Category Archives: Voices

OPINION: Naomi Osaka Prioritized Her Mental Health. It’s Time We Followed Suit

by Marcus Harrison Green

(This article is co-published with The Seattle Times) 


On the last day of Mental Health Awareness Month, in May, I hooted louder for Naomi Osaka than I ever have for any athlete, and she was nowhere near a tennis court. 

Despite being well-positioned to earn her fifth Grand Slam title, Osaka prioritized her mental health and withdrew from the French Open on Monday. 

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OPINION: Megan Rapinoe, the Cascadia Rivalry, and Letting Women Athletes Talk Trash

by Maggie Mertens, contributing columnist


Last Sunday’s OL Reign game ended in a 2-1 win against rivals the Portland Thorns. The match was significant for a few reasons. It was the first match the Reign had won against the Thorns in four meetings. It also ended an 11-game win streak for Portland, handed them their first loss at Providence Park in 602 days, and marked the first OL Reign win of the 2021 regular season. 

But perhaps most importantly, it featured something we don’t see nearly enough of in women’s sports: epic trash talk.

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OPINION: Dear White Parents, Stop Using Kids as a Political Weapon Against Schools

by Alycia Ramirez


It’s been over a year since the COVID-19 pandemic upended much of life as we knew it. We’ve not only had to drastically change how we live, work, and play but also how we provide an education to our kids. With public schools across Washington just returning to a hybrid model after months of remote learning this school year, there have also been calls demanding that school districts open immediately for full-time, in-person instruction. However, these calls often ignore entirely the inequitable effects the pandemic has had on Black and Brown communities.

The demands for full-time public school reopening increasingly come from white parents who say remote learning is disproportionately harming Black and Brown families and who claim a full reopen would benefit Black and Brown kids the most. At School Board meetings, on social media, and elsewhere, I have heard white parents repeatedly professing their concern for the widening education gaps facing Black and Brown children and insisting the remedy is to offer five-day-a-week, in-person instruction — now

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OPINION: Stop Equating the State of Israel With the Jewish People

by Wendy Elisheva Somerson

(This is one of three essays from local community members that the Emerald will be publishing on this topic.)


In a recent spate of local op-eds, Jewish institutional leaders are once again accusing local pro-Palestine protesters of antisemitism, but as a Jewish resident of Seattle who has attended many gatherings protesting the state of Israel’s violent actions, I want to offer a different perspective.

We must, once and for all, get clear that Jews, a diverse and diasporic people, hold and have always held a variety of opinions about Zionism, and that we, as Jews, cannot and will not be made synonymous with the Israeli state.

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Reflecting on George Floyd, One Year Later

by M. Anthony Davis


Today is the one-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd. As we take time to reflect on the multitude of events that took place in the aftermath, it is important to remember — Floyd did not make a sacrifice. He did not choose to give his life in hopes that his death would lead to a national racial reckoning that would catapult our nation, and a large part of the world, into a summer of protest. George Floyd wanted to live. He literally pleaded for his life. He is not a martyr. He is a victim. 

In reflecting on Floyd’s death at the hands of Derek Chauvin, and the resulting protests and supposed U.S. “racial awakening,” it is hard for me to find a bright spot for this column. Police continue to kill citizens at the same rate they did before Floyd’s murder. In fact, since George Floyd was killed last year, 1,068 more people have been killed by police in the United States. According to data collected by the Washington Post, police have consistently shot and killed about 1,000 people per year since 2015. In 2021, we are currently on track to continue that fatal trend. And despite the nationwide movement in the wake of Floyd’s death calling to defund the police, many major municipalities, some of which vowed to defund, have failed to do so or defunded at miniscule rates.  

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OPINION: Stopping Disaster Gentrification Post-Pandemic Will Require Robust Action

by Gregory Davis


It was one year ago this month that a journalist thrust into the ether an idea that the pandemic was going to have a disproportionate impact on People of Color. He shared stories about friends and their current and impending struggles. One poignant detail he shared: “The coronavirus has magnified stubbornly unbalanced accounts between those with plenty and those barely holding on.” 

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