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Tuesday, July 7th, 2020
In brief: At 1:30 Saturday morning a 27-year-old Black man drove his car through a group of protesters who were part of a demonstration on a closed section of I-5, killing one protester and critically wounding another; the full City Council passed Councilmember Mosqueda's high-earners payroll tax yesterday by a veto-proof 7-2 majority, with the proceeds set to go towards coronavirus relief initially before transitioning to homelessness and affordable housing; and City Councilmember Andrew Lewis introduced legislation to shift some of SPD's budget to a new "mental health and substance addiction first-responder program" that would be routed through 911 but dispatch "unarmed medics and crisis workers" instead of police officers.
STATS
Washington & King County
As of last night at 11:59 pm
Statewide: 37,420 confirmed cases (+435), 1,384 deaths (+14)
Total tests conducted: 635,524 (+6,268)

King County: 11,182 confirmed cases (+77), 626 deaths (+4)
King County Key Indicators (last updated today at 2:47 pm)

U.S.
Today
2,932,596 confirmed cases (+46,329, 130,133 deaths (+322)
Total tests conducted: 36,878,106 (+653,091)

The world
Today
11,798,678 confirmed cases, 543,535 deaths
Local Protest News
Image from The Seattle Times: Flowers and a photo of Summer Taylor, 24, sit outside the King County Jail in Seattle on Monday. (Erika Schultz / The Seattle Times)
At 1:30 Saturday morning a 27-year-old Black man drove his car through a group of protesters who were part of a demonstration on a closed section of I-5, killing a protester named Summer Taylor and critically wounding a protester named Diaz Love who was livestreaming the demonstration (both of the injured protesters use they/them pronouns; there are GoFundMe pages for Taylor here and for Love here). The driver is currently being held on $1.2 million bail

City Councilmember Andrew Lewis introduced legislation to shift some of SPD's budget to a new "mental health and substance addiction first-responder program" that would be routed through 911 but dispatch "unarmed medics and crisis workers" instead of police officers. [Seattle Times, MyNorthwest]

The family of a young Black man who was shot and killed by Tacoma police in September of 2019 filed an excessive force lawsuit against the City of Tacoma. [KIRO 7]

A King County Sheriff's deputy--who happens to be Governor Inslee's cousin--was placed on leave after posts he made mocking Saturday morning's attack on protesters came to light. [The Stranger]

And over the weekend a group of activists toppled a monument to Confederate Civil War veterans in Lakeview Cemetery on Capitol Hill. [South Seattle Emerald]
Local COVID-19 News
The full City Council passed Councilmember Mosqueda's high-earners payroll tax yesterday by a veto-proof 7-2 majority (Pedersen and Juarez were the two "no" votes), with the proceeds set to go towards coronavirus relief initially before transitioning to homelessness and affordable housing. [Seattle Times, GeekWire]

Yesterday Washington saw its highest-ever daily count of new cases (1,087, vs. a high point of 601 from the first stages of our outbreak in late March and early April), and King County Public Health Officer Jeff Duchin warned King County residents that "COVID-19 risk is increasing" and recommended that "without significant long-term behavior change a very difficult time may be in store for us." 

Today the new statewide law requiring businesses to refuse services to customers who aren't wearing masks went into effect, and the three counties that currently have the worst outbreaks in the state were approved to move to Phase 1.5 anyway, because their residents had been driving to neighboring counties to eat at restaurants and visit businesses (highlighting the biggest problem with out state's county-by-county reopening approach).

A coronavirus-focused special session of the state legislature in August is looking less likely, although one could still happen before the next year's legislative session starts in January. [Seattle Times]

And the City announced that paid street parking will resume next Monday, July 13th. [KING 5]
National COVID-19 and Protest News
The nationwide surge in new cases continued over the weekend and yesterday and today, with multiple states setting new daily records. [NPR]

President Trump used his July 3rd address at Mt. Rushmore to rail against the "new far-left fascism" that he says the recent protests against police brutality represent, and barely mentioned the coronavirus pandemic at all. [New York Times]

The Trump administration formally gave notice of its intent to leave the World Health Organization, which will go into effect next July. [New York Times]

The state of Florida, which is currently experiencing record-high numbers of new cases daily, announced that schools will be required to reopen fully in-person at the start of the next school year, after Trump vowed to pressure states to fully reopen their schools.

In an apparent move to pressure colleges and universities to resume in-person classes, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that international students--who account for a huge percentage of most schools' tuition budgets--will have to leave the country if their schools transition to online-only courses. [CNN]

The Small Business Administration released data about the companies and non-profits across the country that received loans from the CARES Act's Payroll Protection Program. [Washington Post]

There's emerging evidence that the main impact of the relentless attacks on the legitimacy of mail-in voting by Trump and the Republican Party have so far been to reduce the number of Republicans who vote using absentee ballots, because they don't trust the system (Democrats, meanwhile, are voting using absentee ballots in record numbers). [Washington Post]

And a peer-reviewed nationwide study of 61,000 people across Spain that was published in the Lancet yesterday found that just 5% of its population has developed antibodies, implying that "achiev[ing] herd immunity through natural infection is not only highly unethical, but also unachievable." [CNN]
Viral
Chinese authorities confirm case of bubonic plague in Inner Mongolia [CNN, 1.7 million shares]

Video: Frederick Douglass' descendants deliver his 'Fourth of July' speech [Minnesota Public Radio, 1.4 million shares]

Trump Uses Mount Rushmore Speech to Deliver Divisive Culture War Message [New York Times, 1.2 million shares]

Kanye West Announces He's Running for President, Gets Support From Elon Musk [Comicbook.com, 1.1 million shares]

NFL to play Black national anthem 'Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing' before 'Star Spangled Banner' at Week 1 games [CBS Sports, 1.04 million shares]
Ending on a high note
There's apparently a family of Peregrine Falcons nesting under the West Seattle Bridge.
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Copyright © 2020 Sol Villarreal, All rights reserved.


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