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Stories tagged: Shawn Vestal


From cradle to Maeve: A Spokane fire captain’s long road to transition

For decades, John Griffith was, to the outside world at least, an ordinary guy: a veteran of the Air Force, captain in the Spokane Fire Department, a husband and a …


Shawn Vestal: ‘Live PD’ paints Spokane at its ugliest

The reality-TV shows “Live PD” and “COPS” have gleaned plenty of footage in working with local police agencies – and have helped fuel an image of the city as a …


Shawn Vestal: Spokane schools should stop tiptoeing through sex ed controversy

Not too long ago, a relatively small but relatively loud group of people approached the Spokane School Board to oppose a planned sex-ed curriculum. The result: The process of adopting …


UPDATED: Tue., Jan. 30, 2018, 12:53 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: The American Redoubt is alive and well in the Idaho Capitol as ‘Bundy sniper’ receives hero’s welcome

An Idaho man who has become a symbolic hero in the American Redoubt for aiming his assault rifle at the feds during the Bundy ranch standoff in 2014 – and …


Shawn Vestal: When cows were the cornerstone of income inequality

One of the earliest and most potent forces dividing the haves and have-nots may have pretty humble roots: the agricultural beast of burden.


Shawn Vestal: If you think tax cuts are unleashing the economy, wait till you see the pot numbers

The new federal tax cuts should add a jolt to the state’s economy, a new revenue forecast says. Not a huge jolt. Not a marijuana-sized jolt.


Shawn Vestal: How did a system – and a community – fail a boy so completely?

Long after the fact, little Wyatt’s neighbors told police that his parents treated him like “crap.” His father, Melvin Bledsoe, 27, and his stepmother, Joy Tamika Anderson, 30, are facing …


UPDATED: Thu., Jan. 18, 2018, 6:23 a.m.

Shawn Vestal: This is at the Spokane Public Library?

We’re off to the library tonight. Not looking for books. Not checking out DVDs. Not planning to Google stuff on the computer. Not seeking to check out another installment of …


Shawn Vestal: Only in Wonderland is Congress insuring children’s health

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers’ claim that the House reauthorized the Children’s Health Insurance Program is fit for a fact in Wonderland.


UPDATED: Fri., Jan. 12, 2018, 2:40 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: Mayor Condon should have argued his case against city’s new campaign finance law

Rather than making a public appeal tied to his opposition to the new campaign finance legislation, Mayor David Condon stayed strategically quiet during the two months that the proposal was …


Shawn Vestal: Cheers for tax cuts overlooked downstream effects

The chairman of Idaho’s tax-collection agency, Ken Roberts, addressed lawmakers in Boise last week, reporting his analysis of the effect that the new federal tax-cut package. His conclusion: Idahoans could …


UPDATED: Thu., Jan. 4, 2018, 8:52 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: At a moment of acrimony in city politics, Amber Waldref chose compromise over conflict

In a time of combat at City Hall, Amber Waldref has been a peacemaker.


Shawn Vestal: The Christmas my new BB gun nearly shot the eye out of my cousin

Well before “A Christmas Story” came out and made BB guns and the shooting out of eyes a ubiquitous theme, I got a BB gun that almost immediately nearly shot …


Our Christmas Card to Readers

The stories behind our Christmas Day covers.


UPDATED: Tue., Dec. 19, 2017, 12:16 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: WSU should keep printing the Evergreen student newspaper each day despite campuswide cutbacks

WSU managers are considering cutting the Evergreen publication schedule from five days a week to two, as a way to address the student daily newspaper’s budget deficit that has deepened …


Shawn Vestal: Spokane police Chief Craig Meidl has defied the fears of his critics to become a model leader

If Craig Meidl’s first 13 months as police chief are any indication, he has done more than rise above the lowest expectations of his doubters. He’s acting like the kind …


Shawn Vestal: Five years since Sandy Hook, Congress slumbers on gun safety

Five years ago today, 20 children and six adults were shot in class at a Connecticut school, and a lot of people thought it had finally, tragically arrived: The watershed. …


Shawn Vestal: It’s OK to be white, but bad to be dumb

The up-and-coming generation of white “nationalists” in American colleges are taking the old recipe of racial provocation in a new direction, with the “It’s OK to Be White” campaign.


UPDATED: Tue., Nov. 28, 2017, 12:13 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: Self-described ‘constitutionalist’ Gavin Seim flees to Mexico to avoid court

In the online world of conspiratorial patriot poseurs, Ephrata’s Gavin Seim has repeatedly cast himself as a hero, a valiant knight in battle with the tyrannical “psychopaths” of the justice …


Shawn Vestal: Legislature’s efforts to keep secrets from the public is shameful self-dealing

There’s a fascinatingly circular argument the attorneys for the Washington Legislature are making for why lawmakers should be allowed to keep the records of their activities secret from the public. …


Shawn Vestal: We need to learn to be grateful every day

As the grandiose comfort and convenience of our lives expands, our ability to recognize our good fortune simply can’t keep up.


Shawn Vestal: Ad for GOP’s tax plan leaves out story’s ending

Even in the imaginary world of ‘Tom’ and ‘Cindy’ the GOP tax plan falls short in the long run.


UPDATED: Sun., Nov. 19, 2017, 3:15 p.m.

Northwest Passages Book Club kicks off with local author and columnist Shawn Vestal

Northwest Passages, The Spokesman-Review’s book club, debuted Thursday with a discussion with Shawn Vestal, author of “Daredevils.”


Shawn Vestal: Park butterflies may rise again

Kelli Johnson didn’t just attend Expo ’74 – she got the whole VIP treatment. A Greenacres fourth-grader at the time, Johnson had an uncle who was closely involved in preparations. …


Shawn Vestal: Spokane Valley’s politics changed, but they are still red … just a lighter shade

Let’s not paint the Spokane Valley blue just yet. Maybe just a lighter shade of red. A nice pink, say.


UPDATED: Fri., Nov. 3, 2017, 4:06 p.m.

SR book club hosts award-winning Spokane novelist

Northwest Passages is the new book club sponsored by The Spokesman-Review. Each month, Spokane-area readers will be invited to read along, join in the conversation and attend author events. Up …


UPDATED: Thu., Nov. 2, 2017, 6:29 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: Days before election, local GOP leader launches slimy whisper campaign against Spokane city councilman

It’s campaign season, and ethics vanish as Election Day approaches. Enter Stephanie Cates, chair of the Spokane County GOP. After weeks of local conservatives, including at least one prominent elected …


UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 31, 2017, 7:10 a.m.

Shawn Vestal: PAC fueled by Spokane firefighters’ money should clean up or get out of local politics

The end may be near for Spokane for Honest Government, the political action committee representing the firefighters union and other labor groups.


Shawn Vestal: Former White House official skeptical of the ‘magic math’ of tax cuts

Jared Bernstein says there are plenty of reasons to mistrust the “fairy dust” of tax cuts. One of his strongest arguments is one of the most familiar: The past five …


UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 24, 2017, 11:29 a.m.

Shawn Vestal: Flyer targeting Spokane City Council candidate Matthew Howes was a cheap shot

A flyer that attacked Spokane City Council candidate Matthew Howes for restaurant violations was a slimy and poorly executed effort that fuels our political cynicism.