The 34th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Rally Happens Today: It starts at Garfield High School at 9:30 a.m. and will include workshops, a rally, a march to downtown Seattle, and a job fair. Organizers say they want to “shine a spotlight on the ongoing abuses of the Seattle Police Department” toward Black Lives Matter protesters, citing the unprovoked pepper-spraying last year of teacher and organizer Jesse Hagopian. (The officer involved was only given an oral reprimand.) We’ll be reporting the day’s events on Slog, so stay tuned.
Here's What Else Is Happening on MLK Day: Concerts, film screenings, art, and more.
Closing the Achievement Gap for Black Male Students in Seattle: A think tank hired by the Seattle school district has recommended that officials devote an entire office to helping young Black male students—who are “consistently at the bottom when it comes to academic achievement, and high on the list of suspensions and dropout rates,” reports the Seattle Times. District officials, supporters, and students say the disparity is due to lack of support and teachers “who don’t understand them.”
SeaTac Workers on Strike Today: Some baggage handlers and ramp workers are on strike till 4 p.m., demanding $15 an hour.
Chinese Investors See Seattle Area As Financial “Safe Haven”: The largest foreign purchasers of US real estate are the Chinese, and 8 percent of those investors are buying in Washington state, reports the Seattle Times. Who are these buyers? According to the Times:
Some are wealthy or middle-class families seeking to immigrate here, students (or parents of students) from affluent families attending local colleges, and business owners or entrepreneurs.
Others include those who own multiple homes in several countries and aren’t interested in immigrating to the U.S., investors seeking capital returns and a growing number of Chinese who’ve already immigrated to Canada and are now seeking opportunities in the U.S., Jones said.
Seahawks Won’t Play in Super Bowl 2016: Because they lost yesterday to the Carolina Panthers, 31-24.
Speaking of Football, State Lawmakers Want to Regulate Fantasy Sports: Citing the lack of regulations—more than one million people last year played some type of fantasy sports in Washington state, which is illegal—lawmakers are proposing several different ideas, from full legalization to prohibition and stricter penalties, such as making advertisements for fantasy sports a class C felony.
Shellfish Farmers Renew Efforts to Spray Neurotoxic Pesticide: Local farmers want to control the burrowing shrimp population that they say threatens oyster beds, although there are concerns that the pesticide imidacloprid may harm bees and aquatic life.
The Fourth Democratic Debate Was Held Last Night: And compared to the GOP bloodbath the other night, Matt Baume said there was actual discussion of real issues such as police abuse, climate change, gun control, and campaign finance reform. Hillary Clinton also used stronger language attacking Bernie Sanders, who was on the offense, and tried to align herself with President Obama.
Walmart Is Closing 154 Stores in the United States: For a total of 269 stores worldwide.