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Stories tagged: Shawn Vestal


UPDATED: Thu., May 18, 2017, 10:36 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: Homelessness is up, according to report, but that may not be a bad thing

Officially, Spokane’s homeless numbers went up significantly this year. Rob McCann thinks that’s great news.


Shawn Vestal: Spokane juries keep showing a loose definition of self-defense

Is there any kind of vigilante shooting-in-the-back that a Spokane jury won’t bless with a not-guilty verdict?


Shawn Vestal: Department of Justice review of Spokane Police Department has prompted changes the community can embrace

In big, broad ways, there is reason to feel proud of Spokane on this front: We have evolved from the city that sued and blamed the family of Otto Zehm …


Shawn Vestal: Racist truck sign honors shameful history

It’s not like the guy could be all that smart. But there’s no way Jim Valentine could be quite this dumb: The Post Falls man stuck a gross caricature of …


UPDATED: Thu., April 13, 2017, 11:02 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: Public records law strong for everyone but lawmakers

None of your business. Wondering how the Legislature’s coming along in its negotiations over funding education? Wondering who the legislative leaders are meeting with as they try to hash it …


Shawn Vestal: Refugee came too far to be greeted with racist fliers

Refugee Aung Zaw’s life has been full of enough strife that a few racist posters pasted to the door where he works didn’t rattle him too much. But the rest …


Shawn Vestal: The tale of how Pat and Patty met on St. Patrick’s Day

It was the Friday before St. Patrick’s Day, 1992, which meant St. Patrick’s Day season was well under way. Patty Henchel went to the Hi-Neighbor Tavern on North Monroe with …


UPDATED: Mon., March 13, 2017, 5:10 p.m.

Vestal: McMorris Rodgers backs GOP health care plan stripping insurance from Eastern Washington’s poor

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and the GOP are yanking the rug out from under the poorest and most vulnerable people in her Eastern Washington congressional district.


Shawn Vestal: It’s a mad time, and that’s democracy

Are you mad? Seems that everyone is these days. And perhaps that’s okay, because sometimes incivility is a necessary and messy part of democracy.


UPDATED: Thu., Feb. 16, 2017, 9:02 p.m.

Shawn Vestal: Ed Murray remembers the slow – then sudden – evolution toward marriage equality

Twenty years ago this month, the Washington Legislature passed the first of two bills “defending” marriage from gay people. Five years ago this month, the Washington Legislature became the first …


Shawn Vestal: When cops seize property, due process is lacking

When the president met with law enforcement officials this week, what made news was his flip comment that he might “destroy” a state senator’s career. What got less attention was …


Shawn Vestal: Breitbart and the ‘devastation’ of Twin Falls

Breitbart News’ treatment of Twin Falls, Idaho is illustrative of its approach to “news.”


Shawn Vestal: Turning the safety net over to states is a way to erode it, not reform it

Turning over welfare to the states has resulted in more people being mired in “deep poverty.”


Shawn Vestal: Rising wages associated with healthier infants

Do bigger paychecks help produce bigger babies? Some recent research suggests they might. That was one of several interesting and unexpected results of a recent attempt to check on the …


Shawn Vestal: In word and deed, Obama set a unifying example

He helped stave off a depression. He opened the doctor’s office to millions of Americans, changing the country’s fundamental expectations about health care. He got Osama bin Laden.


Vestal: Spokane psychologist who developed CIA’s waterboarding program has become a torture pundit amid Trump’s ‘torture works’ rhetoric

After president-elect Trump’s statements supporting torture of enemy combatants, a Spokane psychologist who helped design the CIA’s waterboarding program says the country must do what’s necessary to collect enemy information …


Shawn Vestal: citizenship a responsibility now, and in the future

Shawn Vestal gives some advice to his son – in 2028, when the now-9-year-old is first able to vote for president.


Shawn Vestal: Presidential politics won’t break my family ties, but what about the nation?

She’s voting for him. I voted for her. But on Wednesday morning, whichever one of us is celebrating and whichever one is mourning, we’ll still be family.


Shawn Vestal: Be a hero, make sure your smoke detectors work

Imagine it: Your house on fire. Your children inside.


Shawn Vestal: ‘Bridge to Hookerville’ is a lazy, spiteful label for such a promising project

The new U-District bridge linking the promise of college with the problems of a neighborhood is a chance for change that Spokane should embrace.


Shawn Vestal: Cathy McMorris Rodgers and other GOP leaders display cowardice when it comes to Trump embrace

If there’s anything good arising from the fever swamp of Trump, it has been the occasional blips of political courage in the GOP, peeking from the stew of calculation, cynicism …


Vestal: Can a modest proposal to keep guns from troubled family members pass? An initiative aims to find out

How well a gun-control initiative fares with voters this fall may tell us whether we’re at the tip of a wave – where modest proposals to make the country safer …


Shawn Vestal: WSU’s Schulz, Leach, Moos punt responsibility

WSU president Kirk Schulz’s football first mantra fails the leadership test needed to deal with the problem of player arrests.


Shawn Vestal: Across country, Republicans turning to McMorris Rodgers to raise millions of dollars

McMorris Rodgers has raised $8.6 million in this election cycle, and passed on $3.2 million for fellow House members and candidates.


Shawn Vestal: Lack of public involvement leads Stuckart to reject Meidl’s appointment as police chief

City Council President Ben Stuckart said Thursday that he would vote against Craig Meidl’s appointment as Spokane’s police chief Monday night. He will urge his fellow council members to do …


Shawn Vestal: Don’t choose sides, just stand against violence

Don’t pick a side, says columnist Shawn Vestal. It doesn’t have to be cops versus citizens, black versus white, us versus them. We can all be on the same side …


Summer stories: ‘When to Play Dead’

They were camping, if you want to call it that. A tent you could stand in, tricked out in geometric shapes. Foot-thick air mattresses, inflated with a battery-powered blower. A …


Shawn Vestal: Anti-Muslim lobby hungry for falsehood

ACT for America – an anti-Muslim group with chapters around the country fermenting sour, ignorant racism – claims that it is leading a fight against Islamic terrorism. Its chief weapon? …


Shawn Vestal: Torture book by Spokane psychologist is MIA

A Spokane psychologist who developed and implemented the Bush administration’s torture program has co-authored “Enhanced Interrogation,” which was slated by Crown Publishing for a May 10 release. The book has …


Shawn Vestal: Spokane’s version of Westboro Baptist blowhards deserve cold shoulder

Mother’s Day, 2016. A Spokane woman, trailed by a handful of kids and adults, marches through the Spokane Valley Target, waving a Bible over her head and roaring. “Target would …