers. All three positions groups were very good tonight. I think the kids are playing hard and having fun and coming together. It’s always easier when you win.”

With two games to go, Oct. 20 at North Medford and Oct. 27 at home versus West Salem, the Celtics are third in the Greater Valley Conference and 16th in the OSAA power rankings.

“I feel like we improved a lot this week and we just need to keep doing that week after week,” McNary senior Jakoby Doke said.

Consultant: Proactive social media plan yields best results for biz

Jeremy Turner talks social media plans with attendees at the Keizer Chamber Luncheon Tuesday, Sept. 10. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

Of the Keizertimes

Jeremy Turner’s message to local businesses using social media at the Keizer Chamber Luncheon Tuesday, Oct. 10, was relatively simple even though it can seem like a Herculean task: have a plan.

“Social media is done reactively and it needs to be proactive. It doesn’t mean you have to be online three hours a day, you have to know when your audience is online,” Turner said.

Turner is a social media consultant and owner of J Turner Solutions. Fortunately, he added, many of the social media platforms provide the tools to target the customers businesses want to reach – if the site managers know where to look.

Turner’s talk focused primarily on Facebook, but touched on other types of social media as well. Within Facebook, the “Insights” page can tell business owners about the demographics of the people who land on the page and the most common times they are there.

“Create a content calender and preset posts to go up at a certain time. Plan your exposure,” Turner said.

Turner suggests content be focused on what a business can do to help prospective customers even before they need services. As an example, he talked about senior care facilities and adults caring for aging parents in their own homes.

“Figure out how you can support those customers now so that when the care needed becomes too great, they know who they can trust,” Turner said.

In another example, he referred to a recent conversation in a local barber shop. He asked the barber how he handles toddlers getting their first trim. The barber said he suggests to parents that they plan to get their hair cut at the same time so that the kids can watch and learn before they have a loud pair of clippers next to their head.

“That could be turned into an ad titled Five tips for first haircuts, and target users with kids age 2 and younger,” Turner said.

Only about 10 percent of content should be direct calls to bring someone into a business, he added.

q“It should be about helping other people rather than promoting yourself and the business,” Turner said.

Given the ever-growing social media landscape, Turner suggested focusing on one or two sites vs. trying to be everywhere at once.

“People follow food carts on Twitter to find out where they are going to be every day,” which makes a Facebook presence less of a necessity, Turner said.

When it comes to online reviews – particularly negative ones – Turner said being proactive is the only way to combat them, “Ask the people you know are going to say ‘yes’ to go out and write good reviews.”

Freebies are also an excellent way to capture direct contact information. One organization he works with offers a free ebook in exchange for the visitors email address.

“Once we have that we can direct them to the other places we want them to go,” he said. “A major thing to remember is not to build your business or brand entirely on someone else’s property.”

No bail for man on 3rd drug arrest

Of the Keizertimes

A Keizer man on probation for drug-related charges for a second time in less than a year was arrested on a third round of drug charges last week.

On Monday, Oct. 2, Clayton Lee Smith, 32, arrived at the Keizer Police Department to turn himself in to his probation officer, Marion County Sheriff Deputy Eric Bandonis, who works out of the Keizer police station. Smith denied officers access to his car, but members of the Community Response Unit (CRU) believed they saw items inside the car that were evidence of narcotics crimes.

After obtaining a search warrant, the vehicle was searched the following day and police found 130 grams of heroin, scales and packaging materials, $3,500 in cash, a pistol and three rifles. One of the rifles was determined to have been stolen.

Smith was charged with delivery of heroin and parole violation. He is being held without bail at the Marion County Correctional Facility.

It was Smith’s fifth arrest on drug charges since May 2016, including two run-ins with Keizer police in the past year.

On Tuesday, June 27, Smith was arrested during a traffic stop by members of the CRU. Investigators suspected Smith had committed several drug offenses.

The traffic stop occurred in the 300 block of Sunset Avenue North while additional officers served a search warrant on Smith’s residence at 3950 5th Avenue N.

During the search of the residence, investigators recovered four long guns, two of which were reported stolen to the Corvallis Police Department, body armor, packaging materials, scales, cash, 80 counterfeit $100 bills, 6.9 grams of cocaine, three grams of methamphetamine, and approximately one gram of heroin. Smith is prohibited by law from possessing body armor because he is a felon who has been previously convicted for a crime involving violence.

Officers also impounded Smith’s 2002 BMW 525i at the scene of the traffic stop after spotting a small plastic bindle, packaging materials cash, a used syringe, and a .45 caliber bullet in plain view. After obtaining a search warrant on the BMW, officers found $5,400 in cash, 123 grams of heroin, 76.1 grams of methamphetamine, packaging materials and a loaded .45 caliber handgun.

Smith was previously arrested on Sept. 28, 2016, when a search warrant was served on the same 5th Avenue address. He faced six counts of drug-related charges at the time, but pleaded guilty to only two – delivery of heroin and possession of methamphetamine. He was sentenced to five years active probation in November 2016.

Smith was charged with delivery of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine, being a felon in possession of a firearm and body armor, and theft in the first degree.

Smith’s next court date has not yet been set.

A moment of unity


After violence pierces U.S. cities and towns, Americans come together. Later politics can drive them apart.

Or not, maybe just this once.

As a grim Monday morning dawned in Las Vegas, Nevada representatives in Congress issued statements that eschewed gun politics. They stuck to themes of sympathy and shared useful information for constituents, such as where they could give blood. President Donald Trump delivered a somber, unifying address to the nation.

Outside Nevada, gun control advocates urged a more political approach, at the risk of appearing opportunistic, or ignorant about guns.

Monday morning Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., jumped on Twitter to say, “To my colleagues: your cowardice to act cannot be whitewashed by thoughts and prayers. None of this ends unless we do something to stop it.”

Murphy also sent out a fund-raising email that directed the indignant to donate—with proceeds going to anti-gun groups and his 2018 re-election campaign. The link later excluded his campaign, but the whiff of opportunism clung to his effort.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tweeted, “The crowd fled at the sound of gunshots. Imagine the deaths if the shooter had a silencer, which the NRA wants to make it easier to get.” (House Republicans were going to vote on a measure to streamline the purchase of gun suppressors last week, but delayed the vote after the mass shooting.)

Thus Clinton displayed the other common foible of gun control advocates—ignorance about firearms. Gun advocates scoffed her suggestion that silencers would have worsened the carnage, a notion which Politifact ruled as false, as silencers reduce a fired shot’s noise a mere 20 percent or less.

On Wednesday all four Nevada Democrats in Congress—Sen. Catherine Cortez-Masto and Reps. Dina Titus, Ruben Kihuen and Jacky Rosen—announced their support of legislation to ban bump stocks, devices designed to increase the firepower of semi-automatic rifles. Authorities found bump stocks on a dozen of the firearms found in shooter Stephen Paddock’s Mandalay Bay hotel suite.

UNLV political science professor John Tuman noted that there’s deep widespread support “in the political culture of Nevada,” but also believes the Democrats were responding to constituents who believe Washington should tighten gun laws.

Nevada GOP Sen. Dean Heller and Rep. Mark Amodei have reason to urge the Trump administration to ban bump stocks administratively. Such an action would spare them from having to cast a vote likely to alienate some of their voters—and to ban a device that the vast majority of gun owners probably never heard of until last week.

Many gun rights advocates believe that lawmakers like Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., sponsor of the Senate bump stock ban, won’t stop with bump stocks. She is after all the author behind the 1994 federal assault weapons ban that lasted for 10 years.

It’s hard to argue against the slippery slope argument. When the NRA shocked Washington with its support for regulations to restrict bump stocks, Sen. Catherine Cortez-Masto said in statement, “The NRA’s announcement is a welcome opening for conversation on additional measures we can take to protect the lives of Americans.”

On the other side of the issue, there’s a general suspicion that broad gun laws don’t work. The Washington Post ran a much-discussed opinion piece last week in which statistician Leah Libresco disclosed how three months of team research on gun deaths crushed her belief that sweeping gun laws work.

“By the time we published our project, I didn’t believe in many of the interventions I’d heard politicians tout,” Libresco wrote. “I was still anti-gun, at least from the point of view of most gun owners, and I don’t want a gun in my home, as I think the risk outweighs the benefits. But I can’t endorse policies whose only selling point is that gun owners hate them.”

Measures which Libresco once considered “common sense reforms” didn’t really work. Good intentions yielded “policies that often seem as if they were drafted by people who have encountered guns only as a figure in a briefing book or an image on the news.”

That is the hurdle supporters of gun restrictions will have to overcome: Would their prescription have stopped shooter Stephen Paddock, who bought his arsenal legally after passing a background check?

Keep in mind the number of guns that already exist in the United States —in 2013 the Pew Foundation cites estimates between 270 million and 320 million.

Asked on Fox News if he would support a measure to ban bump stocks, a frustrated Heller described the Sunday night shooting and responded, “You show me that law that would stop that, not only would I support it, I would be an advocate for that law.”

(Creators Syndicate)

America rises above its grievances


Who is left to defend the simple, often admirable, sometimes disappointing, American experience?

Our politics seems deeply divided between those who think the country is going to hell in a handcart and those who believe the country is going to hell in a handbasket.

Some of the tenured class that sets the intellectual tone of the left concluded long ago that America was built by oppression, is sustained by white privilege and requires the cleansing purity of social revolution (however that is defined). In this story, capitalism accumulates inequities that will eventually lead the rich to eat the poor. The American Dream is an exploitative myth. Change will only come through a coalition of the aggrieved. And those who are not permanently enraged are not paying proper attention.

But, at least on the populist right, the social critique is every bit as harsh. In this story, America has fallen in a boneless heap from a great height. It is unrecognizable to people—mostly white people—who regard mid-20th-century America as a social and economic ideal. The country has been fundamentally altered by multiculturalism and political correctness. It has been ruined by secularism and moral relativism. America, says the Rev. Franklin Graham, is “on the verge of total moral and spiritual collapse.” And those who are not permanently offended are not paying proper attention.

A poll taken last year found that 72 percent of Donald Trump supporters believe American society and its way of life have changed for the worse since the 1950s. And the most pessimistic and discontented lot of all was white, evangelical Protestants. Almost three-quarters believed the last 70 years to be a period of social decline.

Those of us who remember politics in the Reagan era have a mental habit of regarding conservatism as more optimistic about the American experiment and liberalism as more discontented. But representatives of both ideologies—in their most potent and confident versions—are now making fundamental critiques of American society. They are united in their belief that America is dominated by corrupt, self-serving elites. They are united in their call for radical rather than incremental change. While disagreeing deeply about the cause, they see America as careening off course. Little wonder that Americans consistently say their country in on the wrong track by a margin of more than 2-to-1. Disgruntlement is our nation’s common ground.

What group believes that American society has gotten better since the 1950s? About 60 percent of African-Americans and Hispanics. On a moment’s reflection, this makes perfect sense. Compared with 70 years ago, when much of the country was legally segregated, daily life has improved for racial and ethnic minorities. As it has for gays and women seeking positions of social and economic leadership.

Many conservatives have failed to appreciate the mixed legacy of modernity. In recent decades, America has seen declining community and family cohesion and what former U.S. Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy calls “a loneliness epidemic.” “We live in the most technologically connected age in the history of civilization,” he says, “yet rates of loneliness have doubled since the 1980s.”

But the flip side of individualism is greater social freedom. Who would not prefer to be in a racially mixed marriage today compared with 70 years ago? Or to have biracial children? When conservatives express unreserved nostalgia for the 1950s, they are also expressing a damning tolerance for oppression. It does appear like a longing for lost privilege.

The alternative to disdain for American society on the left and right is not to sanitize our country’s history or excuse its manifold failures. It is to do what reforming patriots from Abraham Lincoln to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. have done: to elevate and praise American ideals while courageously applying them to our social inconsistencies and hypocrisies. “What greater form of patriotism is there,” asked President Obama in his admirable 2015 Selma speech, “than the belief that America is not yet finished, that we are strong enough to be self-critical, that each successive generation can look upon our imperfections and decide that it is in our power to remake this nation to more closely align with our highest ideals?”

And this might be matched with a spirit of gratitude—for a country capable of shame and change, and better than its grievances.

(Washington Post Writers Group)

The people can change our gun culture


On Tuesday morning, October 3, the second day after the massacre in Las Vegas, media reported this and that as it does every day.  One piece of information, nevertheless, stood out for me. It was among “story stocks” where the U.S. company, Sturm Ruger, a firearms maker, saw its shares trading higher with investors pondering whether the violence in Las Vegas will lead to greater gun sales. This news about profit-making among firearm makers is sadly repeated time and again after every mass shooting in America and subsequent to the foreboding University of Texas tower shooting in August 1966.

One can interpret this news however he likes; yet, to me, it notifies that more and more of my fellow Americans are getting armed. And that, statistically speaking, means more and more among us, including the mentally ill, those seeking to settle a score, the very-angry-about-something-crowd, will commit an act of violence with use of a firearm.  The bottom line is that this violence problem is not shared to the same degree around the world in democracies like ours.

It is an old and tired story that reminds us that our legislators, in state capitals and Washington, D.C., are too often financially and ideologically beholden to the National Rifle Association (NRA),  Gun Owners of America, firearms makers, gun clubs and their personal interpretation of the Second Amendment cannot put their heads, hearts and, most importantly, the gray matter they possess, to action sufficient to bring this matter of excessive firearms-use-violence under control. Simple adjustments even, like personalizing technology such as fingerprint recognition, could make a big difference.

An experimental psychologist, Steven Pinker of Harvard, argues that people alive today are actually living with less violence than in former times. He sees a world, as we all do, with brutal wars, mindless killings, terrorism and even genocide yet Pinker stands by his position as one who believes we actually appreciate improvement nowadays.  One case study to support his contention was World War II, from September 1, 1939 to September 2, 1945, that resulted in the deaths of an estimated 60 million people.  Meanwhile, events such as the one in Las Vegas could persuade a modern day observer to contend another point of view.

Analysis by Pinker sees motives in the human brain that attract us to violence as well as those motives that inhibit us from violence.  He labels the former motives as inner demons, referring to pure predation or exploitation, drive for dominance, revenge and sadism.  The other side of this paradox he calls the better angels or those motives that pull us away from violence, providing with empathy, self-control, fairness, reason, and rationality.  In our lives, then, it depends on which motives have the upper hand: those inner demons or better angels which govern our decisions and consequent actions.

Why is violence so high in the U.S.?  America was a land of lawlessness for much of the years before the 20th century what with the Revolutionary War, the Indian wars, the conflicts with other nations vying to control North America and the state of anarchy that prevailed just before and for long after the Civil War.  Ordinary Americans often could not count on any government to protect them—such as when the nearest sheriff was 200 miles away—provide an insight to those former times.  Without laws being enforced, Americans made up their own “laws” and decided what constituted justice.  Deciding for oneself what’s right and wrong determines the wild ways a whole lot of Americans behave to this day and  a major reason why we have so many lawless events.

Other democracies, such as Australia and New Zealand, with frontiers to settle not entirely unlike our own, have come together with a common interest to establish and maintain a civilized society.  We could and should do the same but have failed deplorably to date in not doing so. The most obscene and disgusting of violent acts, such as that at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., did not bring reform any more than the more than the 30,000 Americans every year who lose their lives to firearms along with day-in-day-out at least 30 Americans being shot and murdered.

Are we helpless? Have we not proven our mettle so many times in our history and thereby rise to wrestle this issue to a successful win should we set our minds to it. Most American-based surveys show that a clear majority of us want controls on firearms with those controls enforced; so, what’s stopping us from stepping up in a ground swell to demand a safer America where every American no longer wonders whether he will be the next to be shot.

(Gene H. McIntyre lives in Keizer.)