Us is all of us, like it or not. At this moment of extraordinary national tension, so full of the potential for violence, so fractured at the core, so full of venom and incitement radiating from the White House, and so vilely attended by bigoted online calls to shoot protesters or run them over, us versus them is a disastrous formulation.
A repeat drunken driver who works at Spokane’s coronavirus hot spot just put six city cops – and who knows how many others – at risk of contracting COVID-19. From the jail to his job at a Hillyard pasta factory to a crowded sedan full of fellow partiers, he has done his best to be our gold-medal super spreader, while giving the city an example in what not to do
Everywhere you look right now, with the announcement that Spokane County can move cautiously down the road toward reopening the economy, you see people racing across the coronavirus finish line, arms raised, cheering. Which risks putting us back at the coronavirus starting line.
Lots of people have been demanding that Spokane County be allowed to move most quickly down the path toward reopening the economy than the rest of the state. But there’s really only one voice who can truly ensure that the move toward reopening is based on good, sober science and a concrete plan to build a testing regimen into the process.
For about 90 minutes almost every day, Mandi Ibarra-Rivera is a meal wrangler. Working from home, Ibarra-Rivera, a Spokane writer, contacts restaurants and coordinates orders from hungry families to help produce the home food deliveries that have been the core of Spokane Food Fighters – an emergency response system for the hungry that sprang to life on March 22, as the state shut down to thwart the coronavirus.
Dr. Bob Lutz is getting ready to try and put the coronavirus in a box. That, he says, is ultimately how we will reopen public life safely – by having a strategy to quickly identify, trace and quarantine new cases of the coronavirus.
Good for you, the thousands of residents who are responsible, thoughtful, informed, impatient, hurting, unselfish, decent people who did not participate in an ill-fated and selfish protest last week in Spokane.
Has the Idaho Freedom Foundation – the faux charity that strives to be the king-maker and king-slayer of Gem State politics – caught a serious illness? Or just a seasonal bug? Either way, the sicker the IFF is, the healthier Idaho politics will be.
Tommy Ahlquist, a former emergency room doctor and gubernatorial candidate, knew what was needed: testing. He didn’t want to wait around for the government, and he knew the economy couldn’t be responsibly opened without much more information.
The effects of the coronavirus pandemic have been harsh in many parts of the community, and especially so for many arts organizations. Across the board, large stalwarts like the Spokane Symphony and Civic Theatre, the smaller operations and performing arts venues, and individual artists are changing how they’re doing business and worried about the future.
People have picked apart and criticized the governor’s approach, but Inslee’s aggressive, health-first standards seem likely to look wiser and wiser in the rearview mirror, especially when set against the national response.
Some $90 million in federal emergency funds with almost no strings attached are headed toward Spokane County – and with it are coming criticisms of County Commissioner Al French’s initial signals that he wants to use the money not to offset financial emergencies such as rent or child care, but to develop a longer-view plan to boost the economy and support businesses.
It’s 7 p.m., and the line of weary men trails back from the front door, along the fence that surrounds the House of Charity and down the sidewalk lining Pacific Avenue. Five at a time, the men enter the shelter with their backpacks and walkers, their suitcases and overcoats. At the entrance, health district workers check every man’s temperature and ask a series of questions.
In ordinary times, Ava Barany and Sarah Edwards use leftover flowers and natural materials to create works of art that lie in wait, in parks and public spaces, to delight anyone who might stumble upon them. But the two artists, who call themselves The Botanical Alchemists, rely heavily on florists to give them unused flowers for their creations, and during the coronavirus shutdown, the supply of unused flowers has dried up.
Amy McColm is a family resource coordinator assigned to Lidgerwood Elementary for The Zone Project. She’s also just someone who, when hearing that a family needs food, works whatever angle she can to get it to them.
Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich said an incident at the Spokane County fairgrounds testing site was one of three “very odd” disruptions there on April 3 and 4 – the weekend that the #FilmYourHospital movement, spawned in the most conspiracy-sickened quadrants of the internet, had become a call to action.