Turkey Day is rapidly approaching, as is Black Friday, which, according to Mrs. O, now starts sometime Thursday afternoon. She asked innocently whether there is a football game scheduled around the opening of the Black Thursday/Friday shopping spree. The 49ers, of course, will be playing the Seahawks about that time. I don't think Mrs. O was interested in the NFL — or even how well my Fantasy Football teams have been doing this year. Now for today's Wild Card …
A law enforcement officer watches over Morehouse College students, who marched from campus, raise their fists in the air joining others in a rally and protest at the CNN Center, Tuesday in Atlanta, the day after a grand jury's decision not to indict a white Ferguson, Mo., police officer who killed Michael Brown, an unarmed black teen. (AP Photo/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Curtis Compton)
Top Comment — Scootermom (RE: Protesters torch Ferguson businesses): I find the rage understandable. The black community just got told, in a really condescending way, that their lives aren't worth much. Again. I don't like rioting. I lived through LA in 1992, and it wasn't much fun. But where is the outrage when Penn State students rioted because Joe Paterno got fired? I don't recall everyone calling those nice college students “thugs.” Nutbags in Nevada were pointing guns at law enforcement over some scrawny cattle, and they were portrayed as patriots. Idiots in Texas take their machine guns shopping with them, and they aren't thugs, but citizens exercising their second amendment rights. It seems to me that the word “thug” is reserved for people of color. If you don't see that as a problem, you really don't understand what's happening in Ferguson, and the mounting rage over police shooting unarmed men, women and children in communities of color.
Hunting for a wild Christmas tree is a Thanksgiving tradition for many families, and the Panhandle National Forest wants people to know permits are on sale now. “The day after Thanksgiving and the day before Thanksgiving are usually our biggest days for Christmas tree permits,” said Jason Kirchner, spokesman for the PNF. “We are closed on Thanksgiving Day, so if you are going out on that day you might want get one before that.” Fines for cutting a Christmas tree without a permit are $125 plus court cost. The $5 tree tags are available at the PNF office and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management offices located at 3815 Schreiber Way, or the Coeur d'Alene River Ranger District's Fernan office located at 2502 E. Sherman Ave/Jeff Selle, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here. (Coeur d'Alene Press photo by Tess Freeman: Fresh blanket of snow covers trees near Fernan Saddle)
Question: For years, I cut my own trees, in the forest or at a Christmas tree far on Ramsey Road, north of H53. Now, I help Mrs. O drag out a fake tree that has seen its better days. How about you? Cut your own. Buy one from a tree lot? Fake tree?
Time 2 Vote …
Ayanna Williams displays her 23 inch (58 centimeter) nails at a book launch in London recently. The 56-year-old stars in a book entitled “Ripley's Believe it or Not! 2015 Annual, Reality Shock.” You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)
Monday Winner — Bubba32, with 11 likes: “It turns out that he wasn't happy to see you after all, it was just a giant stick up his kilt.” You can see Monday Photo and read all 9 Cutline Contest entries here.
Former Spokane County deputy prosecutor Marriya Wright pleaded guilty to second-degree rendering criminal assistance today in front of a visiting judge from Whitman County. Wright was accused of helping convicted felon Matthew Baumrucker (pictured) evade police in March. He was wanted on a warrant and on suspicion of assault at the time. Investigators discovered thousands of text messages between the two and a photo of Wright in a bikini was found in Baumrucker’s jail cell. The prosecution of Wright’s case was handled by the Attorney General’s Office at the request of the Spokane County Prosecutor’s Office. Wright was sentenced to 364 days in jail with 364 days suspended and ordered to pay a $1,500 fine, with half of the amount suspended/SR. More here.
Question: Do you think Wright has had second thoughts about this relationship?
“It’s tempting to think of this year’s holiday show at the Coeur d’Alene Resort as 'A Travolta Family Christmas,' posts Carolyn Lamberson/7 Blog. “After all, the show is produced by Ellen Travolta, who also appears, along with her sister, Margaret, and her husband, Jack Bannon. Ellen Travolta would be quick to correct your assumption. 'I Remember Christmas' is an ensemble show, she said. Full post here. (SR photo)
HucksOnline numbers (for Monday, Nov. 24): 6488 page-views/4045 unique views
Four bald eagles were counted today at Lake Coeur d'Alene in the weekly fall survey conducted during the annual fall-winter congregation at the northeast corner of the lake. That's up from zero birds counted last Wednesday by U.S. Bureau of Land Management biologist Carrie Hugo last Wednesday in her first survey of the season. Eagles were at Higgens Point in the Beauty Bay area, she said. For decades, the eagles have provided a popular wildlife-viewing attraction as the birds are lured from mid-November into January to feast on the spawning kokanee that stack up in Wolf Lodge Bay/Rich Landers, Outdoors. More here. (Photo: A reader submitted this photo of a bald eagle snatching a Lake CdA kokanee to the S-R eagle web page)
A federal judge on Monday issued a 60-day stay in a wedding chapel’s civil rights lawsuit against the city of Coeur d’Alene concerning same-sex marriage and a discrimination law. Attorneys for Donald and Everlynn Knapp, owners of Hitching Post Weddings LLC, and for the city both had asked for the break in the case in order to discuss a potential settlement. U.S. Magistrate Judge Ronald E. Bush granted the stay, which gives the city until Jan. 9 to respond to the suit if a settlement is not reached by then. The Oct. 17 suit claims the city is unconstitutionally forcing the Knapps to violate their religious beliefs by performing same-sex marriages/SR. (SR file photo, of Hitching Post owner Don Knapp)
Question: How do you think this is going to play out?
A hundred years after soldiers briefly laid down their arms at Christmastime during World War I, the Modern Theater Coeur d’Alene brings to the stage “All is Calm,” a musical representation of that incredible time in history. Director Abbey Crawford has assembled a talented all-male cast of singers for this poignant epistolary tale. The mix of songs, all sung a cappella, range from war tunes like “Keep the Home Fires Burning” to holiday carols in other languages, such as “O Tannenbaum” in German and “O Holy Night” in French. “Calm” is a showcase for this strong ensemble cast of singers who blend well. The songs are punctuated by snippets of accounts by World War I soldiers on both sides of the conflict, which the performers recite in each soldier’s accent/Sandra Hosking, SR correspondent. More here.
Question: It's going to take awhile for me to get used to the new name Modern Theater Coeur d'Alene. How about you?
A few days ago, Linda Lantzy/Idaho Scenic Images, posted this photo of the Coeur d'Alene Resort boardwalk from a few years ago and wrote: “It's kinda dreary out there today. This is from a different day a few years ago of the CDA Resort boardwalk. I thought it was fitting for today.” For those looking for calendars and greeting cards, Linda has an assortment available at her Idaho Scenic Images Facebook page.
The recount has been completed in Nez Perce County in the District 6 House race, and the outcome was the same as it was on Election Night: Freshman Rep. Thyra Stevenson (pictured), R-Lewiston, has lost to Democratic challenger Dan Rudolph. The final figures from the recount showed Rudolph beating Stevenson by 25 votes, down from the 26-vote margin in the final, unofficial count on Election Night; Stevenson gained one vote in the recount. The Lewiston Tribune covered the recount and has a full report here. … Unsuccessful GOP challenger Mike Kingsley had considered asking for a recount in the same county after his 48-vote loss to House Minority Leader John Rusche, D-Lewiston in District 6, but Rusche reported on Facebook on Saturday that Kingsley told him he’d decided against it/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. More here.
Like most members of Congress, Republican Reps. Howard Coble of North Carolina and Doc Hastings of Washington state are millionaires. They also share something else: They’ll retire at the end of the year after turning down lucrative congressional pensions. Coble, 83, is surrendering a pension estimated at $130,500 a year, while Hastings, 73, is giving up roughly $53,000 a year. But if history is any indication, most departing members of Congress will conduct business as usual, cashing in on a retirement system that critics say is too generous and costs taxpayers too much/Rob Hotakainen, McClatchy Washington Bureau, Tri-City Herald. More here.
Question: Wouldn't it be nice if we all could set our own salaries, and health insurance and pension plans?
At Boise State Public Radio, Adam Cotterell reports: “Idaho resort towns like Coeur d’Alene, Sun Valley and McCall had higher crime rates than most of the state’s other towns and cities according to the FBI’s annual report of crime stats released this week. Kevin Wolff, who teaches criminal justice at John Jay College in New York, says many resort towns are in the same boat. 'There might be on season and off season where the population, during those times of year, or during special events might swell tremendously thus impacting the crime rate,' Wolff says. The problem is, Wolff says, that crime stats don’t take into account people who don’t live in a given town full time.” More here.
Question: You knew Coeur d'Alene wasn't all that dangerous, didn't you?
A South Ogden father is suing Weber School District after his daughter was passed over for the Bonneville High School women’s basketball team. Attorney Rick Westmoreland said his daughter wasn’t cut because of her skill, but because of a district policy that allows just two ninth-graders from each junior high to play at the high school level. “She was number three,” Westmoreland said. “So the coach says, ‘We’d love to have you, but we can’t because of the policy.’ ” In a lawsuit filed last week in Utah’s 2nd District Court, Westmoreland accuses the district of violating the constitutional rights of his daughter, who is not named in the lawsuit and whom he declined to identify. She is a student at South Ogden Junior High/Salt Lake Tribune. More here.
Question: What life's lesson is this father teaching his daughter?
Defenders of Wildlife issued the following press release to media moments ago: “After significant public opposition and in the face of legal challenges from Defenders of Wildlife and other conservation organizations, today the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) withdrew its permit to allow an annual commercial 'predator derby' to take place on millions of acres of public lands in Idaho, beginning this January. BLM’s decision comes after Defenders of Wildlife and Advocates for the West sued the agency two weeks ago. Furthermore, BLM received over 100,000 comments from Defenders of Wildlife members and other conservationists, strongly opposing the proposed predator derby. The derby targeted a wide range of predators from wolves and coyotes, down to weasels and skunks, and would have awarded prizes to people who killed the most predators and the most highly rated predators.” More here.
Question: Do you agree/disagree with the action taken by the federal government to rescind approval for predator derby?
From his perch high above Sherman Avenue, Don Sausser snapped this photo of workers putting the giant Coeur d'Alene resort wreath in place for the lighting ceremony scheduled for Friday evening.
Question: Which part do you like best about downtown activities on Black Friday evening — the parade, the caroling, the fireworks, the tree lighting or the Festival of the Trees?
Coeur d'Alene Police Facebook: On (Monday) two separate victims reported someone used a large rock to smash out the rear window of their vehicle. One incident occurred in the 1200 block of Lakeside at approximately 6:40 p.m. The other incident happened in the 1200 block of E. Birch at approximately 7 p.m. No items were taken from the vehicles but the rear windows will need to be repaired.
Question: Do you do a happy dance when the snow begins piling up at this time of the year?