Today is the Fifth-Annual National Day of Racial Healing. Across the country, thousands of people will gather to engage in racial healing programs, discussions, and virtual forums in service of creating a more equitable country.
Launched in 2016 by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in partnership with hundreds of racial justice activists across the United States, today’s observance comes at a time when our hearts are yearning for it most. With violent surges of white nationalism, the continued devastating rampage of COVID-19 disproportionately impacting Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), the sanctioned murder of Black people, many of us are feeling unfathomable grief, righteous rage, and utter depletion. The need for racial healing is urgent.
So, what does racial healing mean in the context of now? And why is racial healing important to our movements for justice?
Blackbird singing in the dead of night Take these broken wings and learn to fly All your life You were only waiting for this moment to arise.
Blackbird singing in the dead of night Take these sunken eyes and learn to see All your life You were only waiting for this moment to be free.
Blackbird fly, blackbird fly Into the light of the dark black night.
These lyrics from the classic tribute to the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s by the Beatles pop into my head every time I see a photo of Stacey Abrams. My throat gets dry, tears well up, and I get goose bumps. How prescient those words are.
Washingtonians aged 65 and older and, additionally, those aged 50 and older who live in “multigenerational households” are now eligible to be vaccinated against the novel coronavirus under Phase 1B — Tier 1 effective immediately, Gov. Jay Inslee announced in a press conference on Jan. 18 (“multigenerational household,” per the schedule update, was not immediately defined). He also announced a slew of other vaccination schedule changes, including statewide mass vaccinations that will begin as soon as next week and the creation of a private-public partnership, in order to ramp up to administering 45,000 vaccines per day as quickly as possible.
Inslee said that allowing people aged 65 and older as well as those 50 and older — specifically those 50 and older who are living in what was referred to during the press conference as “multigenerational households” — to get the vaccine sooner than originally planned is meant to reflect a more equitable distribution of vaccines. That said, all persons wishing to learn their vaccination eligibility should go to the State’s online vaccine eligibility assessor, called Phase Finder, and fill out the questionnaire. (Note: As of this publication, the website seems to be experiencing some technical difficulties.)
Inslee also said that once roughly half of people eligible to get the vaccine under Phase 1B — Tier 1 have gotten vaccinated, the State’s vaccine providers will be allowed to offer vaccines to people deemed eligible in Phase 1B’s Tiers 2, 3, and 4, in order to increase efficiency.
During the 2019 legislative session, two state senators from South King County sponsored a bill that aimed to improve environmental justice for all of Washington’s residents, but only some of the policy actually became a reality.
This year’s new legislative session, which opened last week, has already seen numerous senators co-sponsor the same policy — including one of the bill’s original champions, the 37th Legislative District’s Rebecca Saldaña — and reintroduce the bill in an attempt to lay the groundwork for achieving a universal standard of environmental health quality across every community in Washington. The Healthy Environment for All (HEAL) Act, Saldaña says, would lay the critical groundwork to effectively implement any environmental legislation that is passed in the State Senate.
His dreams spoke to our hearts and minds. His dreams spoke to our imaginations.
“What we have to do is vision-dream … If we imagine what is possible, that imagining can change the way we exist in the present.” —Eddie Glaude Jr.
In commemoration of Dr. King’s 50th death anniversary, Eddie Glaude Jr, James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor and chair of the Department of African American Studies at Princeton University, discussed Dr. King’s life with actor, comedian, and political commentator, D.L. Hughley on Hughley’s podcast in 2018. As two Black men, they talked not only about what Dr. King accomplished but also about how his ideas were much more radical than what gets taught to us in grade school. At one point, Glaude had the following to say.
In anticipation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, various virtual events are being hosted in Seattle to honor the civil rights leader. From spoken word programs to virtual walks, there are multiple opportunities to honor MLK Jr.’s legacy this year despite the constraints of social distancing.
Intentionalist is built on one simple idea: where we spend our money matters. We make it easy to find, learn about, and support small businesses and the diverse people behind them through everyday decisions about where we eat, drink, and shop. #SpendLikeItMatters
As we enter the new year, there’s one thing that’s already clear: We’re going to need our energy to get through it. And what could be more energizing than a carefully crafted cup of coffee from a local South Seattle coffee shop?
Independent coffee shops are so much more than the coffee they serve. Pre-pandemic, they were our go-to meeting spots when we wanted to catch up with a loved one, community organizing spaces, and where we set up our office for the day. It may be awhile until we can fully embrace everything these special neighborhood spaces have to offer, but for now, we can still enjoy a delicious drink made by people who genuinely care.
One of the frequent targets of President Donald Trump’s ire lately has been the cryptic “Section 230.” Last month, Trump threatened to veto the entire budget for the nation’s military forces if Congress didn’t include a repeal of Section 230 in the bill. This week’s “long read” is a deep dive into Section 230, its origins, and the ongoing controversies it begets that extend far beyond Trump’s personal vendetta.