All posts by Editor

Editor in Chief of the South Seattle Emerald

Rats, Moldy Food, and a Dearth of Staff: Community Demands Better Conditions, Options at Othello Safeway

by Carolyn Bick


The last time Michelle Timson visited the Othello Safeway was when the novel coronavirus pandemic first broke out.

“I won’t go to the Othello Safeway. It’s way too crowded. There’s no social distancing at all being enforced from what I have seen from the one time that I went,” Timson said.

But the lack of social distancing was just the rotting cherry on top of a fermenting sundae for Timson. Like many of her fellow Othellians, the South Seattle resident had had enough of the store, which many in the neighborhood have complained about for years, citing everything from rotting produce, expired packaged food and rat sightings to an overworked, understaffed employee base and an unsafe parking lot. Because of this, Timson and more than 1,500 others have signed a petition started by local activist and 37th District legislative candidate Chukundi Salisbury calling for better store conditions.

Continue reading Rats, Moldy Food, and a Dearth of Staff: Community Demands Better Conditions, Options at Othello Safeway

OPINION: Mayor Durkan, if You Care about Public Health, Stop the Sweeps

by Julianna Alson, Omid Bagheri Garakani, Miranda Vargas


Dear Mayor Durkan,

We are Seattle-based public health practitioners and homeless service providers imploring you to stop the removals of homeless encampments. We also endorse Councilmember Morales’ Council Bill 119796 to limit encampment removals during the state of emergency. Seattle is under the national spotlight of pandemic response. You have the choice to set an example for the country with evidence-based public health strategies that truly protect public health and safety.

Continue reading OPINION: Mayor Durkan, if You Care about Public Health, Stop the Sweeps

Ask a Therapist: How Can I Keep a Divorce From Impacting My Children?

by Roy Fisher


Question: I’m going through a divorce and my soon-to-be ex-wife does anything she can do to get under my skin. Every chance she gets she tries to take me back to court for something. She seems to enjoy making my life miserable. We have 3 children and I am worried what impact this will have on them. If I try for sole custody, that makes me look like I’m trying to keep the children away from her. I want them to have a relationship with their mother, but I am concerned about what she says or does around them. Any suggestions on how not to lose my mind? I’m really worried about how this will affect the children.

Continue reading Ask a Therapist: How Can I Keep a Divorce From Impacting My Children?

Co-LEAD Allowed to Start Moving People From Seattle Streets Into Hotels, Too Late to Help Those Removed in Last Three Sweeps

by Erica C. Barnett 

(This article was previously published on The C is for Crank and has been reprinted with permission.)


More than six weeks after the Seattle-based Public Defender Association (PDA) launched its Co-LEAD program in Burien, the diversion program has come home to Seattle and began serving five homeless clients last week. Co-LEAD provides hotel rooms, case management, and other basic supports to people experiencing homelessness who have been in the criminal justice system and lack legal options for making money during the COVID-19 pandemic. After launching the program in Burien in April, the PDA had hoped to enroll some of the people who were dispersed throughout the city during several recent encampment sweeps, but were unable to do so because the city moved ahead with the removals before Co-LEAD case workers could identify and enroll new participants.

Continue reading Co-LEAD Allowed to Start Moving People From Seattle Streets Into Hotels, Too Late to Help Those Removed in Last Three Sweeps

COVID-19 in Native Communities: Recalling Past Trauma and Present Hope

by Matt Remle


“Within these late years, there hath, by God’s visitation, reigned a wonderful plague, the utter destruction, devastation, and depopulation of that whole territory, so as there is not left any that do claim or challenge any kind of interest therein. We, in our judgment, are persuaded and satisfied, that the appointed time is come in which Almighty God, in his great goodness and bounty towards us, and our people, hath thought fit and determined, that those large and goodly territories, deserted as it were by their natural inhabitants, should be possessed and enjoyed by such of our subjects.”

—King James I, The Charter of New-England 


The Great Dying

Every Thanksgiving, classrooms across the country learn about a group of religiously persecuted Christian reformers fleeing England in order to worship freely in the New World. These Pilgrims likened themselves to the Israelite exodus from Egypt, a people chosen by God to be guided across the Atlantic to find, conquer and lay claim to their promised land. Upon arrival in what would become Plymouth Colony, the Pilgrims found a “promised land” that did not need to be conquered like that of Canaan, but rather a ghost town littered with untended fields, empty villages and skeletal remains of the original inhabitants. For the Pilgrim colonizers this was proof of God’s divine plan.

Continue reading COVID-19 in Native Communities: Recalling Past Trauma and Present Hope

Stay-at-Home, Read-at-Home with KCLS: Happy Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

by Maggie Block


It is amazing how quickly COVID-19 has changed our world. The biggest day-to-day change for many of us is Governor Jay Inslee’s stay-at-home order. Suddenly our schools, jobs, and favorite outdoor activities have been put on hold. While this is the best action in order to keep Washingtonians safe, it’s still very hard to be stuck inside. So, the King County Library System (KCLS) and the South Seattle Emerald are teaming up to bring you the best magic we know of to help get you through these tough times: books. 

Continue reading Stay-at-Home, Read-at-Home with KCLS: Happy Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

No library card? No problem. Every Seattle Public School Student Now Has Access

by Ben Adlin


It’s no news to Seattle parents and caretakers that educating kids has become even more of a challenge since the city closed school campuses in March. Many have been asked without warning to take on the roles of teacher and childcare worker while still having to travel to essential jobs, find new employment or adapt to working from home.

A newly expanded partnership between Seattle Public Schools and the Seattle Public Library hopes to ease the transition by offering families free access to a suite of online resources. With just their school identification number, all K-12 students can now log in to the library’s digital databases and electronic media. 

Continue reading No library card? No problem. Every Seattle Public School Student Now Has Access

Couch-A-Thon Takes Seattle Film Festivals Online and Benefits Artists’ Relief Funds

by Mark Van Streefkerk

A number of Seattle film festivals were scheduled for 2020, but unfortunately COVID-19 had other plans. Since public gatherings are temporarily banned, this year’s in-person festivals have been canceled. But thanks to the new online film and music festival Couch-A-Thon, content from the scrapped events is now available for streaming. Continue reading Couch-A-Thon Takes Seattle Film Festivals Online and Benefits Artists’ Relief Funds

Are Partial Tuition Refunds for Distance and Virtual Learning Justified?

by Chhavi Mehra


The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the lives of many around the globe. In the U.S., that is true of many small-business owners and low-income families who’ve been struggling to put food on their table. However, a population that may often feel left out of these conversations are college students. Some have had their commencement ceremonies canceled, postponed or held virtually, and some have had to adjust to a new learning environment — one that is remote.  Continue reading Are Partial Tuition Refunds for Distance and Virtual Learning Justified?

OPINION: Don’t Thank Veterans on Memorial Day, Join Them in Honoring the Fallen

by Peter Sessum


This is one of those things that drives veterans crazy, admittedly some take it too far. Civilians don’t see why it matters and while they don’t intend to offend, some do not fully grasp why thanking veterans on Memorial Day bothers most of us so much. I tell people it is like wishing me a happy birthday on my dead brother’s birthday. Continue reading OPINION: Don’t Thank Veterans on Memorial Day, Join Them in Honoring the Fallen