commented on The ACLU and the Low Income Housing Institute Are Opposed to the Proposed Smoking Ban in Parks
"However all that matters in the end is what we define the intended uses of a public park to be and whether or not cigarette smoke gets in the way."
For the win.
Aren't cigarettes expensive? I'm puzzled how homeless people would be smoking that much. (Not a snark - I really don't get it.)
As someone who cleans who uses (and cleans) one part of Green Lake every single time I go there, I would appreciate the ban because of the cigarette butts. I don't pick them up unless I have a tissue to pick them up. And there are a LOT of them. (But I would also like people who go to the park after hours to quit smashing their liquor/beer bottles as well. That, too, is no fun to pick up.)
commented on New Council Member John Okamoto Sworn In, Calls on Council to Find "Common Interests"
I recall a forum for two ballot initiatives for preschool and child care where I had been asked to be on the panel as the voice in the middle on these two issues. Burgess tried to have me kicked off the panel because "it wasn't right" and he didn't want any third-party voices. He did this as I sat right next to him. I remember thinking,"Tim, you do know I can hear you?"
Tim Burgess as the arbiter for manners and civil discourse in the public arena? He can't even take one person challenging his legislation. I do believe in common courtesy for public officials and I think Sawant should have thought better of her remarks but please - Burgess himself should go look in the mirror before he judges anyone else.
commented on John Oliver Takes On Standardized Tests, Citing Seattle High School Boycott
@8, what @9 said - there is also cherry-picking of who takes the tests in other countries.
"The existence of crushing poverty and fantastic wealth in a society should not be excuses to do nothing about systemic problems that make it harder for kids to learn."
I think I hear the voice of an ed reformer. NO ONE is saying that poor kids can't learn or that we should hit the pause button for public education change. But too many people refuse to acknowledge the effects of poverty on learning. You cannot fix one without the other. All the wraparound services in the world at school will not change what happens at home.
commented on Tom Rasmussen Wants to Enshrine NIMBYism on His Way Out
I think neighborhoods should have some say/control over what goes up in their neighborhoods. That said, it appears this plan is just overkill. You cannot have complete non-professionals making these kinds of decisions.
Isn't there a middle ground for how neighborhoods look and expand? (Preferably one that does not involve Roger Valdez).
commented on John Oliver Takes on Standardized Tests, Citing Seattle High School Boycott
@1 if you are keeping up on the whole picture of public education, here's what to consider. Many other countries are nowhere near as diverse either racially or socio-economically. If you put our high scores against other nations scores, we do well. But when nearly 23% of American kids live in poverty, it has an effect.
As well, since the international test began, the U.S. has consistently scored in the middle. And remember, we got a man to the moon. First. With public education.
Our public education system is not in crisis. It doesn't mean things are great but we're certainly not failing.
commented on Last Night's District 4 City Council Forum Did Not Go Well for Jean Godden
Godden seemed off and not tracking what was being said. She was also quite the cheerleader for Murray. It was very disappointing. As for this:
"..turning a dilapidated slumlord-owned property near Roosevelt High School into a park, Godden refused to answer."
It was pretty astonishing to see her not answer questions about this issue as she stood - right next to the Mayor - at the announcement at the site. I was there. So now she acts like it didn't happen?