Posts Tagged ‘DC’

Facemasks

June 27, 2022

Facemasks

Still got facemasks? Good, because COVID isn’t going anywhere soon. When it comes to mask use, public policy now puts the burden of choice on you. Kimberly Mas reviews personal and community risks in this Vox video:

 

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DC Emancipation Day, 1862: It Was Slaveowners Who Got Reparations.

April 15, 2022

DC Emancipation Day, 1862: It Was Slaveowners Who Got Reparations.

On April 16, 1862, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln signed an act freeing the 3000 enslaved people in the District of Columbia. This was nine months before he signed the Emancipation Proclamation freeing slaves in the Confederate states, many of whom actually remained in bondage until the the war’s end in 1865, and 20 months before ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment, which definitively outlawed slavery everywhere in the United States.

Tomorrow Saturday, April 16th, the District of Columbia will celebrate District Emancipation Day, with speeches, concerts, fireworks and parades. There’s a bit of rain on that parade, though, if you take a closer look at history. That 1862 act was called the Compensated Emancipation Act, and it authorized payments to DC slaveowners rather than liberation of enslaved people on moral grounds. It even sought to promote emigration of former slaves outside the borders of the United States.

In any case, Black Washingtonians had their freedom. That’s definitely worth celebrating.

More:

“When Slaveowners Got Reparations,” Tera W. Hunter, New York Times

“D.C. celebrates Emancipation Day,” Cuneyt Dil, Axios Washington D.C.

“D.C. celebrates its 160th Emancipation Day this weekend,” Elliot C. Williams, Alexya Brown, and Rachel Kurzius, WAMU News

“Bondage to Freedom: Commemorating DC Emancipation Day,” Karl Racine, Medium

“The DC Emancipation Day Celebration Is Back After Two Years. Here Are the DC Street Closures for Saturday’s Parade and Concert.”  Damare Baker, Washingtonian

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Semis Without a Cause: Truckers May Choke DC

February 25, 2022

Semis Without a Cause: Truckers May Choke DC

Inspired by a trucker protest that choked Ottawa for three weeks and caused millions in economic damage, US haulers are hellbent on blocking arteries in and around Washington, DC, targeting March 1st, when President Biden delivers the State of the Union address. It’s a “People’s Convoy” or “Freedom Convoy,” depending who you ask.

What the truckers are protesting: What’ve you got? It’s a protest against COVID rules, high fuel costs, lack of truck parking areas, excessive regulation, insuffucient freedom. Oh yeah, and the 2020 presidential election. So there you have it, another loosely-linked libertarian clusterfuck of chaos.

Self-proclaimed convoy leaders claim the trucks won’t clog local DC streets, but will strangle the surrounding Beltway displaying protest signs and banners. An anti-Obama trucker protest tried to strangle the Beltway back in 2013 but couldn’t, since it would take about 10,000 eighteen-wheelers to do that, and they got 30.

But this isn’t 2013, so it’s likely a few extemist truckers will park in choke points, if not on DC streets then at key Beltway exits, bridges, and overpasses. That was the Canadian truckers’ tactic in Windsor-Detroit, and in truck protests in Brazil (2018) and Chile (2020). Police in the DC-MD-VA area are on alert, as are Capitol Hill Police and the National Guard.

More:

“Here’s What We Know So Far About Possible Trucker Convoy Protests Coming To D.C. Soon,” Margaret Barthel, DCist

“A Truck Caravan With Far-Right Links Heads to Washington, D.C.,” Shawn Hubler and Alan Feuer, New York Times

“Many Of The Groups Behind Jan. 6 Are Now Organizing U.S. Trucker Convoys,” Jesselyn Cook, HuffPost

“‘Be as Disruptive as They Can’: What to Know About the Trucker Convoys’ Plans for DC,” Andrew Beaujon, Washingtonian

“Trucker Protest Convoy’s Grievances Include Streets Named for Biden,” Margaret Hartmann, New York Magazine

Updates:

“Republicans who opposed racial justice protests hope truckers ‘clog up’ US cities,” Sergio Olmos, The Guardian

“‘Don Quixote-like quest’: Ukraine attack and easing Covid mandates leave US trucker protest on the fringe,” Sergio Olmos, The Guardian

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Generic DC NFL Team Renamed

February 2, 2022

Generic DC NFL Team Renamed
DC’s NFL team shed its long-held racist name and adopted a place-holder generic name, Washington Football Team, in July 2020. It announced a new permanent name today, February 2nd, suggesting the team would be called the Washington Groundhogs. Alas, the new name is the Washington Commanders.

It’s not “Commandos,” since NFL players really should wear undies. It could have been Salamanders, since the mediocre team is owned by lizardman Dan Snyder, but no. The new logo seems to be a sort of stenciled W, since the Nats already have the cool curly one. There’s also some sort of goofy crest.

Anyway, football fans in the DC area have seven months, until the start of the 2022 season, to practice saying “How ’bout them ‘Mandos?” Probably while shaking their heads.

More:

“Washington Football Team announces Commanders as new NFL nickname,” Steve Gardner, USA Today

“Like It Or Not, the Washington Commanders Are Officially Here,” Kelyn Soong, Washington City Paper

“Washington Has A New NFL Team Name: The Commanders,” Elliot C. Williams, DCist

“Washington Commanders Is an Appropriately Boring Name,” Benjamin Hart, New York Magazine

“The Commanders name lands ‘with a thud’ for some Washington fans,” Andrew Golden, Washington Post

Updates:

“Experts Aren’t Wowed by New Commanders Branding,” Andrew Beaujon, Washingtonian

“On Capitol Hill, ex-Washington NFL employees levy new harassment claims against Daniel Snyder,” Liz Clarke, Washington Post

“The Best (and Worst) Reactions to the Washington Football Team’s New Name,” Lauren Mccaffrey and Anna Spiegel, Washingtonian

“The Rebrand Is the Least Bad Thing About the Washington Commanders,” Matt Terl, Washington City Paper

Related:

“Washington Commanders investigating sexual harassment allegation against owner,” Chloe Folmar, The Hill

“NFL says it will control investigation into Commanders owner Dan Snyder, not the team,” Jonathan Franklin, NPR News

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Image (“WFT NFL Uniform”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Pro-Virus Protesters Infested DC Last Weekend

January 26, 2022

Pro-Virus Protesters Infested DC Last Weekend

Thousands of disgruntled and unvaccinated citizens descended on Washington DC last Sunday to defend their right to infect fellow Amercans with the COVID-19 virus. Anti-vaccine protesters and other members of the pro-death movement included the usual quacks and wingnuts, but also their strange bedfellow Robert Kennedy Jr., who compared vaccine mandates to Dr. Mengeles’ experiments at Auschwitz.

The District of Columbia has vaccine and mask mandates for indoor dining, so naturally the wrathful anti-vax throngs took their anger out on DC’s restaurant waitstaff.

Update:

“RFK Jr. apologizes after condemnation for Anne Frank comment,” Michelle R. Smith, Associated Press

More:

“Thousands march on Washington, D.C., in rally against vaccine mandates,” Daniel Uria, UPI

“Anti-vaccine activists march in D.C. — a city that mandates coronavirus vaccination — to protest mandates,” Katie Mettler, Lizzie Johnson, Justin Wm. Moyer, et al., Washington Post

“Anti-Vaccine Mandate Rally Draws Misinformation, RFK Jr., and Comparisons to Nazi Germany,” Eli Weiner, Washington City Paper

“‘Defeat The Mandates’ Rally Against Covid-19 Precautions Held During Omicron Surge,” Bruce Y. Lee, Forbes

Related:

“5 Republican Politicians Freaking Out About DC’s Vaccine Mandates,” Jessica Sidman, Washingtonian

“Omicron Cases Appear to Peak in U.S., but Deaths Continue to Rise,” Mitch Smith, Julie Bosman and Tracey Tully, New York Times

“The Anti-vaccine Right Brought Human Sacrifice to America,” Kurt Andersen, The Atlantic

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

January 6th

January 5, 2022

January 6th
America’a red-hatted MAGAheads will be celebrating January 6th, but not as the Feast of the Epiphany (which features swarthy, undocumented Magi immigrants) or as a national day of prayer and mourning for the near-death of American democracy last year. The right-wing paranoid and election-denying alt-right, GOP coup plotters, Proud Boys, QAnon, Boogaloo Bois, Oath Keepers, Trump loyalists, white nationalists and Infowars fanatics and their ilk will commemorate their deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol last year, when they attempted to overturn the presidential election, as directed by the election’s clear loser.

The Capitol Police seem more prepared for a lunatic onslaught this January 6th, so there may be decentralized right-wing assaults on other federal, state, and local government buildings and officials. There will certainly be plenty of right-wing attacks on the truth.

More:

“A Roundup of January 6 Anniversary Commemorations in DC,” Damare Baker, Washingtonian

“Right-wing and liberal vigils planned in D.C. on anniversary of Capitol riot,” Ellie Silverman, Washington Post

“At time of Capitol prayer service Jan. 6, Trump will deliver remarks doubling down on the ‘Big Lie,’” David Siders, Politico

“Bannon, Trump to counterprogram Dems for Jan. 6 anniversary,” Jonathan Swan, Axios

Updates:

“Ingraham, Graham talked Trump out of Jan. 6 press conference,” Axios

“Trump cancels Jan. 6 news conference at Mar-a-Lago, blames news media and House committee investigating attack on Capitol,” Felicia Sonmez and Josh Dawsey, Washington Post

Related:

“Every Day Is Jan. 6 Now,” New York Times editorial

“A year after Jan. 6 attack, Capitol Hill neighborhood still feels the effects.” Joe Heim, Washington Post

“A look back at Americans’ reactions to the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol,” John Gramlich, Pew Research Center

“We’ve reached the ‘Yeah, it was pretty much an attempted coup, so what?’ stage of the Jan. 6 probe,” Aaron Blake, Washington Post

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

9-11 Urban Legacy: Cities of Bollards

September 13, 2021

9-11 Urban Legacy: Cities of Bollards

“It used to be that D.C. architecture consisted of graceful Georgetown mansions, neoclassical federal buildings — and, of course, the monuments. When the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts was founded in 1910 to guide Washington’s architectural development, it reviewed designs such as those of the Lincoln Memorial and the Federal Triangle. Over the seven years I’ve served on the commission, however, an increasing amount of time is spent discussing security-improvement projects: screening facilities, hardened gatehouses, Delta barriers, perimeter fences, and seemingly endless rows of bollards. We used to mock an earlier generation that peppered the U.S. capital with Civil War generals on horseback; now I wonder what future generations will make of our architectural legacy of crash-resistant walls and blast-proof glass.”

— Wittold Rybczynski, Meyerson professor of urbanism at the University of Pennsylvania.

Read more:

“The Blast-Proof City,” Wittold Rybczynski, Foreign Policy

“We Built DC Into an Urban Fortress After 9/11. And January 6 Proved It Was Penetrable.” Jane Recker, Washingtonian

“I Came, Eyesore, I Conquered,” Witold Rybczynski, Slate

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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DC Statehood Bill Passes the House

April 23, 2021

DC Statehood Bill Passes the House

On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed legislation to make the District of Columbia the nation’s 51st state. If passed, the 712,000 Americans in DC would have voting represention in Congress. Washingtonians paid $27.5 billion in federal taxes last year, so you’d think, what with that No-Taxation-Without Representation thing, Senate passage of the bill would be a slam-dunk. Nope.

More:

“The 5 dumbest GOP arguments against D.C. statehood,” Paul Waldman, Washington Post

“Steve Scalise’s Ignorant, Racist Case Against D.C. Statehood,” Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine

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Image ( DC neighborhood 4th of July Parade) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

 

DC Emancipation Day, 1862: It Was Slaveowners Who Got Reparations.

April 16, 2021

DC Emancipation Day, 1862: It Was Slaveowners Who Got Reparations.

On April 16, 1862, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln signed an act freeing the 3000 enslaved people in the District of Columbia. This was nine months before he signed the Emancipation Proclamation freeing slaves in the Confederate states, many of whom actually remained in bondage until the the war’s end in 1865, and 20 months before ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment, which definitively outlawed slavery everywhere in the United States.

Understandably, April 16th is a holiday in the District of Columbia, District Emancipation Day, traditionally celebrated with speeches, concerts, fireworks and parades. There’s a bit of rain on that parade, though, if you take a closer look at history. That 1862 act was called the Compensated Emancipation Act, and it authorized payments to DC slaveowners rather than liberation of enslaved people on moral grounds. It even sought to promote emigration of former slaves outside the borders of the United States.

In any case, black Washingtonians had their freedom. That’s definitely worth celebrating.

More:

“When Slaveowners Got Reparations,” Tera W. Hunter, New York Times

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Short link: https://wp.me/p6sb6-wXD

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

 

Capitol Riot and Inauguration Lockdown Cost the City of DC Millions

January 26, 2021

“How big was the economic blow that the city received due to fears of a Jan. 6 reprisal? While it will take some time to come up with a final tally, the Downtown D.C. Business Improvement District is estimating a nine-figure loss. ‘From the pandemic point of view, the city is out $100 million-ish from the normal inaugural bump,’ says Gerry Widdicombe, director of economic development for the Downtown D.C. BID.”

–“What the Capitol Riot and Inauguration Lockdown Cost the City of D.C.,” Kriston Capps, Bloomberg CityLab

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Photo by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.