A Relatively Uneventful Seattle May Day: On May 1, the international holiday for workers’ rights, Trump supporters and black bloc protesters gathered at Westlake mall to smoke pot and argue about free speech. As Heidi observed, “The whole thing felt like a self-fulfilling prophecy, each side showing up because they heard the other would be there.” Police ended up making five arrests yesterday evening, compared with nine last year. As far as we could tell, no one threw a Molotov cocktail.
Before we cynically swarmed Westlake with other reporters, waiting for a clash between police and protestors (or Trump supporters and anarchists), we spoke with veterans marching for peace, workers marching for rights, and young people partying against the proposed youth jail. Relive the day's events here.
Smashy Smashy Hits Portland and Olympia: Police declared riots in both cities after protesters broke windows and set shit on fire. Anarchists in both cities threw rocks and other projectiles at law enforcement. Portland's rioters reportedly weaponized Pepsi cans. Police in Olympia made 9 arrests, while Portland authorities arrested 25. Doug Brown, of the Mercury, took this shot:
Jon Grant Calls for Mayor Ed Murray to Step Down: The activist and candidate for City Council Position 8 this morning called for Murray's resignation. Grant makes clear in a statement that he believes Murray "is entitled to due process and should not be tried in the court of public opinion." But attacking accusers based on their criminal histories, which is a big part of Murray's legal strategy, crosses Grant's line for acceptable behavior by a public official:
[Murray]'s actions to publicly attack the character of alleged survivors of abuse only serve to perpetuate rape culture. We live in a society that stacks the deck against survivors of abuse to come out publicly, which perpetuates cycles of abuse and violence. The continued impact of these allegations on our civic culture is toxic. In light of this, I can not remain silent. I am calling on Ed Murray to resign as Seattle’s mayor and address these allegations as a private citizen.
Arts Sales Tax Makes the August Ballot: King County residents in August will vote on whether to approve a .1% sales tax on all "non-essential items" to fund arts and science organizations. The county council voted 7-2 to approve the measure. Rich likes this idea and will shame anyone who argues against it.
City Council Lays the Roadmap For an Income Tax: Council members voted unanimously to set a timeline to consider a city income tax on high-earners. They want a draft ordinance by the end of the month, with the goal of passing the tax by July 10. Who would pay the tax and how much? They're still working that out. Also, income taxes are technically illegal in Washington, so supporters are intent on sending the tax to the state supreme court.
Former Governor Mike Lowry Dies: The Democrat, who pushed for expanding healthcare in Washington, died of complications related to stroke. He was 78. Read the Times' obituary.
Mayor Murray "Pauses" Opening of Little Saigon Homeless Shelter: Neighborhood residents protested after the city announced that it would open a 24/7 homeless shelter in the area. Mayor Murray, in turn, put the opening of the shelter on hold to consult more with the community.
Cyclist Struck by Car Downtown: The hit happened early this morning at Sixth and Jackson. KIRO 7 reports that the victim is seriously injured.
Charleston Officer Who Shot Walter Scott to Plead Guilty: Michael Slager plans to plead guilty today to federal charges related to the fatal shooting of Walter Scott. Slager shot Scott in the back as he was running away from the officer, a moment that was captured on video, prompting protests. He's charged with lying to state investigators, using a firearm in a violent crime and deprivation of rights under the color of law. According to the Charleston Post and Courier, Slager plans to plead guilty this afternoon, although it's still unclear which charge he'll plead to.
Ivanka Trump's Podcast: Never got off the ground.
Otter Turns 19: Skagway the river otter enjoyed a fish and ice cake as he celebrated another year
in captivity of life at the Seattle Aquarium. Here's what an otter eating fish and ice cake looks like: