Where the Best News Goes to See and Be Seen
• Mark your calendars! SlutWalk Seattle 2012, the second annual walk that protests slut-shaming, blaming victims of rape for their attacks, and the broad rainbow of other ways society routinely marginalizes women, will commence on Sunday, September 9, at high noon in Pioneer Square's Occidental Park. Bring your rage and comfortable walking shoes.
• Seattlepi.com columnist Joel Connelly had this frank message for politicos last week: "Out on vacation until August 26," read his automated e-mail response. "While I'm gone, a message to NRCC, DSCC, State Democrats, Americans United for Change. Please improve in grinding, negative boilerplate press releases you send me."
• On August 23, the Drug Enforcement Administration told 23 local medical marijuana dispensaries that they have one month to relocate outside of school zones or face federal raids, according to a letter sent by DEA agent Matthew Barnes. But attorney Kurt Boehl, who supports medical pot, says the letters should come as no surprise: Feds have long enforced rules that enhance penalties for drug distribution within 1,000 feet of schools. In Seattle, he says, "There were some people who were pushing the envelope."
• This explains something about The Stranger newsroom: Smoking acres of weed as a teenager will basically make you dumb forever, suggests a new study jointly released this week by researchers in the US and New Zealand. Of 1,000 people studied over 25 years, those who reported regularly smoking pot before turning 18 exhibited, on average, an eight-point IQ drop.
• Laura Lockard, spokeswoman for the Seattle City Council, has taken a communications job at the Woodland Park Zoo. The council can now look forward to improved public relations.
• How bad is the situation for Latino voters in Eastern Washington? Seattle attorney David A. Perez pointed out in a recent Slog op-ed that in Yakima, "although Latinos constitute 41 percent of the city's population, a Latino has never been elected to the city council. Not even once." The main reason is that council members are elected at large rather than by districts, which dilutes the power of the Latino vote. On August 22, the ACLU of Washington announced it is filing suit in federal court, trying to use the Voting Rights Act to push Yakima toward a district elections system. Stay tuned.
• As part of the city's federal settlement to reform the police department, Mayor Mike McGinn has made three appointments: Glenn Harris from the city's Office for Civil Rights will oversee the new police commission, Connie Rice from LA will help pick an oversight monitor who reports to a judge, and Kathryn Olson will be reappointed as head of the police disciplinary office.