Trump Is Trying to Cut Arts Funding. But Are You Really Surprised?

This is a city that loves its public media. Nearly every cab driver around town seems to listen to All Things Considered on repeat, and in addition to KUOW and KEXP, we also have KNKX, the newly independent radio station that plays bird songs every morning, classical music station KING, and public television station KCTS 9. But last weekend, The New York Times reported that failed steak salesman and current US president Donald Trump—a man with less political experience than a high school class president—had drafted a “hit list” of programs to defund, including Americorps, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), which distributes federal funds to over 1,400 locally-owned public radio and television stations across the U.S.

That’s right, folks: He’s coming for our tote-bags.

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Live: We're Outside GOP Rep. Dave Reichert's Office, Where Hundreds of his Constituents Are Rallying to be Heard

We're outside of GOP Congressman Dave Reichert's office, where hundreds of constituents are participating in a "Hear Our Voice" rally. The demonstration is inspired partly by Reichert's refusal to host a town hall for the people he represents. Follow along here:

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The Long Shadow of Lynching in 2017

Waning runs through March 1 at Annex Theatre. White audience members are encouraged to bring a friend of color.
Waning runs through March 1 at Annex Theatre. White audience members are encouraged to bring a friend of color. Annex Theater

Seattle playwright, actor, and dancer Kamaria Hallums-Harris didn't know what she was going to write for her senior thesis project at Cornish College of the Arts. But when George Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin, her mission clarified.

As the Zimmerman case unfolded on the news, she began to wonder whether black women were being killed by police as often and for the same reasons that black men were. Her queries led her to the history of lynching.

She found the story of Mary Turner, who, in 1918, was hanged by her ankles, set on fire, and riddled with bullets. Seeing that Turner was eight months pregnant at the time, a member of the white mob that strung her up cut the unborn baby from her womb and stomped on it. She also found the story of Laura Nelson, who was raped and hanged from a bridge. The baby she was carrying reportedly survived the murder.

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21 Mardi Gras 2017 Events In Seattle

Celebrate Brazilian Carnaval with music and dancing at the Crocodile or the Royal Room.
Celebrate Brazilian Carnaval with music and dancing at the Crocodile or the Royal Room. StockPhotosArt /

Mardi Gras is Tuesday, February 28, and there are lots of opportunities to let the good times roll in the coming days—from a Cajun tasting menu at Tilth to free New Orleans-style music at the Triple Door and the Royal Room to giant dance parties a 5K race with plenty of beads to help you prepare for all the food you're going to eat on Tuesday. See all of your options below, or on our Mardi Gras calendar.

recommended Get all this and more on the free Stranger Things To Do mobile app—available now on the App Store and Google Play. recommended

1. Mardi Gras Tasting Menu
For Mardi Gras, Maria Hines's local-focused restaurant Tilth will serve a special eight-course, New Orleans-style menu featuring boudin (blood sausage) croquettes with creole mustard and remoulade, shrimp and grits with andouille, red beet risotto, and blackened venison with broccolini, and Theo chocolate ganache. Try them with other dishes for a cheaper-than-usual $80 ($100 with wine pairings). Of course, there will also be Cajun music, beads, and masks.

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Governor Jay Inslee Issues Executive Order Blocking State from Participating in Federal Immigration Raids, Religious Registry

If [the White House] thinks theyre going to jerk away the states Medicaid money because we wont become mini-ICE agents, theyre wrong, Inslee said.
"If [the White House] thinks they're going to jerk away the state's Medicaid money because we won't become mini-ICE agents, they're wrong," Inslee said. TVW

After four weeks of chaotic, rapid-fire executive orders from the Trump administration that attempt to ban immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries and could deport millions of undocumented immigrants living in the US, Washington governor Jay Inslee has issued an executive order of his own: one that expressly prohibits state agencies from inquiring about a person's immigration status, participating in federal immigration raids, or aiding in the creation of a religious registry.

At a morning press conference in Olympia, Inslee announced that Washington "will not be a willing participant in mean-spirited policies that break up families and compromise our national security, and most importantly our community safety."

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George Saunders' Lincoln in the Bardo Is the First Essential Novel of the Donald Trump Era


We're only a month in, and already Donald Trump's presidency seems like something George Saunders would concoct: a regressive, hyper-capitalist fever dream in which language is hilariously corrupted, fairness is thrown out the window, and the foundational tenets of civil society start to give way. As in Trump's America, so in a Saunders story: Everything seems absurd until it breaks your heart.

Now, after years of success writing short fiction and essays, Saunders has written his first novel, Lincoln in the Bardo. No one wants their highly anticipated novel to debut just as a bunch of revanchist goblins are rearranging the furniture in the Oval Office, and it is unfair to freight a single book with a bunch of political and existential baggage. But Lincoln is about facing grief (something of a daily exercise for many of us) and is set during a moment of national schism. For those and many other reasons, it is the first essential novel of the Donald Trump era.

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Hey, Dave Reichert: Look at All of These Town Halls Where No One Is Getting Hurt

This could be us, Reichert, but youre scared.
"This could be us but you're scared," says 400 of Reichert's constituents who hosted an empty chair town hall in Cashmere, WA on Monday. Michael Nash

In a little sit 'n' chat interview with KIRO, Congressman Dave Reichert (R-8) finally responded to a local reporter's request for comment on his failure to do his job and host a public meeting for his constituents—*despite the fact that he had done so back in 2009*—by saying "times have changed." KIRO goes on to summarize the representative's views: "Rep. Reichert fears a peaceful gathering won't stay peaceful."

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Shabazz Palaces, Flying Lotus, Alunageorge, Snarky Puppy to Headline Paul Allen's Upstream Music Festival + Summit

Upstream Music Fest + Summit

Upstream Music Fest and Summit, the latest cultural offering from Seattle's favorite billionaire Paul Allen, has announced its inaugural lineup—and it’s looking like the vast majority of bands are, as promised, Seattle-and-NW-centric.

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America's Next Top Model Recap: Run! It's The Acting Bug!

All the worlds a stage, and all the models are merely playas.
All the world's a stage, and all the models are merely playaaaas.

Acting! It's easy. All you have to do is cry, right? Well, Episode 12, And Action, teaches us that acting is actually, like, a lot more than crying and being pretty. Acting is about pulling painful, traumatic memories from the back parts of your brain and serving them up to a small audience of producers and editors who will then pimp your problems to the world for cash money. At least, that's what I got from this week's episode.

The girls are acutely aware the show's down to the top five, but (to keep with the theme of this season) most manage to miss the mark. India, Courtney, and Cody shoot for best photo by overacting. ("Acting is a passion of mine... I have buckets and buckets of memories with a lot of hard emotions attached to them." —Courtney) And Cory Anne and Tatiana go for the more understated, nonexistent type of acting. ("Acting, I suck at. Straight up." —Tatiana) Fortunately, Rita Ora, who apparently has the "acting bug" after filming her 50 Shades of Grey trilogy, brings in a scary acting coach to teach the girls a fucked up, outdated, manipulative style of acting. (BTW, Ora, if you caught something on the 50 Shades set, you should prolly get that checked out by a doctor.)

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The Morning News: Now's the Time to Stand Up for Trans Students in Washington State.

Anti-trans activists are targeting Washington students like Myles Peña, pictured above. Come to a rally in Tacoma this Saturday to support of trans students.
Anti-trans activists are targeting Washington students like Myles Peña, pictured above. Come to a rally in Tacoma this Saturday to support trans students and their families. SB

Washington Lawmakers Slam Trump's Attack on Trans Students: Yesterday, the Trump administration announced it would be revoking an anti-discrimination guidance from the Department of Education that protects transgender students. This action directly contradicts statements Trump made during his campaign, but that doesn't seem to matter much to someone who has so little self control that his aides are constantly scrambling to limit the president's access to Twitter. Seattle mayor Ed Murray named the Trump administration's move for what it was: bullying that specifically targets school kids. Meanwhile, Washington governor Jay Inslee promised, "Washington state will continue to be a place where all children can feel safe from discrimination, harassment or assault based on their gender identity." In a statement, Inslee cited Washington State's 10-year-old human rights law as a safeguard against the Trump administration's anti-trans agenda.

But Washington Evangelicals Are Trying to Repeal the State Law That Protects Trans People: And in a new ballot initiative that's already started a signature gathering drive, Just Want Privacy wants trans grade school students kept out of gender-segregated school bathrooms. The proposed ballot initiative (I-1552)—which failed last year, but this year has a much earlier start—would also allow people to sue public schools where trans students can use the bathrooms in which they feel safe.

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Trump Scraps Protections for Trans Students


President Trump on Wednesday rescinded protections for transgender students that had allowed them to use bathrooms corresponding with their gender identity, overruling his own education secretary and placing his administration firmly in the middle of the culture wars that many Republicans have tried to leave behind. In a joint letter, the top civil rights officials from the Justice Department and the Education Department rejected the Obama administration’s position that nondiscrimination laws require schools to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms of their choice....

The question of how to address the “bathroom debate,” as it has become known, opened a rift inside the Trump administration, pitting Education Secretary Betsy DeVos against Attorney General Jeff Sessions... Mr. Sessions, who has opposed expanding gay, lesbian and transgender rights, pushed Ms. DeVos to relent. After getting nowhere, he took his objections to the White House because he could not go forward without her consent. Mr. Trump sided with his attorney general, the Republicans said, and told Ms. DeVos in a meeting in the Oval Office on Tuesday that he wanted her to drop her opposition. And Ms. DeVos, faced with the alternative of resigning or defying the president, agreed to go along.

Trump at the RNC:

“As president, I will do everything in my power to protect LGBTQ citizens from the violence and oppression of a hateful foreign ideology.”

He didn't say anything about protecting LGBTQ citizens from hateful domestic ideologies, as Barney Frank pointed out after the Republican convention:

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Blabbermouth Podcast: Trump's Immigration Crackdown, Milo's Death Spiral, and Voices from the #ResistanceRecess

It was a dark week for liberty.
Episode 89 talks about the potential upcoming mass deportation of undocumented immigrants, Milo Yiannopoulos's bitter end/beginning, and constituents speaking up at town halls across the country. It was a dark week for liberty with a few bright spots. cmart7327 | Getty

On Tuesday, the Department of Homeland Security released two memos that empower immigration officers with the authority to deport many more undocumented immigrants much more quickly than they could during the Obama administration. Eli Sanders is out on vacation, so Rich Smith and Sydney Brownstone dive back into the case of Daniel Ramirez, a DREAMer who was recently arrested in Seattle. Many more people may find themselves in his situation soon.

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Free Will Astrology: For the Week of February 22


PISCES (Feb 19–March 20): What would your best mother do in a situation like this? Please note that I'm not asking, "What would your mother do?" I'm not suggesting you call on the counsel of your actual mother. When I use the term "your best mother," I'm referring to the archetype of your perfect mother. Imagine a wise older woman who understands you telepathically, loves you unconditionally, and wants you to live your life according to your own inner necessity, not hers or anyone else's. Visualize her. Call on her. Seek her blessings.

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Films for the Trump Era: The Running Man

2017! Another number.
2017! Another number... The Running Man

The Running Man was made in 1987 and is set in 2017. And how did this second-rate science-fiction movie picture the way things would be in the time we are now in? How does The Running Man's 2017 compare with the actual 2017? For starters, the world economy in the film has collapsed, and food, natural resources, and oil are in short supply. In reality, scarcity in 2017 is not at all a problem, but oversupply definitely is, which is why oil prices keep falling and deflation (rather than inflation) is the more persistent and pernicious economic problem. Indeed, the scarcities that produce poverty in our times are not natural (the base), but the consequence of laws and their enforcement (the superstructure).

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New Seattle Eats: Dunbar Room at Hotel Sorrento Presents Brunch With Live Jazz

A bagel with smoked steelhead trout.
A bagel with smoked steelhead trout. Dunbar Room

Unlike every other writer that reports on this brunch, I refuse to make the obligatory jazz puns. The brunch has live jazz, yes, but if you can't resist calling it "jazzy" or saying they've "jazzed up" brunch, do us all a favor and throw your laptop off a bridge.

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