Slog PM: CHOP’s New Barricades, Another Proposed Payroll Tax, and a 51st State

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CHOPs new boundaries have been placed in the middle of Pine. But which side is for pedestrians and which side is for cars?

CHOP’s new cement and plywood barricades have been placed in the middle of Pine. But which side is for pedestrians and which side is for cars? Chase Burns

Things could always be worse: Florida man bitten in the face by an alligator while looking for his Frisbee, say police.

This morning, new barricades showed up at CHOP: The footprint was an agreement between some organizers and various city heads, allowing more car traffic through the CHOP while also adding cement blocks to protect CHOP residents from vehicle attacks. Rich Smith has an overview here. Obviously, not everyone was happy.

And then…

When I arrived this afternoon, the new boundary was intact, but pedestrians did not seem to give a fuck about abiding by it. There’s no way a vehicle could safely pass through this area during peak pedestrian traffic.

What the front of the East Precinct now looks like with the new barricades.

What the front of the East Precinct now looks like with the new barricades. CB

The insides of the new cement and plywood barricade.

The insides. CB

Some CHOP residents said the new barricades feel more safe: I spoke with the organizer behind the No Cop Co-op, a woman who goes by Mama Bear, who said the new cement barricades provide a better sense of security from potential vehicle attacks. The No Cop Co-op will be moving off of 11th and more into the center of Pine overnight, clearing up the sidewalks around the Rhino Room.

Mama Bear also introduced me to two other leaders at the No Cop Co-op: One named Rooks told me he’d been at CHOP since the first day of protests. He plans on staying in the area until demands are met, although he wasn’t entirely convinced about the proposal of turning the East Precinct into a community center for restorative justice, as Councilmember Kshama Sawant has proposed. He said he’d prefer to have a “learning center” that was “open to all cultures” and focused more on education. The other leader, who preferred to go by Day 0, worked security and as a photographer for the No Cop Co-op.

Day 0, left, and Rooks, right.

Day 0, left, and Rooks, right. CB

A Free Capitol Hill sign remains at the entrance to CHOP. CHOP is the most dominant name for the area, but signs for CHAZ and Free Capitol Hill remain in the area.

A “Free Capitol Hill” sign remains at the entrance to the Capitol Hill Organized Protest. CHOP is the most dominant name, but there are still signs for CHAZ and Free Capitol Hill throughout the area. CB

Florida fired its coronavirus data scientist, Rebekah Jones: Now she’s publishing the data on her own, reports the Washington Post. “It really is because I had to stop feeling sorry for myself and what happened to me, as unfair as it was, and get back to doing what I wanted to do in the first place, which was help people,” Jones told the Post.

Could Washington D.C. become the 51st state? The Democrat-controlled U.S. House has scheduled a vote next week on whether or not to make the District of Columbia the 51st state. The vote was scheduled in response to federal forces recently clearing protestors from Lafayette Square with gas so Trump could take a photo-op with a Bible. More from ABC News:

Next Friday’s vote, if successful, would pass a D.C. statehood bill for the first time in the House, but the legislation faces insurmountable opposition in the GOP-controlled Senate. It comes even as the COVID-19 pandemic has forced delays in the consideration of most other legislation. More than enough lawmakers are officially backing the bill for it to pass. In 1993, the Democratic-controlled Congress defeated a D.C. statehood bill by an almost 2-1 margin.

I’m sure Puerto Rico has some questions about this.

Are you unhappy? You’re not alone. A new poll finds that Americans are the unhappiest they’ve been in 50 years. Click that link for some sad graphs.

Here are the 98 U.S. cities where demonstrators have been tear gassed: I still smell it when I think about it.

The Seattle City Council is “swimming in progressive revenue bills” now that Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda has introduced her “JumpStart Seattle” plan, “which would raise $200 million, significantly less than the $500 million the Sawant/Morales [‘Amazon’] tax would collect,” writes The Stranger‘s Nathalie Graham. More on how it gets its $$$:

Companies in the $7 million to $1 billion payroll threshold would be taxed at a rate of 0.7 percent for employee payrolls over $150,000 (and at 1.4 percent for any salaries over $500,000). Then, there’s a whole different tax rate for companies with payrolls over $1 billion. At those companies, employee payrolls over $150,000 would be taxed at a rate of 1.4 percent, and the over $500,000-earning paychecks would get slapped with a 2.1 percent tax rate.

Read Nathalie’s whole breakdown here.

“President Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday to encourage changes in policing,” writes the New York Times, “including new restrictions on chokeholds. But the order will have little immediate impact, and does not address calls from activists and protesters nationwide for broader action and a new focus on racism.”

Trump supporters and Republicans seem certain Trump will win reelection: Why? He continues to be down in the polls. Is it because “they truly despise ‘elite’ sources of adverse information”? Will they just contest any defeat? Intelligencer has some theories.

ICYMI: Today, Trump said there’s an AIDS vaccine. There is no AIDS vaccine.

Seattle’s Black population is the lowest it’s been in 50 years: The data comes from Seattle Times FYI Guy Gene Balk, who writes:

This marks the first time since the 1960s that the city’s Black population has dipped below 7%.

To be sure, Seattle, the fifth-whitest major U.S. city, has never had a very high percentage of Black residents compared with most other big cities. But the Black population was certainly higher in the past than it is today. From 1980 to 1990, the Black population peaked at about 10% of the city’s total.

The Central District neighborhood was, in 1970, nearly 75% Black. Today, after decades of gentrification, it’s closer to 15% Black. South Seattle, too, has become less Black in recent years.

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