Tuesday Open Thread

Today ONLY, the Gates Foundation is matching by 50% on Donors Choose.  Please consider donating to a classroom/school of your choice to support this effort.

The Washington State Branch of the International Dyslexia Association is having a Family Fair this Saturday, August 17th from 9 am to 12:30 pm at the Hamlin Robinson School, 1701 20th Ave S. Tickets.
Event info:
  • Attend four break out sessions, choosing from several topics for each
  • Hear from dyslexia specialists, advocates, student panels, as well as  representatives from Microsoft, OSPI, and the Hallowell Todaro ADHD Center. 
  • Parents are welcome to attend without children. 
  • Each parent and child must have their own registration. Students 12+ may attend sessions
    separately from their parents. 
  • Free t-shirts while supplies last. 
  • Reception will be held after sessions to connect with other parents, as well as with local organizations. 
  • Three clock hours available—$10.
From Thrifty NW Mom, a reminder about Teen Tix
If you have a teen between 13 and 19, you might want to check out the Teen Tix program. Teens can get free and discounted tickets to many events throughout the Seattle area. They have recently added a few venues in Tacoma too!

Teen Tix is a free arts access pass that allows teenagers to purchase $5 tickets to theater, dance, music, movies and visual arts events. Teens sign up for free, and then are able to purchase tickets to various performing arts venues for $5 each. There are even free events sometimes available to teens.
From the Seattle Times, a follow-up story about the sweetened beverage tax.  The Mayor had said she wanted to use some funds from it for other purposes rather than the stated programs but the Council had a veto-proof vote to keep those programs fully funded.
When the council passed the tax in 2017, it indicated the money should be used to boost healthful-food and early-education programs serving low-income communities of color that are targeted by soda marketing and that were expected to bear the brunt of the tax.

But when the mayor drew up this year’s budget, she used about $6 million from the soda tax to supplant baseline allocations for food banks, a parent-child program and other services that previously had been supported by the city’s general fund.  The maneuver freed up $6 million in general-fund revenue for her other priorities.
A great story from the Seattle Times about who is a superhero, a visual art display at the UW Tower Mezzanine Lounge, 4333 Brooklyn Ave. N.E.
In “The American Superhero,” an exhibit currently on display at UW Tower, people — of many races, sexualities, gender identities and socioeconomic status — are photographed in Captain America costumes. Next to them is an excerpt of their stories — what’s important to them, what they’ve overcome — and what their super power is. This exhibit tells the stories of overlooked American superheros, from drag queens to congresswomen, painting an image of the American flag with more colors than just red, white and blue.
I don't know if you saw the YouTube video of this but Seattle police officers decided they had to really harangue a 13-year old girl for using the wrong sidewalk chalk at a protest.  From the Seattle Times:
The Seattle Police Department drew criticism after officers arrested a crying 13-year-old girl who had accidentally used spray paint, instead of washable chalk paint, to write on a wall at Seattle City Hall during a climate-change protest Friday afternoon.

A 25-year-old man was arrested along with the seventh-grader, according to a Seattle police blotter post that said officers were responding to a report of vandalism and that building security said they saw people damaging the building facade.

A video posted on Twitter by chemist and lecturer Heather Price shows officers cuffing the child and telling people they wanted to take her to the precinct rather than sort out the matter there in public view, “while we’re surrounded by a bunch of people who want to make their opinions known.”

“Imagine if instead of arresting this little girl the cops had helped her clean it up. Imagine if they had thanked her for her service for protecting the planet,” (Nikkita) Oliver wrote. “That kind of public service would have actually been transformative and accountable.”
What's on your mind?


Unknown said…
The little girl committed vandalism. It didn't matter if she meant to do it temporarily or permanently. She broke the law.

This glorifying lawbreaking and romanticizing civil disobedience should be treated carefully. Thirteen year olds (and older people with juvenile mentalities) aren't morally well developed enough to participate in these kinds of activities out of their own judgments and not the judgments of older (say 25 year olds?) who are playing them.

Let's stop using people under voting age as props and pawns in our grown up conflicts. I include SPS and its teachers in that statement.

She unknowingly broke the law; the adult should have been arrested. On climate change and gun control, youth are leading the way.
Anonymous said…
I'm pulling my self up off the floor. "On climate change and gun control", buzz buzz can you hear the buzz words? Ok I guess your cool aid pitcher is all drunk.

There were 3 mass shootings around the same time 1. Texas - a white male killed many people with a legally purchased AK47. Nothing in the new gun control laws would have stopped that. 2. Ohio - White male shooter used a hi-cap magazine, the new gun control laws would have caused him to switch out mags which could have possibly saved people. 3. Oregon- a black female used stolen gun to kill her brother and wound 6 other family members. The gun control laws didn't stop her. 4. Chicago - 57 people were shot it's unknown the race of every shooter or if the guns were legal or not.

Why do people keep asking for changes in laws believing that a criminal cares.

Just as a funny note 80% of young people think socialism is good but can't explain why. I know why, it's all the FREE STUFF proponents are promising.

I think most middle school students know it's not ok to vandalize other people's property or the communities property. It doesn't matter if it was chalk paint, chalk paint still gets into the pores of cement and stone which makes it hard to remove 100%.

I will pass on climate change,how can someone argue that the climate does not change?

Just facts
Anonymous said…
Any actual information on contract negotiations with SEA and the district? What is SEA asking for? Where can parents find such information given that contract negotiations are closed? How likely are we to see yet another strike?

Concerned parent
Alsept Teresa said…
Concerned parent. Those of us in SEA don’t even know what is happening.

The paint was the kind to turn something into a chalkboard. The person who bought it either didn’t read or didn’t care.

I thought it was interesting that the Times allowed comments. They usually don’t when it involves children.

Anonymous said…
I've heard the negotiations are not going well. SEA is claiming that SPS is hiding over $150 million and they want some. SPS is in a pickle because they were claiming they were broke and now it's clear that they were lying to the public and teachers.

Why didn't the board sniff this out?

Bad News
Anonymous said…
Maybe that $150 mil thing is linked to the ref to $167 mil in one of the SEA contract updates on the FB page: SEA Bargaining Update #8 SEA...

• Last year the district fund balance (surplus revenue above actual expenditures) was three times the budgeted level, and the district’s budget surplus is now at a four-year high. District administrators have built up their reserve accounts with money that SEA believes should be spent supporting our students.

• The SPS budget says that spending on the classroom is the budget priority, yet the district actually spent $167.8 million less in the classroom than what was budgeted during the last four school years.

Unknown said…
She didn't know that painting other people's walls without their consent is wrong--both legally and in plain courtesy?

I don't see young people who haven't passed eighth grade Earth Science as leaders in the climate debate, but I applaud their growing interest in science and studyding the problem--scientifically, politically, demographically, and economically--but until then, they're repeating what they've heard the grown ups say.

I've been in the high school humanities classroom for over 20 years. They can't weigh complex, systemic reasoning with competing imperatives until at least the eleventh grade (save for about the top ten percentiles who develop early).

I would love to see the data on those SPS funding claims. That would be quite a story.

Just Fact, do you think people want gun laws changed because of mass shootings? It's going to take more than a gun law in this country (unlike New Zealand). But it would surely help.

No, I want gun laws to protect again the number of suicides by gun. I want to protect against toddlers shooting themselves or others. I would love to see suicides and accidental deaths go down by half.

FYI, Rep Phil Fortunato (R-Auburn) said this in an email in 2018:

"In the case with families with children, every gun owner I know has their guns secured."

I'm thinking he doesn't know many families with children with guns because the volume of kids killed every week is pretty steady.

He goes on:
"Having safe storage laws are just ways to punish gun owners in the event of an accident because no one will know if the gun is locked up or not until something happens."

To which I say, "Huh?" The owners of the gun will know if it was locked. They'll know if they have a gun safe.

Then the whopper (as he says "professional single women" who don't have kids need guns):

"In order to have a real study why don't we stage a break in and see which woman can defend themselves. The one with a gun available or the one who has to unlock her safe and load her gun before use."

Yes, there's that WA Legislature display of sensible thinking.

I want gun owners to be held responsible for what happens with their guns in their homes. Not so much to ask.

SP and Just Facts, meet Greta Thunberg. She's a 16-year activist who has testified at Davos and before many legislative bodies. You are never too young to care about this planet.
Anonymous said…
Laws do not prevent anything if they did then we would not need police, courts or prisons.

In WA state the authorities are not allowed to register firearms to individuals, but they do. When enough people believe as you do then the illegal registry will be used to seize legally owned weapons.

No one wants children or adults to be injured or killed, but prescription drugs harm more children then guns do. How about a law that holds people accountable for their alcohol, drugs, weed and guns? All four need to be locked up and if not then the purchaser should be prosecuted. How about that?

Back to climate - I think your side might be a bit more believable if they walked their talk. For example, Beto released a video of him changing a tire, but the problem is the tire was attached to biggest gas guzzler Toyota makes. I can go through each Demochange candidate and provide a similar hypocritical example. I'm sure Greta's wealthy parents flew to Davos on a flight that produced more Co2 than every small village in the Congo.

Just Facts
Oh Just Facts, why have laws at all then? Strawman there.

I don't want to "seize" anyone's weapons. I want to hold them responsible for them just as I would a car. What the harm in that? Oh I know - it will financially cost gun owners. Secure your weapons and no fear of that.

I don't want to hear about drugs or anything else. We are talking about guns. One thing that cannot be denied if you are an adult of any amount of age - we NEVER had to fear guns when we were in school. We NEVER practiced "active shooter" drills.

Go look up Greta; she takes a train everywhere. She's on the spectrum for autism. She's a wonderful role model because she fits no mold for "child activist." You might not fling accusations about a child without Googling her first.

Anonymous said…
Oh BS you mentioned New Zealand. You would be more than pleased if all guns were outlawed.

Why do anti-gunners never want to talk about all the threats to children? So let's get this straight, you are proposing that a parent who owns a gun whose child is accidentally killed by that gun should be further punished? You also have advocated for gun owners to be punished when there guns are stolen and used in a crime.

You do know that is unconstitutional, right. Do you even believe in the constitution or are you one of those living constitution believers AKA flat earthers?

Over the past year you have made some very anti-police comments because you said that you believe POC are being unjustly killed by police, right ? So, don't you think citizens might need guns to protect themselves from the police? Maybe from mob rule, like from the people that believe in using the popular vote.

I know you have fallen out of favor with the Justice Warriors and SEA over Amplify and it appears you are trying to wedge yourself back into the "in" crowed by mimicking Joe Biden, but I don't think it will work for you.

I expect you any day now to give up beef due to cow farts.

Just Facts
Anonymous said…


JF,this will be my last comment on this issue.

1) I have NEVER said punish homeowners whose guns get stolen. Ever. Of course not, that makes no sense.
2) Yes, I would like a gun law for homeowners who do not secure their guns from children living in the house. Send them to jail? Nope, it's a big, big fine. If you want people to snap to, you hit them in the wallet. Enough gun owners fined for children dying because the homeowner was careless and you'll see those accidental death numbers go down. That's a start.
3) No, I don't want to outlaw all guns. New Zealand is an example of actually DOING something. In our country, we allow people, around the country, in church, at the mall, at entertainment events, schools, workplaces - everywhere to get mowed down and nothing changes. See the difference?
4) I'm not anti-police - I want police officers to have better training on deescalation so we don't have so many of these officers killing people when it didn't need to happen. I know (and have said over and over) how hard the job of policing is. But there are too many shoot now, ask question later shootings especially of POC.
5) The popular vote = mob rule? Now, I'm scared if you think that.

Your comment about SJW prompts me to remember a thread I wanted to write. But if you think I've written this blog for more than a decade and worried about which group was happy, you'd be wrong.

For the record, I'm not for Biden. Haven't been for him from the start.

And lastly, we should all give up meat/poultry/fish a couple of days a week. Better for the planet, better for our health.

Go Greta!
Anonymous said…
Just Facts

"...Do you even believe in the constitution or are you one of those living constitution believers AKA flat earthers?.."

Could you help us understand how someone who has an opinion about the constitution being a living document that can and should change with time and the same as a person who-with no evidence what so ever, believes the earth is flat? They seem like kind of strange (rather random) things to put together.

Anonymous said…
Dewolf's signs are still up. And more infuriating is many of them are illegally placed. Just another example of how self-centered and narcissistic he is.

Anonymous said…
It's my opinion if someone believes that the constitution should be re-written every time liberals have an idea or grievance then they are as far out there as one of the flat earthers.

Yep it's mob rule, because people think that just because the majority of all voters across all states have a higher count that they get to over-ride the constitution. Funny thing is, if the vote goes the other way then they think the opposite. Remember it's the untied states of America, not America there is a big difference.

I tell you what is confusing, why is the fact that Greta is autistic relevant?

Let's leave this subject alone as MW want's.

Just Facts
Anonymous said…
Sorry one more jab,

That pesky constitution always gets in the way of the big plan!

Just Facts
I love the Constitution but my belief is that it is a living thing, not a static thing.
Anonymous said…
I'll have a Caesar salad with blue cheese dressing, tomatoes and green olives.

Is it still a Caesar salad?

Just Facts
Just Facts, move on.
Anonymous said…
Thanks JF for flushing out the closet Marxist named Melissa Westbrook.

I think all the fighting with her SJW friends was all a show, a false flag event.

"Living Constitution" it's the Marxist favorite statement. That was the dead giveaway over her oppo to the 2nd.

I will be adding Melissa Westbrook to Reds . She won't be able to pretend she not a Marxist.

Let's see how she tries to wiggle out of this.

Bagged Taged
Really? I'm having a handful of people calling me racist in order to what? What a dumb statement.

I'm not against the 2nd Amendment and you will never see me say that.

I'm not a Marxist or even a Socialist. I'm a Democrat.

Moving on.
Anonymous said…
Oh buy a vowel, SP. She was engaging in the most American of activities, peaceful protest. She's trying to change the world for the better. She's going to have to live with the impacts of environmental degradation a lot longer than you or I.

Anonymous said…
Just facts, turn off Fox news and take a walk. You need to clear your head.

Then pry open your mind a do some research. Countries with strickter gun laws do not have anything like America's level of gun deaths.

AK-47s are designed to kill people, fast. I didn't say shoot people fast, I said kill people fast. They cause so much damage that the victims are carved up and most are unsaveable. That's the intent: they are weapons of war and they flood our streets.

The gun lobby has Congress by the short hairs and it's all about making money.

The second ammendment stipulates "well-regulated". We need gun regulation and it is constitutional.

The Earth is warming...check the stats if you can pry yourself away from Fox news and Trump's twitter tirades.

You are a disgrace.


Anonymous said…
"Laws do not prevent anything if they did then we would not need police, courts or prisons. "

Good point! Let's have no laws, since they do nothing.


sorry for feeding the trolls today but the ignorance is astounding.

Anonymous said…
The Second Amendment protects a "well-regulated militia". We have the armed forces, which we did not have when the Constitution was written. Our armed forces are a well-regulated militia. What we have now, with gun-toting rednecks wanting all of us to carry guns is a disorganized, unregulated, violent mess. Full stop. Don't use our precious Constitution as justification for your obsessive love of guns. If you can't make a rational argument, you distort the Constitution to shut everyone else up. Cowardly tactic for the seriously mistaken. Then you claim that any regulation is a slippery slope to taking all your guns and turning us into Russia. Oh wait, you probably like Russia now, and North Korea, Trump's BFFs.

Patriotic-er than you
Anonymous said…
Read what Melissa wrote, MW would like to see all guns removed from citizens, like in NEW ZEALAND. Make them pay Ae?

"Under New Zealand law, some lawful, proper, and sufficient purpose is needed to use, discharge or carry any firearm, airgun, or similar weapon. The person carrying, using, or discharging the weapon is obliged to prove the purpose was lawful, proper, and sufficient. This requirement applies even if the person can legally possess the weapon. Exactly what constitutes a lawful, proper, and sufficient purpose is not defined in legislation and must be proven on a case by case basis"

For all purposes this allows authorities to arbitrarily and capriciously choose who can and can't posses a firearm in addition determine who can fire their weapons.

Oh look we have a constitutional scholar commenting, if what you claim were true then guns would have been gone long ago.

Democrat, socialist or Marxist are all about the same these days.

Pack mentality
If you can't discern that I said I wanted action like in New Zealand, you're not very bright.

Move on. We are done with this topic for now.
Anonymous said…
67% of Americans now support an assault weapons ban like we had before. This was in FOX poll. My family owns guns and we support gun control and an assault weapons ban.


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