White Washing | Hits & Misses | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

White Washing 

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White Washing
Is there no end to the strange resentment Americans felt since the 2016 election? And who's resentful? It's pretty much white folks. Most recently, the whining comes from San Juan County where voters apparently are terrified that newly drawn court-ordered voting districts would give Navajos a majority in most school and commission districts. Despite whites having majority control throughout the county's history, and the population is nearly 50/50, they're claiming racial bias, according to The Salt Lake Tribune. An October NPR poll showed that most white Americans think there's discrimination against them. Yes, if you get right down to it, people discriminate. But political discrimination isn't apparent. Pew research and other data show that whites continue to be at the top of the pack in education and finances.

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Land Grab
You've got to hand it to Canyon Country Zephyr's Jim Stiles: He doesn't back down from a good fight. We say good because there should be an ongoing dialogue about national monuments and how Americans can protect their dwindling wilderness. Stiles got his ass chewed by the Nevada State Director for the Center for Biological Diversity for an op-ed he wrote in the Deseret News, "Bears Ears: Missing Facts and Misconceptions." Stiles has long objected to what he calls industrial tourism. He doesn't like what's happened to Moab or the strong arm of the outdoor-recreation industry. He's not entirely wrong. Tourism can hurt the wilderness. Gov. Herbert offered his own op-ed about myths, and they weren't wrong, either. What is wrong is the lack of dialogue and the continued misstatements in headlines like "Utah's tenacious efforts to take back federal land stand out." Yeah, it was never Utah's land to take back.

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Female Future
Women are in the news a lot lately, what with all the accusations of sexual assault and abuse going around. Then there was Time's Person of the Year, which wasn't @realdonaldtrump. It was women who spoke out against abuse. The Deseret News was all aflutter over Provo's first woman mayor in 166 years. Barring the fact of yet another "first woman" story, she did make history. The Salt Lake Tribune then ran a story about how women are gaining ground in municipal government. Whoopee—a whole 27 percent of the Wasatch Front seats are now held by women. They're 50 percent of the population, but they're making headway in a patriarchal state.

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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.

More by Katharine Biele

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  • Citizen Revolt: November 19

    Transfer of Public Lands, Forests in Climate Change, Conversations About Hate Crimes, Coded Bias
    • Nov 18, 2020
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