In the Moonlight
Moonlight is the first LGBTQ film to win Best Picture at the Oscars. But will it win the hearts of lawmakers? It tells the story of a young, gay, black man's life—it's not an easy one, although the trailer notes he is "guided by the kindness, support and love of the community that helps raise him." Utah just has a hard time with all that. The LDS church last year made a feeble attempt at accepting the LGBTQ community as long as they don't live the life. But their stance toward transgender youth hasn't changed. In fact, the church recently filed a brief in a U.S. Supreme Court case on transgender rights. PinkNews wrote the headline "Mormons fight for 'right to discriminate' against transgender children." Local therapists are conducting surveys for Mormons to gain a deeper understanding of the issues, The Salt Lake Tribune reported. And a John Hopkins study found that teen suicide attempts declined after same-sex marriage became legal. Think about it—in the moonlight.
The past presidential election brought with it confusion and controversy—not to mention a lot of fist-pumping. Checks and balances aside, the question of who's in charge has become paramount. Can the president just do what he wants, with or without Congress? With state's rights at the forefront, do cities have any say in their futures? Poor little Jason Chaffetz is getting the business. We all know what Utah Indivisible has been saying—or screaming—at him. CNN has been covering Chaffetz' quixotic attempts to rein in the District of Columbia, which recently passed an assisted suicide law. D.C. now has a "Hands Off" movement and has set up a PAC to help oust him. The Pew Trust offers research warning that cities and states will be in for a lot more confrontation this year. In fact, politics this year has been all about confrontation.
Trust & Transparency
It's no secret that Donald Trump dislikes the media, and therefore the First Amendment. Transparency has taken a hit in the new age of reporters as enemies of the people, and now Rep. Mike McKell, R-Spanish Fork, wants to keep secret the names of police officers involved in "critical" incidents for up to four months. OK, no one wants people harassing officers or judging them before the facts come out. But as former Salt Lake Police Chief Chris Burbank says, this kind of cover-up could hurt the public's trust of police, Deseret News reported. Local officers are already navigating the homeless scene and staving off the federal government's attempt to make them tools of immigration enforcement. They need to be recognized and named—for good or ill—because they are public servants doing the people's work.