To those who celebrate: I don’t smoke weed, but I am a devoted ally, so please allow me to be the first to wish you a very merry 4/20. I would give you recommendations for what to smoke or otherwise ingest on this day of celebration, but marijuana makes me think my brain is overheating like an old Macbook trying to boot up Sims 3. One thing I CAN recommend is getting your butt to the Egyptian tomorrow night at 8 pm for SPLIFF, The Stranger’s annual film festival by stoners for stoners. Click here for tickets.
Crack a window: Don't let hints of sun this morning fool you, the weather won’t be great today. Temperatures will stagnate in the mid to upper 40s, clouds will keep the sky grayish, and rain will probably force your 4/20 festivities indoors. In that case, Thrillist has a few recommendations to keep your apartment smelling fresh. Avoid joints, build yourself a little dryer sheet contraption, and invest in “pot pourri.” Or open a window and hope for the best like an adult lol.
Hope is not lost: The Seattle Weather Blog and I have had our disagreements in the past, but right now we are both crossing our fingers that this forecast is correct. Catch me at Madison Park with the girlies and a freaking watermelon.
Please please please come true.— Seattle Weather Blog (@KSeattleWeather) April 19, 2023
-Signed, All of Seattle pic.twitter.com/h41V3JUO21
Two people are pursuing a class-action lawsuit against the Port of Seattle, Sea-Tac, Alaska, and Delta: Attorneys filed the lawsuit Wednesday in King County and say the airlines, the airport, and the Port of Seattle all are allegedly showering “harmful pollutants on people’s homes with impunity.” About 300,000 people, including 60,000 children, live within a five-mile radius of the airport, which the lawsuit called the “contamination zone.” Planes burning jet fuel cause the pollution, as well as the heavy metals that flake off the planes, according to the lawsuit. These pollutants cause people living in the zone to develop cancer, heart disease, and chronic lower respiratory disease at significantly higher rates than people outside the zone, according to two studies cited in the suit.
Attorneys called this an issue of environmental justice because almost one-third of the people living in the zone are low-income, the majority are people of color, and they are more likely to be immigrants. Attorneys want the Port of Seattle to pay to clean up the area, provide restitution, and seed a fund to pay for a medical monitoring program. The Seattle Times reached out to Delta and Alaska, who didn’t respond. The Port said it follows all federal, state, and local requirements related to environmental issues such as noise and air quality.
Poof: SpaceX launched the most powerful rocket ever built this morning in Texas, and it did not go as planned. The uncrewed rocket, known as Starship, went KABOOM shortly after liftoff. SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk is still calling this one a victory because now the company can learn something and improve the next attempt. Plus, rockets usually flub their first launch.
This is the moment SpaceX's Starship - the biggest and most powerful rocket ever built - launched, and then failed before completing its full test.— The Associated Press (@AP) April 20, 2023
No people or satellites were aboard. https://t.co/DpnSfSGuZn pic.twitter.com/GEYKokG2B7
Ferry down! On Saturday, the ferry Walla Walla ran aground. Washington State Ferries blame a failed generator, but there might be more to the story. According to the Seattle Times, investigators will also look into what systems and redundancies failed to make up for the lost generator.
Charges dropped: The City of Seattle dropped charges of reckless driving and assault with sexual motivation against that one rich guy CEO Dan Price, who everyone knows as the CEO who cut his salary to pay his workers more, but who you should probably also know as a person who used that good image to lure and allegedly abuse women.
Gun control: The Washington State Legislature passed a bill yesterday to ban selling, distributing, importing, and manufacturing more than 50 semi-automatic gun models. If you own any of these firearms already or you're a cop, then the state still wants you to have guns.
Sweet 16 shooting: Alabama cops arrested a third young person yesterday in connection with a mass shooting at a 16-year-old’s birthday party that left four dead and dozens injured. The suspects, ages 16, 17, and 20, are charged with four counts of reckless murder.
Here comes Bobby: Anti-vaxxer Robert F. Kennedy announced he's going after the 2024 Democratic presidential nomination. If he hopes to continue his family's White House legacy, Kennedy will have to beat Gwyneth Paltrow wannabe Marianne Williamson and probably President Joe Biden, who is expected to hop in the race any moment now.
Friday's the Day: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled to temporarily maintain the Food and Drug Administration's approval of the abortion pill known as mifepristone until the end of Friday. The move buys the justices two more days to deliberate an unprecedented ruling from a lower court that could make it more difficult to access the abortion pill across the country, even in pro-abortion states.
Justice for Ralph: Andrew Lester, the white guy who shot Ralph Yarl, a Black child, just for knocking on his door, made his first court appearance yesterday. He pleaded not guilty to felony charges of first-degree assault, which could land him in prison for life, and armed criminal action, which could put him in the slammer for 3 to 15 years. If you're thinking, "I wonder if...," then the I'm here to tell you the answer is yes:
Ah. https://t.co/sEeWPVqptT pic.twitter.com/AKJGxQW8ct— Adam Serwer 🍝 (@AdamSerwer) April 20, 2023
Not to relitigate: Okay, I’m sorry. I had to write this down somewhere. As you know, the City Council passed a $10 cap on fees for late rental payments. That’s awesome! But there’s some disagreement on who on the council gets bragging rights. [Eds note: Lol omg, Hannah, noooo.]
Who’s amendment is it anyway? Council Member Kshama Sawant proposed the $10 cap, but her committee watered it down. The next day, Sawant announced via email that she would propose an amendment to restore the $10 cap. But Council Member Tammy Morales’s office beat her to the punch and asked central staff to write up the amendment first. Even though Sawant initially proposed the $10 cap and already said she would propose an amendment to restore it, Morales got top billing credit in the label “prime” sponsor. During the Tuesday meeting, Sawant made a point to correct any use of the word "prime" sponsor as she believed all three council members were equal co-sponsors.
Tension: As I said in a tweet during that meeting, this is likely a sore spot for Sawant, who sometimes builds the momentum for progressive policy only for others to get the credit. She certainly feels that way about the JumpStart payroll tax. Anyway, after the vote on the late fee cap, Mosqueda and Morales sent out a joint press release with the headline “Councilmembers Morales and Mosqueda celebrate passage of $10 late fee cap,” which called Morales the prime sponsor twice and did not mention Sawant’s original proposal until the last paragraph. Guess they'll have to agree to disagree?
Courtesy of Jay: Apparently, this song was on the first record Jay Inslee ever owned, "The Ballad of Billy the Kid" by Marty Robbins.