US Justice Department targets Cascadia sanctuary cities
US Attorney General Jeff Sessions has requested, under threat of subpoena, records from cities that have declared themselves sanctuaries from the administration’s hard-line immigration policies, including several in Cascadia. Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan and King County executive Dow Constantine voiced strong opposition to the action, and in Portland, mayor Ted Wheeler criticized Sessions, in particular the threat to arrest mayors who don’t comply (Oregon state has had a sanctuary law for 30 years): “This is one of the most disappointing actions from a White House in my lifetime.”
Dams such as Site C aren’t environmentally friendly
Andrew Nikiforuk, writing for The Tyee, takes issue with the BC government’s claims that the proposed Site C dam in northeast BC will provide “clean energy.” He points to various studies that show impacts ranging from CO2 emissions from concrete construction to loss of forests to flooding.
Salish Sea tribes worried by penned salmon escapes
The Lummi Tribe of north Puget Sound relies on catches of wild salmon for cultural sustenance as well as millions of dollars in revenue. An article for High Country News investigates what the impact of escaped Atlantic salmon (such as the Cooke Aquaculture spill in the summer of 2017) could have on tribes. Meanwhile, WA state legislators are debating a bill that would ban commercial net pen salmon farms.
Confronting sexism and harassment in Seattle tech world
Heidi Groover at the Stranger reports on a “#MeToo in tech” conference in Seattle, finding that 36 percent of women in the tech world have encountered harassment, and that addressing those complaints often goes unanswered. In addition, Seattle Met magazine examines the percentage of women on the boards of the Seattle area’s largest corporations. The results weren’t encouraging: of the fourteen largest, only Alaska Airlines has a majority of women, and many have only one or two board members.
Vancouver short film festival highlights women directors
Hollywood has spent the last couple years confronting the lack of women directors in its ranks, and so it’s encouraging to see a report from the Vancouver Sun on the upcoming Short Film Festival (Jan 26-27) in which 14 female directors will be showcased. Among them is Mary Galloway, a First Nations filmmaker from Qualicum Beach, BC. Her film Unintentional Mother tells the story of a nanny trying to break free of her abusive father. Purchase tickets at vsff.com.
A poem by Georgia Dennison: Mount Saint Helens
Pacifica Literary Review has a poem online by Missoula-based poet Georgia Dennison that riffs on the various names given to the Washington state volcano that blew its top in 1980:
“…This land carries, against its will,
the word “discovered.”
Be sure to visit Pacifica and read the poem in its entirety.
That’s today’s news, arts, and culture from the shores of the Salish Sea. –Andrew Engelson
Photo credits: screen shot from the preview to Mary Galloway’s film Unintentional Mother on Vimeo