We Are Killing the World

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Fishing gear and an engine cover are just some of the startling contents found inside the stomachs of sperm whales that recently beached themselves on Germany’s North Sea coast. The 13 sperm whales washed up near the German state of Schleswig-Holstein earlier this year, the latest in a series of whale strandings around the North Sea. So far, more than 30 sperm whales have been found beached since the start of the year in the U.K., the Netherlands, France, Denmark, and Germany. After a necropsy of the whales in Germany, researchers found that four of the giant marine animals had large amounts of plastic waste in their stomachs.

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The Morning News: GOP Senators Unveil Secret Health Care Bill, Seattle Police Guild Wants More Money for Officers Wearing Bodycams

As Rich put it the other day: These mother fuckers are effectively trying to sentence millions of people to death.
As Rich put it the other day: "These mother fuckers are effectively trying to sentence millions of people to death." MARK WILSON / GETTY

U.S. Senate Republicans Release Trumpcare Bill to Gut the Affordable Care Act, Doubling Down on GOP House Proposal: The lawmakers want to "create a new system of federal tax credits to help people buy health insurance, while offering states the ability to drop many of the benefits required by the Affordable Care Act, like maternity care, emergency services and mental health treatment," the New York Times reports. Planned Parenthood would also be defunded.

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Honeymoon Tips for LGBTQ Folks

South Africa

More and more people these days are recognizing (albeit belatedly) that marriage isn’t just for straight cisgender people, but this leads to another pressing issue: queer honeymoons! And while, unfortunately, there are still a number of places in the world that are still actively hostile to LGBTQ couples, the planning should really be a lot more fun than just “probably let’s not go to Russia.”

Like many people, I myself have been on but one single honeymoon, so once again I called in an expert. Jacob Marek is the founder of IntroverTravels, and he specializes in custom-designed getaways for people who want something other than sugary cocktails on a crowded beach—with a particular focus on queer travelers. He’s also, of course, a seasoned traveler himself, with a wealth of experience to draw from. Here are his top queer-honeymoon-destination recommendations:


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The Pride Flag at Harborview Is Not a "Subversive" Act

We got a tip about this flag.
We got a tip about this flag.

A reader emailed us a few nights ago to say:

Noticed a larger than life "gay pride" flag flying just below the even larger than life American flag at Harborview hospital today (June 20). Seems fitting in this gay pride month, but I couldn't help wondering how this came to be and whether it was officially sanctioned or an act of subterfuge. I wish I had a camera!

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Free Will Astrology: For the Week of June 21

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ARIES (March 21–April 19): There are places in the oceans where the sea floor cracks open and spreads apart from volcanic activity. This allows geothermally heated water to vent out from deep inside the earth. Scientists explored such a place in the otherwise frigid waters around Antarctica. They were elated to find a "riot of life" living there, including previously unknown species of crabs, sea stars, sea anemones, and barnacles. Judging from the astrological omens, Aries, I suspect that you will soon enjoy a metaphorically comparable eruption of warm vitality from the unfathomable depths. Will you welcome and make use of these raw blessings even if they are unfamiliar and odd?

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Is the Supervolcano In Yellowstone Park About to Explode?

Castle Geyser erupting in Yellowstone.
Castle Geyser erupting in Yellowstone. Riishede/Getty

Newsweek has reported that more than 400 earthquakes have been recorded in and around Yellowstone Park since June 12. The last one (a magnitude three earthquake) occurred this Monday, June 19. The reason why you should lose sleep over these seismic events is Yellowstone Park is a supervolcano. This fact confirmed in the middle of the last century by NASA with a high-altitude camera: the whole park is a volcanic crater. The wonderful geysers, the bubbling of otherwordly mud, and the hot springs beloved by tourists are caused by molten rock below the park.

The last time this volcano exploded was two million years ago. Bill Bryson described the event in his book A Short History of Nearly Everything:

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Our Comprehensive Summer 2017 Calendar of Outside Events is Here!

Summer in Seattle means water, occasional sunshine, and opportunities to take advantage of both things—like at the Wooden Boat Festival.
Summer in Seattle means water, occasional sunshine, and opportunities to take advantage of both—like at the Wooden Boat Festival. Boatblis.S./Flickr

The summer solstice happened yesterday, which means it's now officially summer! To celebrate, we're kicking off our huge, fully comprehensive outside calendar, which contains every outdoor event happening this summer (until Labor Day) that you could ever need to know about. We've got every outdoor concert, movie in the park, festival, art event, performance, food event, and sports game, as well as everything happening for Seafair and Fourth of July. There are nearly 400 events in the calendar now, and we'll keep it updated as summer goes on, so make sure to check back frequently for more ways to enjoy Seattle's (sometimes) glorious summer weather.


The Blabbermouth Podcast: Al Franken Discusses the Shift from SNL to the Senate, and Congressional Balancing Tactics

Senator Al Franken: Fighting the system one numbskull at a time.
Senator Al Franken: Fighting the system one numbskull at a time. COURTESY HACHETTE BOOK GROUP

Al Franken is on Blabbermouth this week, talking with Eli Sanders about his journey from Saturday Night Live to the US Senate. The Senator also shares the best tactics for getting a member of congress to do what you want (like, say, not repeal Obamacare) and answers both an urgent “millennial” question from Rich Smith and a future-focused, “barely-a-boomer” question from Dan Savage.

Also: Dan, Rich, and Eli talk about the sad defeat of Jon Ossoff in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District and what it means for Democratic strategery going forward.

Plus...

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Mayor Ed Murray Still Isn't Ruling Out a Write-In Campaign

I guess weve got to keep talking about this.
I guess we've got to keep talking about this. Kelly O

Mayor Ed Murray is seriously entertaining the idea of running a write-in campaign for re-election, six weeks after dropping his re-election bid in the midst of allegations that he sexually abused teenagers while he was in his 30s.

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How Seattle Could Make It Easier for People with Criminal Records to Get Housing

Housing in Seattle is out of reach for many with prior criminal convictions.
Housing in Seattle is out of reach for many with prior criminal convictions. William Andrew/Getty

Landlords should not be able to refuse potential renters only because they have a criminal record, Seattle city leaders say, and in coming months they'll pursue legislation to stop the practice.

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My First Time Getting Peed On: A Comic


NewsRace

Photos from the Rally for Charleena Lyles

Ill never see my sister again,” Lyles’ younger sister, Tiffany Rodgers told the crowd, crying. “Her kids will never see her again… I just want to grieve right now. I can’t even do that because I’m so angry. Im scared of our so-called protectors. I was before, but I definitely am now.
"I'll never see my sister again,” Lyles’ younger sister, Tiffany Rodgers told the crowd, crying. “Her kids will never see her again… I just want to grieve right now. I can’t even do that because I’m so angry. I'm scared of our so-called protectors. I was before, but I definitely am now." Nate Gowdy

Hundreds of community members gathered at the Brettler Family Place housing complex in Laurelhurst on Tuesday for a rally to demand justice for Charleena Lyles, a pregnant mother of four who was fatally shot by Seattle Police officers after reporting a burglary on June 18. Prompted by Lyles' family after a series of speeches, rally attendees marched for four miles to Husky Stadium, where they were met with police.

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Drunk Man Eaten Alive By a Pack of Dogs

This is a free stock photo of a dog. If you want to see the real video, well...
This is a free stock photo of a dog. If you want to see the real video, well...

He was walking home on a dusty road. He was drunk and had a beer bottle in his hand. After walking over a muddy puddle that reflected the leaves of the trees and the cloudy and dusky sky, a pack of stray dogs attacked him. They came at him from every direction. They pulled him down, he rose up and stumbled about. They pulled him down again, and he managed to rise up again. They pulled him down a third and last time. He was eaten alive in two minutes. The incident, which happened in Sovetsky, a town in central Russia, was caught on CCTV. I watched this video several times after learning of Jon Ossoff’s loss in the special election in Georgia’s sixth district.


Will Jody Hall Conquer Cannabis Like She Did with Cupcakes and Coffee?

She’s here, she’s queer, and she’s an edibles pioneer.
She’s here, she’s queer, and she’s an edibles pioneer. Lester Black

Jody Hall does business like a Wild West settler: For two decades, she's been setting up shop not where the customers are but where the customers will be. She worked at Starbucks in the early 1990s, when most Americans couldn't pronounce "latte" and the chain had 30 stores. Then she created Cupcake Royale in 2003, before people could imagine spending $4 on a small cake.

Cupcake Royale now has six locations and sells cakes to Metropolitan Market and Alaska Airlines. You know what happened to Starbucks.

Now she's in the middle of Washington's weed industry, running her own edibles company called Goodship. She's betting that in a market where pot is getting cheaper every month, consumers will pay extra for her made-from-scratch confections.

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My First Time Raising a Girl-Crazy Middle-School Baby Dyke

Shawna and Beezus Murphy
Shawna and Beezus Murphy

My first time is now.

Even when she was a baby, she was cool. We named her Beezus Bedelia. She was wild. She was smart and she was funny. She was always the kind of kid who would say anything, do anything, talk to anyone. No fear. No shame. I remember her first time getting her photo taken with Santa at 2 1/2, and she just sashayed right up to him and remarked, "Santa, you work at Nordstrom," in a devilish drawl. Or at 3, when she got up to tell a joke on the microphone at a burlesque circus show. "What time is it when an elephant sits on your fence?" "Time to get a new fence."

I never questioned this coolness. It was always one of my favorite qualities, especially how she never acted stupid around boys or men. I attributed this to her next-level status, until I finally realized that this was because she did sometimes act very stupid around women and girls.

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Savage Love Letter of the Day: Mother Tries Her Best Not to Beat Up Jerks Who Make Fun of Her Kid

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I’m a queer mother to a very liberal, accepting family but I’m freaking out a bit and I need your help.

My child, let’s call them Sweetie, is a 7-year-old (assigned male at birth) who has always loved sparkles, rainbows, high heels and all things femme. Sweetie has been insisting for about a year that they’re not a boy, and just last week told me and their siblings that they’re a girl.

This is not the problem. We all love Sweetie and accept them for who they are, want them to be happy and fully themselves, and will support them in all ways we can. We have always allowed the kids to wear whatever they like, and play with whichever toys they like. The grandparents are all on board with this and won’t have a problem if Sweetie turns out to be a girl in the long run.

The problem is that we live in a tiny village in very rural, conservative Britain. While not as bad as rural Texas, trans kids are not well understood here and we haven’t got any LGBT support groups within a couple of hours drive.

Sweetie is a sensitive, caring kid who won’t even stand up to their siblings in a fight. I’m really, really worried about how they’re going to cope with the unavoidable backlash they’re going to face from peers and, sadly, other adults in our community. We have already had a few incidents of kids calling Sweetie names for wearing a skirt and a lot of older adults pointing, staring and whispering.

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