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Dr. Bob Hughes of Seattle University and Yoshiko Harden of Seattle Central. Hughes and Harden were meeting at a Starbucks on Broadway in Seattle when someone came in and unfurled a string of racial slurs and explicitives at Harden.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

So my colleague and I were catching up after not seeing each other for a while.  

She’s just accepted a new position as an administrator at the community college up the street from where I work. I wanted to welcome her to the neighborhood and her new job.  

Orphans at the Ghenh Rang Orphanage in South Vietnam before Operation Babylift. Julie Davis, who lives in Minneapolis, belies that's her looking at the camera.
Courtesy of Julie Davis

Julie Davis, who was airlifted to Seattle from Saigon in 1975, shares her story. This week marks the 40th anniversary of Operation Babylift, the mass evacuation of children from South Vietnam. 

I was just a year old when a Boeing 747 airlifted me and hundreds of other babies from Saigon. We headed to Seattle, Houston, Minneapolis.

Thirty years later, I returned to Vietnam to find the orphanage where I had been dropped off just after my birth.

Mama, I Was Supposed To Be Born A Girl

Aug 6, 2017
Marlo Mack and her daughter. Marlo's daughter is part of a University of Washington study on the lives of trans children.
Courtesy of Marlo Mack

My son was barely 3 years old when he informed me that … I didn’t have a son.

He looked me square in the eyes and said, “Mama, I think something went wrong when I was in your tummy, because I was supposed to be born a girl, but I was born a boy instead.” 

For Elijah Brown, the Rainier Community Center and Playfield in Genesee is a paradox — a place that nurtured him and terrified him growing up.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Elijah Brown was 9 when he saw a man get shot dead.

Kanwalpreet steps out of a white limo. He and Madhuri were married at the Gurudwara Singh Sabha of Washington in Renton.
Victor Zerga Photography

Victor Zerga is a Seattle wedding photographer who specializes in "cultural weddings." He started taking photos with a point-and-shoot camera as a guest at his family's big Ukranian weddings, and eight years ago, his hobby became a career. 

Jannie Anderson, the author of this essay.
Courtesy of Jannie Anderson

This might come across as whining, but I don't really care.

I deactivated my Facebook account Wednesday after I read that President Trump was kicking all transgender people out of the military. I wanted to step aside and become invisible, but I have something to say, so I came back to write this:

Businesswoman Mary Keller Wynn came up with the Natte Latte coffee stand in 1999, which launched the Pacific Northwest's propensity for sexy espresso stands.
Courtesy of Mary Keller Wynn

Are bikini baristas a Pacific Northwest phenomenon?

Jake Koukel from Puyallup asked KUOW’s Local Wonder team to investigate.

Jenny Durkan, former U.S. attorney, is running for Seattle mayor this year. Consultant Cathy Allen said she and collegues have been trying to convince her for the last decade to run for office.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

If you see ads in print or online for Jenny Durkan, they may have been paid for by her own campaign — she's the top fundraiser in the race to be Seattle's next mayor.

Or the ads may be sponsored by an independent campaign, “People for Jenny Durkan,” with money from Seattle businesses. 

Apartment buildings in the University District, Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

One thing all of the candidates running for Seattle City Council Position 8 agree on: The rent is too damn high. But they're divided on what to do about it. 

Foreclosure housing house
Flickr Photo/Taber Andrew Bain (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/6WB4v4

Seattle’s real estate market is booming, but contrary to what you might think, foreclosures are still happening. Foreclosures can be disruptive in neighborhoods.

Last year, about 700 people in Seattle lost their homes to banks. The city wants to help them. 


Jenny Durkan is among 21 candidates running for Seattle mayor.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

For a decade, a political consultant harangued Jenny Durkan to run for office.  

Mike McGinn, the former Seattle mayor, is running again. 'This city belongs to all of us,' he said.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

Mike McGinn, former mayor of Seattle, was known around town for biking everywhere. (His security detail also rode with him.) 

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses.

The first thing we want to say about Nikkita Oliver, of the People's Party of Seattle, is that she announced she would run for mayor before a sex abuse lawsuit was filed against Ed Murray in April.  

Yes, Bob Hasegawa, sitting Washington state senator and candidate for Seattle mayor, vaped for this photo.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

Bob Hasegawa, state senator and proud Teamster (former commercial truck driver), is a third generation Seattleite. He grew up on Beacon Hill, still lives there now and bemoans the days when kids played in the street and he walked two blocks to the corner store to buy his dad a pack of cigarettes.

Cary Moon, an urban planner, says we're in a civil rights moment here in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

Cary Moon is an urban planner, remembered by city wonks for imagining Highway 99 as a waterfront street (rather than the tunnel it will be).

Courtesy of Shannon Hargis

Picture a Metro bus of new people entering Seattle every day. That’s roughly how much the city is growing.*

One of those newbies is Shannon Hargis.

KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

The Trump Administration’s crackdown on undocumented immigrants is causing some people to avoid seeking medical care.  Public Health Seattle-King County is taking steps to reassure patients.


It appears one of the judges got cold feet and switched his vote -- perhaps after receiving his income tax form in the mail.
Animation by Drew Christie

Seattle officials took a big step to change Seattle's tax structure this month by passing an income tax on high earners. It’s the first income tax in Washington state.

A former state Supreme Court justice says the plan could face a tough road in the courts.

Dozens of murals hang on the walls at the Northwest Detention Center. They're painted by detainees, and the designs must be approved by staff. Painting is also considered a voluntary job, and the artists are paid $1 per day for their work.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The policy changes came fast as President Donald Trump took office.

In Seattle, a city where roughly one in five people are immigrants, protests erupted. First, when Trump ordered a crackdown on so-called sanctuary cities for undocumented immigrants.

Seattle Police Officer Louis Chan, center, talks with a man in Ballard about his erratic and threatening behavior. Chan is partnered with a social worker to help deescalate volatile situations.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

When it comes to policing, there’s a lot of history in the race for Seattle mayor.

Two of the candidates, Jenny Durkan and Mike McGinn, have faced off before. They negotiated the city’s consent decree between the Justice Department and the city of Seattle.

Police and city staff arrived in the morning of Friday, March 11, 2016 to force out the remaining 16 residents atat the former Nickelsville camp on South Dearborn Street.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Whoever is elected as the next mayor of Seattle will inherit a growing homelessness crisis.

Perhaps the most visible markers of this crisis are the tents that line the freeways and nestle in the city’s green spaces.

Jacinta Morales learned she was pregnant after she was processed into ICE detention. She said she was happy to be pregnant.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

She wears a yellow uniform, loose, with a sweatshirt underneath. Her long hair, braided in tight cornrows near her temples. Her handshake, timid.

We talk in a small meeting room at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, with her attorney and an interpreter.


$360,000 is the asking price for this 740 square foot house in the Rainier Beach neighborhood of Seattle
KUOW Photos / Megan Farmer

Sonny Kwan, a real estate agent in Seattle, was shocked recently by a listing he saw just off Rainier Avenue South.

Top candidates for Seattle mayor debate in a forum hosted by KING 5 and KUOW.
KING 5

Are Seattle taxes too high? And where should the city look for future funding? Those were the big questions for six of the city’s candidates for mayor Monday, at a debate aired live on KUOW and KING 5.


Adhering to Seattle's climate action plan would require reducing tailpipe exhaust 15 times faster than the 0.5 percent a year Seattle has actually achieved.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle leaders love to talk about fighting climate change.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, left, walks past his husband, Michael Shiosaki, center, and his attorney, Bob Sulkin, to make a statement to media members Friday, April 7, 2017, in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

City Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez said Monday that Seattle Mayor Ed Murray should consider stepping down after new revelations about the sex abuse allegations against him.

Diontae Moore-Lyons, 17, right, is escorted back to his unit by manager Shawn Northcutt at Green Hill School in Chehalis, Wash., on Wednesday, May 10, 2017. Green Hill School is a medium/maximum security, fenced facility for teenage male offenders.
KUOW Photo/Dan DeLong

When black youth enter the criminal justice system, most of the people in authority they come into contact with — social workers, lawyers, the jury — are white.

Diontae Moore-Lyons, 17, is currently incarcerated at Green Hill School in Chehalis, Washington, the state's maximum security facility for juveniles.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray speaks Friday, Oct. 7, 2016, at the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

A child protection investigator in Oregon concluded in 1984 that Seattle Mayor Ed Murray had abused a boy in his care. 

In documents made public by The Seattle Times, the investigator said the future mayor of Seattle should never be a foster parent again.

Earl Lancaster of Earl’s Cuts & Styles, used to be surrounded by other black-owned businesses, and a working-class community. Today, most of those businesses are gone.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Earl Lancaster has been cutting hair at the corner of 23rd and Union for a quarter of a century.

"Some of the highlights have been cutting some of the Sonics, Mariners. Cutting young kids and turn into fathers and cutting their kids’ hair. It’s been amazing," Lancaster said as he glided his clippers along a man's scalp.


The new 24 hour homeless shelter accommodates people with pets, partners, belongings and addiction issues
KUOW Photo/Kate Walters

On a frigid day last year, I walked into Seattle’s largest homeless camp. As my breath turned to fog, I wondered why anyone would choose to live in a tent under the freeway. Why not go to a shelter?


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