Category Archives: Voices

OPINION: The Acceptance

by Jasmine M. Pulido


In the 2020 presidential election, Trump won the second-highest number of votes by any U.S. presidential candidate in history. Though he still ended up losing the race, this number is nothing to sneeze at. I heard a general outcry of surprise and shock at these statistics, at how close this country was to a second Trump term, particularly from my white progressive liberal peers here in Seattle.

But why are people still so surprised? 

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‘Black and Center’ — Collaboration, Color, and Care

by Jasmine J Mahmoud


Election anxiety marked my beginning of last month. Like many others, I grew fixated on the results trickling in state by state, county by county, block by block across the week. That first November week felt endless, for lack of sleep and newly emerging, quickly chronic, routines. At midnight, and 3 a.m., and 5 a.m., I refreshed electoral maps of Georgia and Pennsylvania. With daylight, I watched television news on mute, while working on my laptop. At all hours, the buzz of “breaking news” kept my body on alert. When Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were finally confirmed on November 7, unfamiliar feelings of relief and elation emerged, nevertheless battling existing currents of anxiety and dread. Last week, I ate Thanksgiving dinner with my partner, thinking about the atrocities hidden by that holiday including stolen Indigenous land. 

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Tracy Castro-Gill Is Insuppressible, and So Is Ethnic Studies

by Ari Robin McKenna

This is the sixth in a series of seven articles about ethnic studies. Find the first five here.


On January 30, 2020, during the whir of a work day, the Seattle Public Schools Ethnic Studies Program Manager, Tracy Castro-Gill, was placed on paid administrative leave. She was told she needed to be out of the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence (JSCEE) effective immediately. As Castro-Gill was escorted out of the building with all of her belongings, she remembers that time seemed to go in reverse as she passed coworkers she’d called out for their actions or words supporting systemic racism — in a district office that has presided over a school system with decades of appalling racial disparities. The Ethnic Studies Advisory Group (ESAG) that Castro-Gill had assembled to develop K–12 ethnic studies content began a boycott of SPS the next day in protest. Mandated by a unanimous 2017 School Board of Directors order, the Advisory Group’s work has remained on a district hard drive somewhere inside the bunker-like JSCEE, despite the winds of change swirling outside. A white man Castro-Gill worked with later mocked her with casual finality: “How’s that call-out culture working out for you, Tracy?”

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Sunday Comix: #GivingTuesday Edition

by Brett Hamil


All jokes aside, as an Emerald reader, you understand the critical role that the Emerald plays in helping to lift up our BIPOC communities.  We cannot do this work without you. Support Black-led, community-based media this GivingTuesday with a one-time or monthly gift and join our Rainmaker Family today!


VISIT: seattleemerald.org/donate to make your tax-deductible donation today!


Brett Hamil is a writer, cartoonist and performer living on the South End of Seattle. He produces the weekly comedy show Joketellers Union and the political comedy talk show The Seattle Process. The Seattle Weekly (RIP) once called him “the city’s premier political comic.”

Ask a Therapist: Want to Help Your Frustrated Kids Survive This Hell Year? Try Encouraging Their Meltdowns

by Liz Covey, LMHC


Question: Help! Lazy monsters have taken over my house! In other words, my kids aren’t doing so good. All they ever want to do is play video games or watch YouTube. When I ask them to do something like a chore, or even their homework, they bite my head off. What can we do to make it through this long winter?

Continue reading Ask a Therapist: Want to Help Your Frustrated Kids Survive This Hell Year? Try Encouraging Their Meltdowns

Sunday Comix: Seattle Exit Interview

by Brett Hamil


You can now order “Modest Incremental Change NOW,” a collection of my Sunday Comix spanning the entire messed-up summer of revolution, copaganda and liberal cooption in Seattle. Order your copy at: https://bretthamil.bigcartel.com/


Brett Hamil is a writer, cartoonist and performer living on the South End of Seattle. He produces the weekly comedy show Joketellers Union and the political comedy talk show The Seattle Process. The Seattle Weekly (RIP) once called him “the city’s premier political comic.”

OPINION: Washington Can’t Wait for Affordable Housing

by Ben Mitchell


In 1990 Washington State passed the Growth Management Act to help our cities and counties accommodate rapid growth while protecting what makes our state a great place to live: vibrant and diverse cities, beautiful wilderness and coastal areas, and working farmland.

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OPINION: Becoming a Good Ancestor

by Colleen Echohawk 


The elders always have something to teach us. Sometimes I am so busy, worried, and stressed that I miss it. I miss their quiet and unassuming teaching steeped in hard years of experience that gently guides us.  Recently, I stood outside of the Chief Seattle Club at a table, watching the line of relatives who have been experiencing homelessness; they were waiting for us to open the food line. The line was expansive, reaching all the way down the block. This population already struggles with food insecurity, but the pandemic has worsened an already tragic situation. Hundreds of our homeless relatives were hungry, waiting for our staff at the Chief Seattle Club to bring out nutritious and delicious meals to quell their hunger and offer kind words of support and comfort in an unsupportive and incredibly uncomfortable situation.

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Articles of Faith: On the Margins

by Rev. Adam Lawrence Dyer


(Articles of Faith is a regular column presenting the voices of clergy members. The following is taken from a sermon delivered November 22, 2020.)

This year Transgender Day of Remembrance, November 20, and Thanksgiving, November 26, are within one week of each other. I can only imagine what it must be like to be both transgender and Indigenous and have these two dates so close together. From my view, it is a full seven days of gruesome and painful mourning.

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When We Elect Black Women Leaders

by Melia LaCour


It took several attempts before I could finally write this article. What do the 2020 election victories for Black women Democrats mean to me as a Black, mixed-race woman? Each time, I erupted in explosive grief. A complex grief that holds a thousand stories.

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