Homeland Insecurity

Ian Spiers, the mixed-race Ballard shutterbug that Homeland Security agents detained in April for snapping pictures of boats at the Hiram M. Chittenden locks ["Taking Pictures While Brown," July 15], faced off with Homeland Security again last week. This time, however, the meeting was on Spiers' terms: On December 2, joined by his ACLU attorney, Spiers got a chance to question Joseph Maher, a lawyer with HS's Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties. "The biggest question I've had has been whether or not I'm on a government list or in a database now," Spiers says. According to Spiers, Maher was a nice guy, but didn't have many answers. He took plenty of notes, and may file an official report on Spiers' ordeal. AMY JENNIGES


Christian Insecurity

Residents in West Seattle's Pigeon Point neighborhood are taking their case to the Federal Communications Commission. It's not Desperate Housewives star Nicolette Sheridan's missing towel that's got Pigeon Point hot and bothered, though. Quite the opposite: The neighbors are fed up with Disney Radio KKDZ 1250 AM and Sacred Heart Radio KBLE 1050 AM, a local religious station that features shows like "Holy Spirit at Work."

And it isn't the "moral values" POV that's bugging the West Seattleites. It's the stations' signals, which broadcast from a nearby radio tower on 21st Avenue Southwest, blaring into neighbors phone lines and baby monitors. The static has also been known to disable Internet connections and fax machines. "I have a speaker-phone in my home office," says local Pete Spalding, 52, president of the neighborhood council. "I turn it on, and it's just like turning on the radio. And a minister comes on and tells me I'm going to Hell."

This fall, readying a formal complaint to the FCC on behalf of Pigeon Point, Spalding collected more than 100 signatures from his understandably irritated neighbors. NANCY DREW


Capitol Hill Insecurity

Downtown-style "Safety Ambassadors" may be a fixture on Capitol Hill next summer. The private security staff, who've patrolled downtown since 2000, give tourists directions, report graffiti, and, controversially, drive the homeless away from businesses.

Property owners throughout Capitol Hill want the same services. They're currently collecting signatures to establish a Capitol Hill Improvement District--just like downtown's--which will squeeze $605,000 a year out of property owners to pay for cleaning and security staff, if the city council gives its stamp of approval. AMY JENNIGES

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