It’s Friday — time to review the week’s news with Joni Balter, Eli Sanders and Knute Berger. The US Supreme Court hears arguments in two cases that may reshape the legal landscape for same-sex marriages. Are DOMA's days numbered? Olympia kicks into gear as Governor Inslee releases his budget proposal. Plus, a fatal crash in Northeast Seattle highlights the trouble with DUI enforcement, the back-and-forth over where to put Seattle's compost continues and Eli Sanders buys a drone. What stories caught your attention this week? Call us at 206.543.5869 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The local folk/rock band The Maldives have performed everywhere from the back of a flatbed truck to the stages of Sasquatch, Bumbershoot, Capitol Hill Block Party and SXSW.
The Maldives are a seven-member band that started with lead singer and guitarist Jason Dodson over six years ago, and have established themselves as a quintessential band in the Northwest music scene. Jason Dodson joins us in studio to talk and perform live.
Katherine Bouton was going deaf by age 30. During meetings at The New York Times, where she was a section editor, she had trouble hearing what her colleagues were saying during meetings. Shouting, she says, didn't help her hear any better.
Latin America has been Catholic pretty much since the time of the conquistadores. But that tradition may come to an end soon, as evangelical Christianity vies to become the number one religion in countries such as Guatemala. Today, we hear from one Guatemalan town that converted en masse.
Other stories on KUOW Presents, Thursday, March 28:
This month, hosts Sarah Rosenthal and Kamna Shastri bring you stories about the reality of human trafficking in the Seattle area.
First we hear from Kathleen Morris, an advocate for trafficking survivors with the International Rescue Committee. She tells us what human trafficking is and what to look for in a trafficking situation. Then we hear an incredible story from Yasmin Christopher, a law student at Seattle University whose family was trafficked to rural Grays Harbor County from Bangladesh. Finally, RadioActive reporter Katherine Sims brings us to Westlake Center in downtown Seattle where a vigil is held once a month to stand up against human trafficking. She talks to one high school student, Emily Kubota, who has been going to the vigil for two years.
Leslie Helm was born and raised in Yokohama, Japan. Most of his family members are of European descent, and you would be hard pressed to look into his face and see his half-Japanese grandparents reflected back. When he adopted Japanese children, he started exploring his own roots. Leslie Helm takes us along on his journey as a "Yokohama Yankee" — a story that outlines the racial and economic tensions that defined US and Japanese relations for much of the 19th and 20th centuries.
How does the universe create itself out of nothing, then keep going for billions of remarkable, evolving millennia? Can you even have "nothing," or do you have to bring God into the equation? These are the kinds of questions that arise when you're trying to explain the origin of life in the universe. Questions that Howard Bloom — science prodigy, former PR man for Prince, friend of Buzz Aldrin — tackles in his new book, “The God Problem.”
This 1865 celebration of emancipation by artist Thomas Nast portrays an optimistic view of the future of blacks in the US. Strong families were considered important to reconstruction. But gathering around the hearth with family was in reality much more complicated. Slave holders had routinely broken up families, and the dislocated slaves often remarried. This legacy complicated family structure so much that the federal government had to step in to help sort out who was married to whom.
Before emancipation, slaves couldn’t legally marry other slaves. Of course, that didn’t stop them from getting married in their own way. But those informal marriages were seldom recognized by slave holders, who broke up families regularly as they bought and sold individuals. After being dislocated, many slaves settled down with new families, often getting married several times.
After the civil war, blacks gained the right to legally marry. But the patchwork of local and state laws regulating marriage made it nearly impossible to sort out the undocumented and often conflicting claims about which former slaves were married to whom. So on behalf of ex-slaves, the federal government stepped in, setting up bureaus to help sort out the mess.
After reconstruction, federal authorities handed control of marriage back to the states. But this episode from history helps frame the current debate on same-sex marriage. History’s lesson: Usually, the federal government will leave things to the states. But if the federal government decides things have become too messy or inequitable, it may step in.
After the Sandy Hook school shooting when 20 children between the ages of 5 and 10 years old were killed in Newtown, Connecticut, some organizations, including the National Rifle Association, recommended armed guards.
Snohomish County is putting armed police officers in county schools, but the Snohomish County Sheriff says this decision is not influenced by the NRA. Ross Reynolds and Sheriff John Lovick discuss how six armed officers rotating through more than 100 schools spread out over 2,000 square miles will potentially work.
Vancouver Sun political correspondent Vaughn Palmer brings us the latest news from Canada. Film critic Robert Horton reviews what's happening on the silver screen. Then, Michael Parks wraps up the region's recent economic news.
NPR's Nina Totenberg: On what happens if the court declines to decide.
(We most recently updated the top of this post at 1:45 p.m. ET.)
There seem to be four solid votes on the Supreme Court — and possibly a fifth — to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act that bars federal recognition of same-sex marriages, NPR's Nina Totenberg told us after Wednesday's oral arguments before the nine justices.
But there's a big "if."
As in: There's possibly a 5-vote majority to strike down the law if the court first decides it should even issue an opinion.
Seattle is nearing the end of a years-long process to rezone its South Lake Union neighborhood. One of the final points of discussion is whether to increase a fee paid by developers in order to build taller than the city’s height limits. The money pays for affordable housing in the city. Some Seattle City Council members support a fee increase, but opponents say it’s too late in the game to make changes and risk cooling off growth in one of Seattle’s fastest growing neighborhoods. We talk it over with Councilmember Nick Licata and developer A-P Hurd.
In her poem "What Stays Here," Colleen McElroy imagines life as a female soldier who must choose between loyalty to herself, and loyalty to a military code that says "keep quiet" and "get along." Like many of the poems in McElroy's ninth collection, "Here I Throw Down My Heart," (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012) the poem awakens us to voices and stories we might otherwise never hear with such intimacy and power.