More than half of King County homeless are sleeping outside: The county has seen a 4 percent increase in homeless people. There are 12,112 homeless in King County according to the annual one night count, Count Us In. There’s also a substantial increase in vehicle campers. “More than 70 percent of the county’s unsheltered homeless people were in Seattle,” reports the Seattle Times. According to the interim director of All Home, Kyra Zylstra, this number represents progress and shows that the investments the county is making in resources is housing more people and is paying off. There was a decline in the number of homeless families and veterans.
Racial disparity among homeless families grows: Last year, 38 percent of homeless families identified as black or African American. This year, the number has grown 10 percent and added an addition 183, according to KUOW.
UW PhD student researching Egypt judicial system arrested: Walid Al-Shobaky has been accused of “spreading false news and joining a terrorist group,” reports MEMO. Al-Shobaky was missing for four days last week. He was arrested and did not resurface again until he appeared before the Supreme State Security Prosecution on Sunday. Other activists and journalists are implicated in the same case. Al-Shobaky's situation bears a striking resemblance to the 2016 ordeal endured by Giulio Regeni, an Italian PhD student researching Egypt's independent trade unions. Regeni was tortured and murdered.
Who stages a robbery at rush hour near Mercer Street? Three idiots tried to flee a South Lake Union guitar store with a $1,600 guitar in tow. They were involved in a multi-vehicle crash on Mercer Street. One member of the gang stood on the roof of a car wielding a machete. The three were arrested. A fourth member walked away from the scene and police have yet to locate him. I’d like to think that the reason for the robbery is something cool, like they’re on their last dime and relying on an upcoming battle of the bands to survive but the lead guitarist’s guitar broke. Or, it’s a grittier American reboot of Pixar’s Coco.
Oregon man’s body retrieved from Mount Adams: The man’s body was found by other climbers on Sunday. It wasn’t able to be retrieved until yesterday due to poor weather conditions. His body was found at 8,500 feet elevation.
Insect infestation could worsen wildfires: Eastern Washington forests are filled with all types of tiny creepy crawlies. They mind their own business but their own business includes munching on wood and fucking with trees. Basically, their presence makes trees more vulnerable to fires. It also adds to the build up of fuel on the forest floor that keeps growing due to fire suppression. Let our forests burn when they want to burn. It’s natural! Except now it’ll be out of hand because we don’t let them burn and it would be a whole big thing.
Did you hear about the 13 hour standoff on Capitol Hill? There was a domestic violence call at 1:30 a.m. The suspect, a King County sheriff’s deputy, had barricaded himself in the bathroom. It was a stalemate pretty much after that. Steven Hsieh has the full details here.
I-5 closures are back: We had a nice reprieve for Memorial Day. But this weekend we're back to business as usual. Traffic will be blocked between the northbound West Seattle Bridge and the Convention Center starting Friday at 8 p.m. It’s the fourth of six weekends devoted to an I-5 facelift.
Look at that lava:
LAVA FIRENADO: Video captures a stunning lava show in Puna, Hawaii - (Video by Chris Carroll) pic.twitter.com/Sy9OSvwEet— NBC News (@NBCNews) May 31, 2018
This infographic is old but it’s cool: It’s from May 15th which is ancient in today’s news cycle. But fuck it. You can see where people from colleges across the nation end up. I looked up UW and over 50 percent of people that go there stay in the area. That’s pretty neat.
Threat of more tariffs looms: The Tump administration is using the threat of steel and aluminum tariffs on the European Union, Mexico, and Canada to get what it wants. Namely, the U.S. wants Canada and Mexico to agree to a rewrite of the North American Free Trade Agreement. According to the New York Times, t’s been pressuring Europe to “make trade concessions on other fronts, including cutting the amount of metals the bloc exports to the United States.” The threats aren’t having the desired response. Instead, they’re hardening the other countries’ resolve against the U.S. and Trump’s demands.
Update: Mexico and Europe are already clapping back.
BREAKING: Mexico answers US tariffs with its own on products including pork bellies, grapes, apples and flat steel.— The Associated Press (@AP) May 31, 2018
BREAKING: EU chief Juncker says US tariffs decision leaves the bloc with "no choice" but to impose counter-measures.— The Associated Press (@AP) May 31, 2018
Denmark bans burqas: Denmark joins Austria, France, and Belgium in implementing laws that ban garments that cover the face. The country says it is not a religious ban but it mostly impacts traditionally dressed Muslim women. You are still allowed to cover your face in Denmark if it’s cold out or if you’re wearing a motorcycle helmet.
The other Kim summit: I have to give the BBC credit for that quip. It made me laugh. Anyway. Donald Trump met with Kim Kardashian West yesterday.
This is the New York Post’s coverage of that event:
Let’s unpack this for a second: Normally, I couldn’t give less of a shit about what the Kardashians do in their regular day-to-day lives. And we all know Kim’s husband, Kanye West, has shimmied himself up Trump’s asshole. So, where do we stand on this meeting? First off, it’s important to know the facts, something the Post cover lacks. Kim Kardashian West met with Trump to discuss prison reform. Kardashian West is advocating for a pardon on behalf of a 67-year-old woman, a grandmother, who received a life sentence on a first-offense, non-violent drug charge. The woman, Alice Marie Johnson, has served 20 years of her sentence. I think that is pretty admirable. The Post’s cover is not only blatantly misogynistic, but it diminishes the legitimate work Kardashian West is doing.
We are optimistic about Ms. Johnson’s future and hopeful that she —and so many like her—will get a second chance at life.— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) May 31, 2018
New Blabbermouth podcast! Why "Free Speech" Is a Bogus Debate When It Comes to Roseanne
Trump pardons Dinesh D’Souza: The conservative commentator who pleaded guilty to campaign finance fraud is the one who deserves a second chance in the president’s book. So, he's getting one. D’Souza, sentenced to five years of probation in 2014, will see a full pardon after, according to Trump, “he was treated very unfairly by our government!”
Teen banned from graduation for trying to sell high school on Craigslist: To be fair, he only listed it for $12,725. That would be insulting to any school. His school banned him from his graduation. The ACLU is stepping in on the student’s behalf and filing a lawsuit.
Papua New Guinea prisoners released to forage for food: Two months of severe shortages caused prison officials to take desperate measures. The government only provided $7,000 for food rations to the prison which houses 290 men. That’s a sharp decrease from the usual $18,000 a month the prison receives. The guards released 35 prisoners to gather food outside the prison walls. All but one inmate returned.
Update from my alley:
I rarely ever walk one side of my alley. I did yesterday because my usual bus stop was moved and now I get off past my house instead of before it. It’s inconvenient but that’s a gripe for another time. Anyway, I was exploring these uncharted waters, the Lewis to my own Clark, when I stumbled upon a gloomy portent. Actually, it was three gloomy portents.
absolutely PERPLEXED by the three bags full of neatly organized feathers left in my alley like some kind of bread crumb trail pic.twitter.com/d0emFkRMUP— nathalie graham (@gramsofgnats) May 30, 2018
I am no ornithologist, we all know this. But through careful study and extensive research I figured they were crow feathers.
Crows, as we all know, symbolize death. They are the harbingers of imminent doom, an omen of our own mortality. Why, then, did someone have a murder's worth of crow feathers in bags? Why were they littered in my alley? Why were they from 2011?
who put you here? what happened on july 23, 2011? pic.twitter.com/oDYeiCJfnp— nathalie graham (@gramsofgnats) May 30, 2018
Obviously, it’s time to do another “Something Happened Here.” Feel free to comment your own interpretations. Mine is as follows:
There was a man. He loved another man. Each day a crow would land on the window sill of the duplex they shared with some frankly unruly college kids. The man thought the crow was a friend, a comfort. His partner did not agree, he would knock on wood whenever the crow appeared, and would mutter a gloomy “nevermore.” That was a raven, not a crow, the man would say. What’s the difference, his partner would reply. Well, the man would go on.
Soon, his partner fell ill. The crow kept coming. His partner got worse. One day, he was gone. It was July 23, 2011. The crow didn’t return after that. All that was left was a black crow feather. The man placed it in a bag. The years ticked on, different batches of undergrads moved into his duplex annually. Whenever he spotted a crow feather, he collected it. Until, one day, seven years later, the crow touched down on his window sill again. The man greeted it as he would an old friend, maybe even an old lover. He knew it was his time now. He left the feathers for someone else to find. He didn’t need them anymore.