It’s been quite a week for women. Plan-B Theatre Company came out with the polygamist play Suffrage, which notes the stark disparity between Utah’s backward reputation and its rich history of women’s rights. At the same time, the LDS Church threw the gals a bone by letting a woman give a prayer for the first time during the biannual General Conference. Then there’s the controversy over the morning-after pill and a federal judge’s ruling to make it universally available. This, while some states are making laws that put “life” at conception. But perhaps the worst and most immediate news for Utah women is in the realm of day care. A national study showed Utah the fifth lowest in the number of day-care facilities, and going down.
Five years into Salt Lake Mayor Ralph Becker’s reign, he’s still working on the bike issue. Now, the mayor has launched a bike-sharing initiative in an effort to reduce traffic congestion and improve air quality. There are fees attached, as well as additional charges if you check out a bike for more than 30 minutes—they’re intended for short trips only. Becker has narrowed a number of streets—some with no small opposition—in an effort to make the city more bike-friendly and less polluted. Bicyclists are more likely to choke on the emissions from surrounding cars than they are to alleviate pollution, and narrower streets and shared car/bike lines don’t exactly scream traffic decongestion. Hey, Salt Lake City can’t even synchronize its traffic lights—something promised under Rocky Anderson and determined to be too hard a math problem.
Finally, a little comic relief—really. The Association of American Editorial Cartoonists is coming to Salt Lake City June 27-29 for its annual convention. Salt Lake Tribune editorial cartoonist Pat Bagley and cartoonist Mark Pett gave a rundown of Salt Lake City for DailyCartoonist.com to show concerned AAEC members that, yes, you can get a drink in Utah, and you might even have some fun. They probably didn’t mention the Zion Curtain, even though there are plenty of editorial cartoons about this concept. And when the cartoonists—including Pat Oliphant of Punk Penguin fame—descend on Utah, there’s likely to be more. A silent auction and book-signing gala, open to the paying public, is dubbed Cartoons & Cocktails, just for good measure.