In this episode of Us As We Are, we once again attend a protest in the Ashland Downtown Plaza. This time, citizens gathered together to express their disapproval of the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the recently increased violence.
In this episode of UAWA, we attend a worker's solidarity rally held by Housing Now in recognition of international labor day, which is traditionally the 1st of May. While there, we got to talk to an array of interesting and friendly individuals who shared with us their beliefs about socialism, worker's rights, and the housing situation in Southern Oregon.
In this episode, we travel to the Jackson County Expo, where FEMA and the US DOD have constructed a temporary COVID-19 vaccine drive-through clinic. We're given a tour by a group of very forthcoming FEMA and Navy representatives who show us the different stages patients go through to receive vaccines, and then Keegan goes through the process himself.
In this episode, we attend a Downtown Ashland rally held in support of the City Council's Racial and Social Equity Commission, which seeks to create a forum for members of Ashland's diverse BIPOC, AAPI and LGBTQ communities. We talk to a wide range of individuals who supported the creation of the commission, including Ashland Mayor Julie Akins and City Councilor Gina DuQuenne. The commission was approved at the April 20th, 2021 City Council Business Meeting.
In this episode, we talk with members of Medford's homeless population on the subject of the city's new anti-camping ordinance, which seeks to ban all forms of tent camping within city limits as well as ban camping outright on the Greenway during the summer fire season. In addition to these new rules being more strict than what Medford has had on the books until now, the punishments for violators are more extreme. Naturally, this means the new ordinance is highly controversial. In this outing, we'll hear from the homeless themselves, as well as volunteers working in aid efforts, about how the ordinance might affect life in the city and surrounding area.
In this episode of Us As We Are, we take a step back from the more serious topics and meet with Peter Finkle, who runs the local history guide website walkashland.com. Over the course of a morning, Peter takes us on a tour of Ashland's painted utility boxes, which can be found scattered all around downtown and the Railroad District. As we go, Peter also points out and tells the stories of a few historic buildings, such as the massive swimming pool complex which used to sit where the Ashland Food Co-op is now located.
In this extended episode of Us As We Are, we attend Ashland's most recent anti-mask/anti-COVID protest. Things started out pretty tense, with a skirmish breaking out between a protester and a counter-protester, followed by the same protester attempting to prevent us from filming the story. Once things calm down, we talk to a wide range of individuals who have doubts about the seriousness of COVID and the safety of vaccines. We also talk to one of the counter-protesters in attendance, who explains the alleged connection between the local anti-mask movement and known neo-Nazis like Michael "Biome" Erickson. The evidence behind this claim can be found in the links included below. Most of the anti-mask protesters, when asked, deny holding any Nazi ideology, though some do acknowledge the Nazi fringe which exists within the group. Altogether, this was one of the most interesting events to cover in 2021 thus far.
In this episode of US AS WE ARE, we catch up with the participants in Ashland's Housing Now/Free-Sleep movement. First, we talk to Mike Jones, a new addition to the cast of characters demonstrating for the right to sleep. Afterwards, a few days later, we catch up with Joseph Gibson, who has been sleeping publicly as an act of protest for the last few months and has appeared in several of our previous videos.
In this episode of US AS WE ARE, we once again rendezvous with Mmmingpha, who for the third night in a row held a vigil in support of racial justice and for remembrance of those who lost their lives due to racial violence. He is accompanied by other members of the Ashland BIPOC community. The following day, we have a sit-down discussion with Mmmingpha where he reveals he will be moving back to the east coast in a few weeks, and we reflect on the events surrounding his presence in Ashland.
In this episode of US AS WE ARE, we go to our favorite interviewing location, Lithia Park, to converse with locals and passers-by about where they get their news. Whether we're conscious of it or not, the media we take in is a huge part of how we form our worldview, so the question of where we source it is important. Towards the end of the video, we explore the results of some online polls we ran exploring the same questions.
KEEGAN VAN HOOK
producer, host, editor manager
producer, first camera, creative assistant, editor
producer, writer, researcher, host/personality
second camera, production assistant, editor