Nuke Testing Again? | Hits & Misses | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Nuke Testing Again? 

Patriots' Party, Slippery Slopes

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Nuke Testing Again?
You may think that it's only the "lefties" who oppose a reboot of nuclear-weapons testing. In this Trumpian era, there seems to be a renewed appetite for war and arms competition. And while Utah Downwinders might seem like ghosts of the past, longtime Downwinder advocate Mary Dickson told The Salt Lake Tribune she "burst into tears" upon learning the Trump administration is considering nuclear arms tests. Downwinders leader Preston J. Truman is undergoing cancer treatments from the effects of 1950s nuke tests. Deseret News photographer Jeff Allred lost two young sisters to cancer from the tests. Nuclear may be part of the energy future, but testing—even underground—should be outlawed. Between 1950 and 1960, the Smithsonian YouTube Channel notes Las Vegas' population grew by 161% due in part to the casino industry but also because people wanted to glimpse nuclear tests in person. Do you trust the government on nukes?

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Patriots' Party
Maybe it was a fluke or just because the Black Lives Matter protests took precedence, but for whatever reason, the Deseret News deserves a thumbs up. The paper didn't give credence to Collin Raye's F-common-sense rally in Cedar City. The Salt Lake Tribune did. "This is a celebration of our freedom and not living in fear, and for moving forward," Raye said. Attendee Attorney General Sean Reyes "rapped about how he chases 'criminals down like a bloodhound,'" the admonished mayor of Kaysville said she was "jealous" Cedar City got to host the event and Trump's gubernatorial candidate Greg Hughes took selfies with "patriots." The takeaway is that the rule of law is a choice—if you don't like it, move your event elsewhere. You can argue whether the law should prevent people from gathering, but how about good sense?, The governor was only too happy to allow gatherings of 6,000 people because, as right-wing darling Eric Moutsos says, he wants to save businesses while those Black Lives Matter protests apparently want to "tear down America."

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Slippery Slopes
VP Mike Pence was all about Utah in a good way—certain that local tech companies could save the day for COVID-19 testing. Maybe they didn't have the "know" how to do it, but they just needed to be the "disruptive innovators" that conservatives so love. Even Ashton Kutcher (a celebrity, not a medical professional) tweeted about it. Then along came a Salt Lake Tribune investigation that brought to light not only the state's no-bid $5 million contract, but also TestUtah's low positive rates. The Trib's investigation caught the interest of The New Yorker, which did an in-depth piece on Utah firms Nomi Health and Co-Diagnostics and their subsequent expansion into Nebraska and Iowa. Their online symptom screener initially had questions about the use of hydroxychloroquine, the president's drug of choice. Now, Gov. Herbert says Utah now will be a lot more careful in its bidding. Ya think?

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About The Author

Katharine Biele

Katharine Biele

Bio:
A City Weekly contributor since 1992, Biele is the informed voice behind our Hits & Misses and Citizen Revolt columns. When not writing, you can catch her working to empower voters and defend democracy alongside the League of Women Voters.

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