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Articles on this Page
- 07/24/18--18:07: _Tommy Lasorda, Stev...
- 07/24/18--13:01: _Monson: Embrace the...
- 07/24/18--14:58: _Heat, crowds and ev...
- 07/24/18--13:09: _House passes Rep. S...
- 07/24/18--13:40: _Ivanka Trump shuts ...
- 07/24/18--14:31: _The heat is on as T...
- 07/24/18--19:02: _Grass fire near Sal...
- 07/24/18--15:02: _Tour de France marr...
- 07/24/18--15:39: _American Indians da...
- 07/24/18--16:16: _Todd Gurley gets re...
- 07/24/18--16:52: _Urban Meyer says as...
- 07/24/18--18:01: _Person walking on t...
- 07/24/18--18:04: _U.S. swimming natio...
- 07/24/18--19:07: _Senator to USOC, US...
- 07/24/18--19:38: _Interior Secretary ...
- 07/25/18--16:55: _Flies in the restau...
- 07/25/18--05:00: _Kirby: We’re all pi...
- 07/25/18--06:00: _Jonathan Capehart: ...
- 07/25/18--07:56: _Helicopter crew fin...
- 07/24/18--20:10: _Brewers fans cheere...
- 07/24/18--13:40: Ivanka Trump shuts down her namesake clothing brand
- 07/24/18--14:31: The heat is on as Tokyo starts two-year countdown to Olympics
- 07/24/18--15:39: American Indians dance at Liberty Park powwow on Pioneer Day
- 07/24/18--16:16: Todd Gurley gets rewarded by Rams with huge $60 million contract
- 07/24/18--18:01: Person walking on tracks is killed by TRAX train
- 07/24/18--19:07: Senator to USOC, USA Gymnastics: Take legal responsibility for abuse
Ogden • The 1968 Ogden Dodgers brawled with opponents, learned baseball from Tommy Lasorda, ate $1.99 buffets before every home game and rallied to win the league championship on the last night of the season.
Fifty years later, having told another round of stories about his summer among the greatest convergence of young talent in Utah pro baseball history, Bobby Valentine concluded, “It was glorious.”
The Affleck Park site is occupied by an auto dealership. The Ogden Raptors play a couple of miles from where the old Dodgers once roamed the field, as they celebrate the reborn franchise’s 25th season – again playing as a Los Angeles Dodgers affiliate in the Pioneer League.
The '68 Dodgers remain memorable because of who they became. Steve Garvey, Bill Buckner, Tom Paciorek and Valentine played a combined 70-plus years in the major leagues. “Find me another rookie-league club that had three eventual big-league stars,” Lasorda once told Baseball America (Paciorek, batting .381, was promoted to Class-A Bakersfield after a month in Ogden).
The Raptors annually feature a few players who will make the big leagues. Many of the Salt Lake Bees' players shuttle between Smith’s Ballpark and the Los Angeles Angels, and some of Salt Lake’s Triple-A rosters of the past included several players who went on to have nice careers in the majors.
Those four notable rookies, managed by Lasorda at age 40, make the '68 Ogden team remarkable. None of them viewed it as extraordinary at the time, though. “Man, it was really obvious that they would make it,” pitcher Richard Watson said of his famous teammates. “But you thought you could make it too.”
The convergence of talent is “harder to understand now than it was then,” Valentine said. “Looking back in that rear-view mirror, it's amazing.”
Their life revolved around the historic Ben Lomond Hotel and Chuck-A-Rama on Washington Boulevard and Affleck Park on Wall Avenue, with bus rides to Salt Lake City and three towns in southern Idaho in the Pioneer League of that era. Lasorda is at the epicenter of nearly every story told about that summer in Ogden, where the Dodgers' 39-25 record was barely good enough for the championship of the five-team league.
The '68 Dodgers are not among the most dominant teams in Pioneer League history. Salt Lake's Edmund Mantie, who posted only one other professional victory, pitched a seven-inning no-hitter against Ogden. The Dodgers lacked great pitching, aside from Sandy Vance (14-3) and Bruce Ellingsen (1.43 ERA). And even future stars needed to develop their skills, such as Garvey, the third baseman. Shortstop Bill Estey laughs about discovering why Garvey “ended up playing first base … awful arm, just awful,” citing his teammate's 23 errors in 61 games.
Trailing the Magic Valley Cowboys by one run in the eighth inning of the final game, the Dodgers rallied with eight runs to win 17-10 and finish a half-game ahead of the Idaho Falls Angels, whose roster included no recognizable names. During a visit to Salt Lake City, Garvey recalled how the Dodgers were down by five runs and won the game with a ninth-inning home run.
That's what happens in 50 years, as the tales are retold. The stories “won't die,” said Zack Minasian, a Californian who spent his high school summers managing Ogden's clubhouse. Gary Pullins, a second baseman who became BYU's longtime baseball coach, said of his featured role in one of Lasorda's stories, “Honestly, I don't really remember that. I'm sure that happened. I'm also sure with Tommy's ability to embellish things, he made it sound better.”
Here's the story: After a loss, Lasorda confided to Dutch Belnap, Ogden's general manager, that he planned to “rip into these guys pretty good.” As he detailed in his autobiography, “The Artful Dodger,” Lasorda went from player to player in Affleck Park's tiny clubhouse, addressing their shortcomings on and off the field. When he came to Pullins, 25, less talented than his younger teammates but exemplary in his attitude and approach, Lasorda ran out of criticism. All he could he say was, “I was just like you when I started out in this game. …. Now look what these [expletive] people have done to me!”
As Pullins said, “Tommy loved getting on us. That was one of his forms of motivation. And it was comical.”
There's much more material where that story came, like the way Lasorda endorsed fighting with opponents – especially Salt Lake, affiliated with the rival San Francisco Giants. By Belnap's account, Lasorda rehearsed the brawls, pretending to hold back players in the dugout, but threatening a $25 fine to the last Dodger who ran onto the field.
Valentine once squared off in a postgame duel with an Idaho Falls player, meeting him on the mound. The opponent tried a karate kick. Valentine, who had turned down a USC football scholarship offer, responded with “the best open-field tackle I could make,” he said, and dominated his rival.
Belnap also remembers Lasorda's tricking pitchers into eating in the bullpen, having Minasian bring them with a bag of peanuts and then catching them in violation of the rule – resulting in $25 fines.
To catch players breaking curfew, Lasorda gave the Ben Lomond's elevator operator a baseball and had him get autographs from players returning after midnight. That's right, more fines. “They never knew how he found out,” Minasian said.
Lasorda excelled in motivation and player development, always willing to help them improve their skills. “Even though Tommy was a self-promoter, he was a hell of a manager,” said Belnap, who later became Utah State’s basketball coach. “Tommy promised them the moon and, hell, they got there. … I learned a lot from him about believing in kids.”
Garvey, Buckner, Valentine and Paciorek would join Davey Lopes, Bill Russell (an Ogden player in 1966) and Lasorda on the 1970 Spokane Triple-A club that went 94-52 as “maybe the best team in minor-league history,” Garvey said in February, when he addressed the University of Utah's baseball banquet.
As for the other '68 Dodgers, “They weren't all big stars,” Minasian said, “but they all had that one experience.”
Estey batted .161 as a 35th-round draft choice, but can always say he started in Ogden's infield, between Garvey at third and Buckner at first. “It's a summer that I certainly will never forget, being able to say you played with some of those people,” said Estey, who became a teacher and principal in New Hampshire.
A giant, black-and-white poster from '68 of Lasorda with Buckner, Garvey and Valentine greets fans entering the Lindquist Field gates. Last September, the Raptors claimed Ogden's first Pioneer League championship since 1969, the year after Lasorda moved on to Spokane. The Raptors have clinched a first-half division title, earning a 2018 playoff berth.
Watson, who has spent nearly 40 years as an insurance agent in Texas, never advanced past Class-A ball. That makes his Pioneer League title meaningful. “I still have that ring,” he said. Garvey's memento, however, belongs to a successful bidder. In a 2013 auction, his rookie ring sold for $10,766 – more than the price for either of his two MVP trophies from Major League All-Star Games.
In an era of the NBA when every team, if it had its druthers, would be the equal of the Golden State Warriors, not just in overall team quality, but in exciting style of pinball play, the Jazz are going a different way.
Their own way.
That’s the conclusion — and a mustache, too, on an otherwise pretty portrait — to draw.
No copy-catting or caving in for them. They don’t want to prance up and down the court, wowing opponents with their skill, with their artistry, with their happy expressions of whiz-bang basketball. They don’t have two of the best shooters in the history of the game. They don’t have Kevin Durant.
And that’s OK.
They have one amazing young offensive force and a bunch of lathered-up, smudge-faced trash collectors. They have Joe Ingles.
They do not want to bow to the pressure of dressing or sweetening up their approach, even, especially, in the deep and talented Western Conference, as was demonstrated by their offseason re-collection of nearly the same team, plus one pug-like rookie, that they put on the floor a year ago.
They didn’t want to chase big-name free agents, same as other teams did. At no time did Quin Snyder march into Dennis Lindsey’s office and say, “Denny-boy, I need me some Boogie Cousins, some Carmelo Anthony … right now!”
He would have just as soon slammed his head in the door of his SUV.
They — Lindsey and Snyder — wanted to steel themselves further with a familiar crowd. They wanted the guys they already had to work their tails to improve themselves and thereby to improve the team as a whole.
Magic Johnson ran off and begged to get LeBron James. So, he did.
The Jazz put on some gloves, picked up a shovel and pushed a wheelbarrow through the mud.
They talked about making what was at the end of last season the best defense in the league a better defense. They couldn’t care less about appearances or style points or high-octane scoring. They want to score one more point than whatever the other guys score, and that’s good enough.
They didn’t want to become the Warriors or the Rockets, two of the few clubs that were better than them the last time around. They didn’t want to emulate anybody — other than maybe the 1985 Chicago Bears, a team that won a Super Bowl by hammering opponents into submission and laughing at their pain.
That’s what the Jazz are aiming to do in 2018-19.
They want pugnacious play. They want to funnel the world straight into Rudy Gobert, just like the Bears wanted to funnel everything the opponent had directly at Mike Singletary — back in the glorious day.
They want to bore teams to death. They want to pass and pass and pass and pass and pass and pass and pass — zzzzzzzzz — to get the perfect shot on offense, and then they have every intention at the other end of putting an ugly thump-thump-thump-thump-thump-thump on all of this prettification by Western foes. Haul the garbage is what they’ll do.
Lindsey recently said as much, emphasizing the point that “as long as a guy plays defense, there will be a spot for him on this team.”
Some pundits have admiration for the way the Jazz are stepping out of the mainstream, not going with the flow, not copying the crowd, but walking their own path, doing it their own way. Some think that’s a bit of brilliance on the part of Lindsey and Snyder, and they admire it, believing that is the definition of strong leadership.
Others just see it as the Jazz playing the desperate hand that is dealt them.
Everyone knows Donovan Mitchell is a dynamic, exciting player. What they are less likely to know is that he loves to put on the dungarees and mix the cement, too. Ingles isn’t the only one. Go ahead and tell Gobert what the Jazz cannot do. On go the XXXXXL overalls. Jae Crowder and Derrick Favors? Watch the sweat drip down from under the hard hats. Ricky Rubio? That was him that had the bandaged-up eye returning to the game against Detroit in the fourth quarter, a show of determination and courage that launched the Jazz onto that 29-6 finish to last season.
You think these guys are sitting back and luxuriating, floating on a raft in the Caribbean, slamming plate-loads of pasta and cheesecake, watching the clouds blow by, after a surprising season during which they were eliminated in the second round of the playoffs?
No, they are not.
They are hitting the gym, lifting weights, working on agility, grinding their teeth, looking for ways to better their defensive rating of 103.9, which was second in the NBA, hoping to ugly up a league that, under the draw of the Warriors, has sought out expensive plastic surgery.
The Jazz don’t want to go under the knife.
They want to wear their hard-earned scars.
They want to draw mustaches on the Mona Lisa, and call it good.
Brittany Bremer really wanted to attend the Days of ’47 Parade. Even though she had to walk there on crutches after undergoing surgery on her foot. Even though she’s pregnant. Even though temperatures on Tuesday soared into the 90s.
But the Florida native, her husband and two young children weren't going to miss the parade.
“When we first moved to Utah, without any family or anybody we knew, a lot of people in the community really took us in. And I feel like this is a tribute to that community that began with the pioneers and still continues today,” Bremer said.
After spending two years in Arizona, the Bremers recently returned to Utah. And they drove from their home in Kaysville to see the Salt Lake parade.
“We missed this community,” she said. “You can leave for two years and come back, and it's like you never left.”
They were just four of the tens of thousands who lined the parade route Tuesday morning, braving the heat to get a glimpse of the bands, floats, horses, antique cars, motorcycles and everything that goes into commemorating the arrival of the Mormon pioneers in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847.
“I like the bands, but there's not enough of them,” said Salt Laker Bill Loizeaux, who said he's been to a lot of Pioneer Day parades in Salt Lake City. Enough to know where to station himself, out of the sun.
“I'm losing the shade here. I may have to move my base of operation,” he said with a smile.
The parade — an annual event since 1849 — featured floats representing Utah cities, LDS stakes, colleges, businesses and a variety of other groups. It did not include the LGBTQ support group Mormons Building Bridges, which was rejected by the parade’s organizers because they deem it an “advocacy group.”
When a firetruck drove by, flashing its lights and blowing its horn, one man in the crowd called out, “Spray your hose over here!”
Cherise Marchant was also clearly committed to seeing the parade — and from the front row. She and about 20 members of her extended family spent spent two nights camping out just west of 500 East on 900 South. At least they didn’t have far to carry their tent and other supplies.
“I just live right up the street,” Marchant said. “This makes it easier to get a spot in front for the kids. And they love it. It's a family thing. We've been doing it for about five years.”
Her family did have unobstructed views of the parade, with trees to protect them from the sun. But getting there two days early wasn't absolutely necessary — about 20 feet away sat Bre Wihongi, who drove up from Lehi to attend the Salt Lake parade for the first time.
Wilhongi got there at 9 a.m. and found a great spot in the shade. And the thought of camping out to save a spot made her smile.
“We're excited for the parade, but that's a little crazy,” she said with a laugh.
What really seemed crazy was the early-arrival campers who seemingly slept through the entire parade in their tents.
The scene was almost like something Normal Rockwell would have painted, if he was still around. Babies abounded, and dogs were everywhere. Preteen boys were throwing those little, popping firecrackers at each others' feet as the smell of sunscreen filled the air.
And it was a multicultural crowd speaking multiple languages and displaying multiple allegiances. There were both BYU and Utah awnings and lawn chairs — sometimes intermixed — with the occasional oddity, including a bright orange Tennessee Volunteers awning.
And there were parents and children sounding like parents and children everywhere.
“Do we have an umbrella, by any chance?” a teenage girl asked her mother.
“No,” her mother replied, sounding put out. “I told you we should bring one, and you guys said no.”
One middle-aged man with a megaphone was providing a running commentary for other paradegoers near him, whether they wanted it or not. He fancied himself a comedian, and he thought bellowing, “Let’s hear it for the pooper scoopers!” was particularly amusing every time he said it after the horses and their support crew passed by.
It could have been anywhere in America had this been the Fourth of July. But on July 24, it's distinctive to the Beehive State.
“It’s very small-town Americana,” Bremer said. “You don’t get this anywhere else but Utah. And the kids love it. It’s fun to see them so excited.”
Washington • The U.S. House this week passed legislation by Rep. Chris Stewart to create a three-digit suicide prevention hotline, similar to summoning emergency responders by dialing 911, that would allow those considering ending their lives an easy-to-remember number to call for help.
“Every nine minutes someone commits suicide in the U.S. and for every suicide-related death there are 25 attempts,” Stewart said after the House passed the measure 379-1. “These are truly heartbreaking statistics and sadly they hit close to home.”
Stewart says the current national hotline number is “cumbersome and hard to recall.” The new proposed three-digit number has not been decided.
The Senate previously passed a companion bill by Sen. Orrin Hatch to build the nationwide hotline. The Senate or the House will now have to pass the other's version of the legislation to send it to President Donald Trump's desk.
Hatch said this week that setting up a three-digit hotline will make it more accessible to those who need help and “we can save thousands of lives by helping people find the help they need when they need it most,”
“Every minute we wait, we leave helpless hundreds of Americans who are struggling with suicidal thoughts,” Hatch said. “There are literally lives on the line here—and leaving them on hold is not an option. I’m pleased that the House has at long last taken action to move this legislation.”
The single nay vote in the House came from Rep. Justin Amash, R-Mich., who said he applauded the goal but that it wasn't within the purview of the federal government to create the hotline.
“It’s another good idea without a constitutional basis,” Amash said on Twitter. “I swear an oath to support and defend the Constitution, and I take that oath seriously. Constitutional limits are meaningless if we ignore them whenever we like the policy outcome.”
It’s another good idea without a constitutional basis. I swear an oath to support and defend the Constitution, and I take that oath seriously. Constitutional limits are meaningless if we ignore them whenever we like the policy outcome. https://t.co/coA8LJvVu0— Justin Amash (@justinamash) July 24, 2018
Washington • Ivanka Trump said she is shutting down her namesake clothing brand because of her focus on her work in Washington — a rare move by a Trump family member to choose between politics and business.
The president’s daughter and White House senior adviser said her “focus for the foreseeable future will be the work I am doing here in Washington” and called the company’s closure “the only fair outcome for my team and partners.” Trump handed over day-to-day operations after her father won the election, but continued to own the company — which raised ethical concerns, experts said.
The company, based in New York's Trump Tower, had been dropped by retailers such as Nordstrom due to flagging sales. Its dresses, shoes and handbags - all of which were made in foreign countries such as China and Indonesia - also conflicted with her push for more jobs in the United States.
The closure comes as a surprise even within the company, which has 18 employees. As recently as last week, officials had been discussing the implementation of long-delayed oversight of its foreign factory partners.
Company chief Abigail Klem said last year she had been planning her first trip to tour some of the facilities that make Ivanka Trump products, and she said the company would boost oversight of the treatment of its largely female workforce. The company never shared details of those initiatives.
Trump's brand of affordable fashion for young, professional women became a polarizing political statement, bought in solidarity by Trump supporters and boycotted vigorously by others.
"Views on the brand have become highly polarized, and it has become a lightning rod for protests and boycotts," said Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail. "While the company is still viable, doing business has become far more challenging and these problems will only increase."
Trump will retain the copyrights and intellectual property associated with her brand, which analysts say leaves the door open for future relaunches.
The announcement comes less than two weeks after Canadian department store chain Hudson's Bay Co. said it would remove all Ivanka Trump products from its website and 90 stores because of the brand's "performance."
A number of national retailers, including Lord and Taylor, Dillards, Bloomingdales and Amazon.com currently carry the first daughter’s line and will continue to do so until their agreements run out. (Jeff Bezos, founder and chief executive of Amazon, owns The Washington Post.)
Trump started her fine-jewelry line in 2007 and has since expanded to shoes, clothing and eyewear. In December, she opened a store in the lobby of Manhattan's Trump Tower, where, she said, she hoped to sell handbags, jewelry and candles directly to consumers, raising concerns among some ethics experts, who said it was yet another way for the Trump family to tap into the wallets of their supporters.
Ethics experts said the arrangement continued to raise a number of red flags a year and a half into the Trump presidency.
"Shutting down now is too little, too late," said Norman Eisen, who served as chief White House ethics lawyer under President Barack Obama. "She maintains a number of other business ties, including her trademarks in China, making this a profoundly conflicted role."
Ivanka Trump made more than $5 million from her fashion company between January 2016 and March 2017, according to financial disclosures released last year. She also received $3.9 million from her family's Washington, D.C., hotel last year, according to government disclosure forms.
Other Trump-branded businesses, many of which Ivanka had a hand in growing and in which she still holds a financial stake, have experienced differing fortunes since Trump's presidency began last year. The company's name has come down off of hotels in Toronto, Panama and New York's Soho neighborhood, as well as from some residential buildings in New York.
While the Trump Hotel in Washington charges some of the highest rates in the city and has become a popular meeting place for Republican political groups, religious organizations and businesses, data on other Trump properties including the Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida show signs of price drops as sports teams and charities move their business elsewhere.
Sales data on Trump-branded condominiums in New York City show them attracting lower prices than competing properties since Trump entered office. Meanwhile, the Trump Organization's plans to dramatically expand its hotel portfolio in the U.S. have failed to progress, having opened no hotels under its announced 'Scion' and 'American Idea' brands.
The Washington Post’s Jonathan O’Connell contributed to this report.
Tokyo • The 2020 Olympics will open in two years, and the heat is on.
Since being awarded the games, which will be the largest ever with 33 sports and 339 events, Tokyo organizers have had to deal with a series of problems ranging from stadium and construction delays , natural disasters and a scandal involving the official logo.
Most of the obstacles have been cleared up, but a deadly heatwave gripping Japan has focused organizers on ways to keep fans and athletes cool when the Olympics begin on July 24, 2020.
Potential for scorching summer conditions has always concerned organizers, with temperatures in central Tokyo often exceeding 35 Celsius (95 Fahrenheit) in July and August, made more difficult because of high humidity.
This summer heatwave has resulted in more than 65 deaths and sent tens of thousands to hospitals. The temperature on Monday reached 41.1 Celsius (106 Fahrenheit), the highest ever recorded in Japan.
Experts have warned the risk of heatstroke in Tokyo has escalated in recent years, while noting the Olympics are expected to take place in conditions when sports activities should normally be halted.
"We are mindful that we do have to prepare for extreme heat," John Coates, head of the IOC's coordination commission for the Tokyo Games, told a recent news conference.
The 1964 Games in Tokyo were held in October to avoid the harshest of the heat. That was before the Olympics schedule was influenced by rights-paying broadcasters and sponsors.
Local organizers are doing what they can to help athletes combat the conditions. The marathon and some other outside events will be held early in the morning to avoid extreme heat.
The federal and the Tokyo metropolitan governments are also planning to lay pavements that emit less surface heat and plant taller roadside trees for shade.
"The spectators as well as the athletes have to be taken care of," Coates said. "The timing of the marathon and road walks will be as early as possible as they have been in previous games to beat the heat."
Organizers want the games to help showcase Japan's recovery from the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that took more than 18,000 lives and triggered meltdowns at the Fukushima nuclear power plant.
While reconstruction from the disaster is making steady progress, and work on the new 68,000-seat main stadium in Tokyo is 40 percent complete, more than 70,000 people remain displaced from their communities.
The construction of the main stadium was more than a year behind schedule when it started in December 2016, as earlier plans were scrapped because of spiraling costs and a contentious design.
The Japanese government approved the new 150 billion yen ($1.5 billion) stadium, which is expected to be completed in November of 2019. The previous construction timeline would have allowed the main stadium to host the 2019 Rugby World Cup final on Nov. 2 as a test event, but that idea was scrapped.
Meanwhile, organizers say the other newly-constructed venues are 20 to 40 percent complete.
The torch relay will start March 26, 2020, in Fukushima, an area hit hard by the disaster.
Coates said local organizers are on track with 24 months to go.
“Tokyo 2020 comes a significant step closer to delivering an Olympic Games that will bring Japan and the world together,” he said. “The organizing committee has presented considerable progress ... especially as it related to venue and operational readiness.”
Five people were injured and one home was damaged by a fast-moving grass fire near Salt Lake City’s Ensign Peak on Tuesday. And Salt Lake City Fire officials say it could have been much worse.
They had evacuated 40 houses as flames spread through about 100 acres near the state’s Capitol.
“It was a pretty tremendous effort, honestly, to knock down a fire like that in this heat, in two and a half hours,” said Audra Sorensen, a spokeswoman for the fire department. “Our firefighters were definitely aggressive, and strategic, and they did great work.”
Three of those firefighters were hospitalized. Two suffered from heat exhaustion and smoke inhalation. One had an injured leg. Between 50 and 60 firefighters responded to the fire.
Two residents also were hospitalize with smoke inhalation.
The fire melted the siding on one home, but no other structure was damaged.
Smoke from the fire could be seen throughout the valley. And helicopters and portable water tanks were deployed to fight the blaze. By about 7 p.m., the department said the fire was roughly 95 percent contained.
“It is under control and now we are just looking for hotspots,” Sorensen said.
Just this year @slcCouncil approved our purchase of portable water tanks to fight wildfire. Today we used them to knock down the incident at #ensignpeak. Crews will be here through the night but the fire is nearly all contained. pic.twitter.com/OPti8TEXuv— Salt Lake City Fire Department (@slcfire) July 24, 2018
Noting the dry conditions and the potential danger of fireworks or outdoor grilling, she said, “Maybe today is the best day for a swim."
Fireworks are banned in this area. The cause of the fire is unknown at this time.
Jane Marquardt said the fire came within four feet of her home. Neighbors helped to spray the area with their hoses, Marquardt said, until firefighters “came in droves.”
"They've been wonderful," she said. "They got right on this fire and saved our house."
Marquardt said her home experienced some smoke and landscaping damage but no structural damages.
Fire crews promised to watch the area over night to make sure it doesn’t restart.
Bagneres-de-Luchon, France • Tear gas in riders' eyes. A farmers' protest blocking the road. Two key crashes on dangerous descents.
The only thing lacking from the wild 16th stage of the Tour de France on Tuesday was a shakeup in the overall standings.
Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe took advantage of his downhill skills to win the first of three mountainous legs in the Pyrenees, which was briefly interrupted when police used tear gas to disperse a farmers' protest that had blocked the road with bales of hay.
The overall standings were unchanged. Geraint Thomas in the yellow jersey, second-placed Chris Froome and third-placed Tom Dumoulin all crossed together nearly nine minutes behind.
The farmers' protest occurred 30 kilometers into the 218-kilometer (135.5-mile) leg from Carcassonne to Bagneres-de-Luchon.
Thomas, Froome, world champion Peter Sagan and other riders were treated with eye drops due to the tear gas amid a 15-minute delay.
"I just felt my throat and nose were burning, eyes were burning afterward," Froome said. "But I think quite a lot of riders were in a similar situation.
"Thankfully the effect didn't last long," Froome added. "It was just a temporary thing with stinging and burning."
It was the latest in a series of incidents involving spectators during this year's race, with Team Sky riders being pushed and spat on and 2014 champion Vincenzo Nibali having his back broken in a crash when a fan caught their camera strap on his handlebars.
"We feel safe. Obviously on some of the climbs not everyone's our fans but we don't feel threatened," Thomas said. "It's hard in cycling when you're just on the open road. It's not like football or something. Everyone's doing the best they can and hopefully everyone can just behave and let us race."
The small group of farmers from the Aude department were protesting a planned reduction of European Union funding, according to French authorities.
"We are not going to lock the riders in a stadium or a tennis court," Tour director Christian Prudhomme said. "People should not block the road, no matter what causes they are fighting for."
Thomas remained 1 minute, 39 seconds ahead of four-time champion Froome, with Dumoulin 1:50 back.
Alaphilippe took the lead when Adam Yates crashed on a technical descent in the finale.
"I knew the finale was tricky," Alaphilippe said. "I was sad for (Yates) but it could have happened to me, too, because I took a lot of risks. ... I went all out for 220 kilometers today. I'm exhausted."
Belgian rider Philippe Gilbert was leading when he crashed earlier in the stage while descending from the Col de Portet-d'Aspet, hitting a wall and flipping off his bike spectacularly but avoiding major injury. It was the same descent where Italian rider Fabio Casartelli died during the 1995 Tour.
"I thought I was broken everywhere," said Gilbert, a teammate of Alaphilippe's on the Quick-Step team. "But I ended up more or less OK."
However, Quick-Step later announced that Gilbert, a former world champion, was withdrawing from the Tour with a fracture on his left kneecap.
"This isn't how I wanted to finish my Tour and leaving it like this really hurts," Gilbert said.
Alaphilippe also won the 10th stage and is wearing the polka-dot jersey of the mountains classification leader.
Yates led Alaphilippe by 20 seconds at the top of the Col du Portillon climb 10 kilometers from the finish but lost control with 6K to go, falling to the pavement on a left turn and sliding across the road.
"You never know what's coming up on some of these corners," Yates said. "There was a bit of downforce or something and I came down, that's all there is to it.
"Morale's pretty damaged right now. When you come so close to winning a stage of the Tour, it's pretty devastating," added Yates, who won the young rider classification in the Tour two years ago.
Alaphilippe, who was already gaining ground on Yates, quickly passed the British rider and had time to celebrate before the finish, smiling at the crowd and shaking his head in disbelief.
Spanish rider Gorka Izaguirre finished second, 15 seconds behind, and Yates crossed third with the same time.
The race remains in the Pyrenees on Wednesday for what could be the most challenging stage of the Tour, a 65-kilometer leg from Bagneres-de Luchon to Saint-Lary-Soulan Col du Portet that features three grueling climbs, including an uphill finish — and hardly a stretch of flat road.
“It’s going to be massively decisive,” Thomas said. “That last climb is possibly the toughest climb in the Tour — 16 kilometers, 2,200 meters (altitude). There’s definitely going to be some splits.”
On Pioneer Day, Ira Walks was in Liberty Park celebrating his heritage — a tradition that goes back a lot further than the days of 1847.
A member of the Crow Nation, Walks was there to dance at the annual Native American Celebration in the Park Powwow.
“This is what my family has done for generations. I do this to pass down our tradition to our family,” said the Pocatello, Idaho, man. “I’m here with my brother and my grandson to dance. It’s the Crow traditional dance, and we’re brought up doing it.”
The Mormon pioneers weren't the first ones to live in the Salt Lake Valley. And the pre-1847 populace is remembered in the annual Native American Celebration in the Park Powwow.
“We just want to share our traditions with the people here,” Walks said. “It’s important to us to keep this alive.”
The Days of ’47 Parade reached an end at Liberty Park, feeding directly into the powwow. And the powwow featured dancers from a number of tribes performing throughout the afternoon and evening, a play area — complete with inflatable bounce houses and slides — for the kids, and a variety of vendors selling native crafts.
And there was native food. Well, Navajo tacos, at least, along with food trucks featuring Korean barbecue, Hawaiian barbecue, pizza and falafels.
Irvine, Calif. • Todd Gurley was the key to the Los Angeles Rams' offensive transformation last season, and the Rams have rewarded their star running back with a game-changing contract.
The NFL's offensive player of the year agreed to a four-year, $60 million contract extension through 2023 with the Rams on Tuesday.
A person with knowledge of the deal, speaking on condition of anonymity because the terms weren't publicly announced, confirmed to The Associated Press that Gurley's contract extension contains $45 million in guaranteed money, a $20 million signing bonus and the NFL's largest average annual value for a running back contract. ESPN first reported the terms.
General manager Les Snead said the Rams wanted "to get ahead of the curve" by signing Gurley two years before his rookie contract expires. They've also set a new benchmark for running back salaries to secure a cornerstone of a team with Super Bowl aspirations.
"He's a big part of who we are and where we're going," Snead said. "It's not only Todd, but a lot of guys we want to make Rams for a long time and be part of our core."
Gurley isn't due to report to training camp at UC Irvine until Wednesday. His first public reaction was to post a black-and-white Instagram photo of himself with a broad smile and the caption: "Amazing..."
Gurley was a league standout in his third NFL season while playing in first-year coach Sean McVay's explosive offense. He finished second in the NFL with 1,305 yards rushing and 13 touchdowns while catching 64 passes for 788 yards and six more TDs.
"What a special player he is," McVay said. "I think last year's production isn't really a (complete) reflection of the value he provides, because he did such a great job, but he's so much more than that to our team — the way that he competes in protection, the way that he works, and the way that rubs off on his teammates."
Along with being a handsome reward for a burgeoning NFL star, Gurley's deal sets a new standard in the market for ball-carriers such as Dallas' Ezekiel Elliott and Arizona's David Johnson — and for Pittsburgh's Le'Veon Bell after he plays out this season on the franchise tag.
Bell, who received public support from Gurley during his contentious recent negotiations with the Steelers, returned the love on Twitter, along with an additional comment about his own failure to get a big contract in Pittsburgh: "lol and ppl thought I was trippin?"
Gurley was the offensive rookie of the year in 2015 for the Rams, rewarding their gamble on him with the 10th overall pick. He overcame a torn knee ligament in his final season with the Georgia Bulldogs to rush for 1,106 yards with St. Louis.
Gurley struggled as part of the NFL's worst offense during the Rams' relocation season in 2016, with his yards-per-carry average dropping from 4.8 to 3.2.
That average shot right back up to 4.7 last season while he starred for the NFC West champions behind a stout offensive line that had the same starters for 15 consecutive weeks. Gurley likely would have won the NFL rushing title if McVay hadn't rested him for the Rams' regular-season finale ahead of their playoff loss to Atlanta.
Gurley has also grown swiftly as a receiver in his three seasons, increasing his catches from 21 as a rookie to 43 and then 64 last season.
Gurley's contributions to the Rams last season drew praise from Eric Dickerson, the most popular player in Los Angeles Rams history for his 1980s exploits as a record-setting running back. Steven Jackson, the Rams' franchise rushing leader, also hailed Gurley's contract Tuesday on Twitter.
"Great to see Les Snead and the (at)RamsNFL front office prioritize the running game!" Jackson tweeted. "To not only draft (Gurley) early, but now lock him into a long-term deal to ensure he continues to thrive as a Ram is huge!"
The Rams haven't been shy about securing several key pieces of their talented roster during this offseason, which began with the high-profile additions of Ndamukong Suh and cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib. Last week, Los Angeles signed receiver Brandin Cooks to a five-year, $80 million extension before he catches his first pass with the Rams.
But an even bigger issue still looms for Los Angeles: defensive tackle Aaron Donald still doesn't have a new contract two days before the first practice of training camp.
Donald, the NFL's defensive player of the year, and the Rams have been working on a long-term extension since early last year. The powerhouse lineman is seeking a game-changing contract that would make him one of the NFL's highest-paid players, but hasn't yet been successful.
Donald skipped all of training camp last year in a holdout, and he missed all of the Rams' offseason activities this spring.
Snead and McVay acknowledged Donald might not report to training camp Wednesday, but they weren't sure about his plans. Snead is still in active negotiations with Donald's representatives at CAA Sports.
"I do know we've still got time to get something done," Snead said.
Donald is under contract for this season for nearly $6.9 million in the fifth year of his rookie contract.
“We’re simultaneously working to make Aaron a Ram a long time,” Snead said. “That’s the goal. Aaron is a big part of who we are, where we want to go, but the details and all that, we’re going to continue the course of keeping them in-house.”
Chicago • Ohio State coach Urban Meyer has a saying he uses with his program: Event + Response (equals) Outcome.
The outcome this time was the dismissal of a longtime assistant.
Meyer is facing questions about his relationship with former receivers coach Zach Smith, who was fired Monday after an Ohio court granted a domestic violence protective order to Smith's ex-wife last week.
Part of his answer was to fall back on the slogan.
"It's something our team lives by, E plus R equals O. You press pause and get your mind right and step up, press pause and gather information, get your mind right, gather energy, and then step up to do the right thing," Meyer said Tuesday. "That's the position I hold. That's how we did that."
Smith, the grandson of former Ohio State coach Earle Bruce, was charged in May with misdemeanor criminal trespass. At the time of the charge, Smith's attorney said Smith's ex-wife had accused him of driving to her apartment after she told him they would meet elsewhere so he could drop off their son.
Smith pleaded not guilty last month. Courtney Smith asked for a civil protection order on Friday, and her request was granted. A hearing has been scheduled for Aug. 3.
Zach Smith was accused of aggravated battery on his then-pregnant wife in 2009 while he was a graduate assistant on Meyer's staff at Florida. The charge was dropped because of insufficient evidence, and Meyer, who calls the late Bruce one of his biggest mentors, brought Smith along when he took over at Ohio State before the 2012 season.
"My comments about '09, obviously a long time ago, but whenever you get an accusation, you contact your superior and wait to find out what happened," Meyer said at Big Ten football media days. "You let the people do their jobs. You let, I guess, the legal course to run its course and then ask them, because they're experts.
"It came back to me. We found out what happened. We met with both parties. We found there were no charges. Everything was dropped. There was a very young couple and I saw a very talented coach."
The Smiths divorced in 2016. Asked if Smith's firing had anything to do with the allegations becoming public, Meyer acknowledged it was a factor.
"I really don't care about that," Meyer said. "I try to stay focused on what's the most important thing. That's our players and our team.
"But I do understand the value. ... The Ohio State University is bigger than all of us. So you have to do what's right by them. And the timing. It wasn't just my decision. It was a group effort on several people that I rely on."
Meyer said he probably will make a decision on Smith's replacement by the end of the week. He might not have to look very far, with former NFL receiver and Ohio State alum Brian Hartline already on staff as a quality control assistant working with the team's receivers.
It's an uncharacteristic amount of upheaval for Ohio State so close to the season. The Buckeyes open against Oregon State on Sept. 1, and the expectations in Columbus are as high as ever.
Ohio State returns 49 lettermen from last season, when it went 12-2 and beat Southern California 24-7 in the Cotton Bowl. One of its deepest position groups is receiver, where Parris Campbell, Terry McLaurin and Austin Mack are all back from a year ago.
“I think the main focus and the main goal for the wideout room right now is just to learn on each other,” Campbell said. “We need each other in a moment like this. It’s a huge loss, but I think we’ll move forward.”
A person walking on the TRAX line in South Salt Lake was struck and killed by a train Monday night.
The unidentified victim was on the track just south of the Millcreek Station at 210 West 3300 South. According to UTA, the incident took place about 9:45 p.m. in an area with little lighting, and the operator of the northbound train did not see the victim until just before impact.
It was the third death involving a UTA train in 10 days. On July 14, Delwin Laughridge, 53, of American Fork, was killed by a FrontRunner train when he went under the crossing arm near 200 South 500 West and tried to cross the tracks.
And on Thursday, Cameron Hooyer, 23, of Salt Lake City was killed when he was riding with a large group of bicyclists and was caught on the tracks at 900 South 600 West by a FrontRunner train when the warning arms went down.
Irvine, Calif. • Two years to the day the Tokyo Olympics open, Katie Ledecky is swimming as fast as ever, Caeleb Dressel is heralded as a potential Michael Phelps and Missy Franklin is attempting a comeback.
As for Ryan Lochte, he's banned again.
Ledecky is entered in five events at this week's U.S. national championships, including a double in the 100-meter freestyle and 800 free on Wednesday. The five-time Olympic champion is back in Irvine, where she set one of her 14 world records in the 400 free at the 2014 edition of the meet.
"That was a memorable one, not to say all of them aren't," Ledecky said Tuesday. "But that was especially memorable and that was my first meet at this pool. I do like this pool, and I'm hoping that I can put up some good swims this week."
Dressel has the most ambitious schedule of anyone, similar to what Phelps did in his heyday. Dressel is entered in eight events, having added the 200 individual medley and 50 and 100 breaststroke races.
Dressel will be looking to build on his seven-gold medal performance at last year's world championships.
There's a lot on the line in the meet that runs through Sunday.
The results decide the U.S. team for the Pan Pacific Championships in Tokyo next month, as well as next year's world championships, World University Games and Pan American Games.
Lochte is one swimmer who won't be part of it.
He was banned for 14 months by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency on Monday for getting an excessive amount of an intravenous infusion of vitamins in May. The 12-time Olympic medalist incriminated himself by posting a photo of the outing to a clinic on his Instagram account, which triggered USADA's investigation.
Lochte was set to swim four events this week, and several of his teammates were eager to see him at nationals for the first time since 2016. He was banned for 10 months by USA Swimming after the Rio de Janeiro Olympics for lying about being robbed along with three teammates at a Rio gas station.
Lochte's latest punishment was the second doping violation by a national team member in the last few days.
Madisyn Cox was hit with a two-year suspension last week after trimetazidine showed up in an out-of-competition doping test in February. Her suspension ends in March 2020. The substance can be used medically to treat tinnitus, dizziness and chest pain.
Cox, who swam at Texas, was entered in five events this week. She would have been seeded second in the 200 individual medley. At last year's world championships in Hungary, Cox won gold as a member of the 800 freestyle relay and bronze in the 200 IM.
"I was in shock when I saw the news," said Olympic backstroke champion Ryan Murphy, a friend of Cox. "I'm definitely hurting for her, and it's really sad to see one of our own go down like that."
Five-time Olympic gold medalist Nathan Adrian said the suspensions send a message that the U.S. takes clean sports seriously.
"To be totally honest, I think we're watching the American team be leaders in accountability right now," he said. "I don't think that this punishment would have necessarily been as strict if they were part of certain other federations."
Although Adrian didn't mention his name, Chinese distance star Sun Yang received a three-month ban after testing positive for trimetazidine in 2014.
Adrian said U.S. swimmers have been warned for years that if they violate the rules, whether accidentally or not, they could face bans.
"You're seeing us kind of stay true to our word," he said. "If that happened in the U.S., we would bring on harsh repercussions. It would be nice if the rest of the world kind of did the same thing, felt that they were not there to protect their athletes, that they were there to govern their sport."
Olympic 100 breaststroke champion Lilly King famously called out Yuliya Efimova of Russia at the Rio Games. Efimova served a 16-month doping ban for failing a drug test and returned to be a major rival of King's in the breaststroke events.
King said it was hard to see Lochte, a teammate she has looked up to, get in trouble.
"But then again, you can't break the rules like that," she said. "I appreciate that FINA and WADA and USADA and all the doping agencies are cracking down on that now because it's something that needs to happen."
Lochte was expected to fully launch his comeback toward Tokyo this week.
Instead, it will be Franklin who is in comeback mode. The darling of the 2012 London Games is competing at her first nationals in two years, although she has scaled her schedule down to two events: the 100 and 200 freestyles.
Senators questioned the sincerity of reforms at the U.S. Olympic Committee, USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University in the wake of sex-abuse scandals — using legal papers, emails and accounts of conversations to portray organizations that still don’t fully grasp the pain they inflicted.
At a hearing Tuesday in Washington, Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut criticized leaders of the USOC and USA Gymnastics for court filings this month that seek to absolve the federations of legal responsibility for Larry Nassar’s sex-abuse crimes.
Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire and others blistered Michigan State’s interim president, John Engler, for insensitive emails and comments he made during negotiations that produced a $500 million settlement with sex-abuse victims who attended the school.
“I think you have some repair work to do here today, to put it mildly,” Hassan said, prompting applause from the 80 or so victims who attended the hearing.
Nassar, a longtime sports doctor at Michigan State who also volunteered as the team physician for USA Gymnastics, is serving decades in prison for child pornography and other crimes after hundreds of women said he sexually abused them under the guise of medical care.
Last Friday, the USOC filed a motion to be removed as a defendant in lawsuits filed by gold-medal gymnasts Aly Raisman, Jordyn Wieber and McKayla Maroney, arguing that it had no legal responsibility for Nassar’s actions.
“There are all kinds of defenses the parties can make, but there’s also a moral responsibility here,” Blumenthal said. “If you’re serious and sincere, you will withdraw (the court filings). You need to be part of the legal solution, not just come here and apologize.”
USA Gymnastics filed papers in a different lawsuit that also deny legal liability for Nassar’s actions, in part because he wasn’t on the payroll. Blumenthal seized on this wording in the USAG court filing: “USAG denies that Nassar was an employee or agent of USAG.”
When he pressed CEO Kerry Perry on that point, she said she was unaware of the court filing but that, indeed, “Larry Nassar was absolutely an agent of USA Gymnastics.”
Also weighing in was Han Xiao, a table tennis player who serves as the USOC’s athletes’ representative. He called the sex-abuse scandal part of a larger problem in Olympic sports, in which the USOC and the sports organizations hold an inordinate amount of power over the athletes.
That power structure, Han said, renders athletes unwilling or unable to complain about issues including sex abuse, funding and training for fear of retribution. He applauded the launch of the U.S. Center for SafeSport, but said it needs additional sources of funding — most comes from the USOC and the sports organizations — to ensure it is independent from the sway of those federations.
“Personally, I don’t think so,” Han answered when asked if he heard anything at the hearing that led him to believe cultural change would occur. “I don’t think so much that it’s a failing organization. It’s a failing of the entire system, the way it’s set up.”
The harshest criticism over the two-hour hearing was saved for Engler, who wrote in an April email that the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar, Rachel Denhollander, was likely to get a “kickback” from her lawyer for her role in the “manipulation” of survivors. Engler also was questioned about a conversation with survivor Kaylee Lorincz, in which Lorincz claimed he asked her if she would accept a check for $250,000 .
Engler repeatedly denied making such an offer. He conceded the email was a mistake.
“Emotions do get high. It’s an adversarial process,” Engler said. “I confess to getting very frustrated. But at the end of the day, we did get a settlement done, we fixed policies and strengthened accountability.”
Also criticized, but not represented at the witness table, was the FBI, which knew of allegations against Nassar for months before his arrest. At least 40 girls and women were molested between the time the FBI learned of the allegations and when Denhollander went public.
The FBI’s actions are now under review by the Department of Justice’s inspection division, though Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa was skeptical.
“I see this as a move to maybe protect the FBI from some embarrassment,” he said.
The culminating night of the annual Days of ’47 rodeo kicked off with a special visit from a member of President Donald Trump’s cabinet.
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, whose review of public lands and recommendations led to the reduction of Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments, offered brief remarks on the topic of religious freedom Tuesday evening as the rodeo’s Pioneer Day event got underway.
“Utah also understands that freedom of religion is a cornerstone of American exceptionalism,” Zinke said.
The bulk of Zinke’s remarks consisted of reading a statement by Trump, released earlier in the day Tuesday, recognizing Utah’s Pioneer Day celebration and the settlement of Mormon pioneers in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847.
“Today we have a man in the White House who respects religious freedom,” Zinke said. “That man is Donald J. Trump.”
Zinke’s visit came shortly after the Interior Department was caught up in additional controversy surrounding the reduction of national monuments. Documents released by the department, and later retracted, showed that Zinke’s survey of the nation’s protected lands dismissed the benefits of preservation — such as tourism and archaeological research — in deference to logging, ranching and other economic interests that are hindered by a monument designation.
Utah’s elected leaders lobbied Trump to reduce the size and scope of the state’s monuments. The reduction order was signed during a visit by the president to the state’s Capitol, which included a tour of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Welfare Square.
Zinke has also suggested relocating the headquarters of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, or BLM, to the West, with Salt Lake City and Denver reportedly on the short list of potential sites. Most of the land managed by BLM is located in the western states.
Following his remarks Tuesday, Zinke rode on horseback while leading a precession of Utah and Days of ’47 dignitaries around the rodeo arena. He waved a white-gloved hand to the applauding crowd, receiving a particularly robust greeting from Utah House Speaker Greg Hughes, R-Draper, who was seated in the lower rows on the stadium’s west side.
“There he is!” Hughes cheered, pointing to Zinke. “That’s our guy. That’s our guy!”
Zinke was introduced at the event by Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, who described the secretary as a “great patriot” and friend of Utah. Herbert also praised Zinke for his support of “multiple use” on public lands, a shorthand expression for maintaining economic and recreation interests in preserved areas.
“Like [Theodore] Roosevelt,” Herbert said of Zinke, “he appreciates the beauty and the productivity of our public lands.”
As president, Theodore Roosevelt advocated for and signed legislation creating the National Park System.
Update • The Salt Lake County Health Department allowed this restaurant to reopen on July 23, 2018.
July 19, 2018 • Inspectors with the Salt Lake County Health Department shut down a West Valley City restaurant Thursday after finding numerous health code violations including flies, a pen stored in the potato slicer and a broken table being stabilized with a rock.
Carlos’s Kitchen #2, 4247 W. 3500 South, was “closed for presenting an imminent health hazard,” according to a report on the department website.
The restaurant, which serves Salvadoran food, was cited for 30 violations — several of which were critical to human health, the notice shows. The restaurant will remain closed until the owner can fix the problem and inspectors say it is safe for diners
Among the problems:
• Numerous flies in the facility.
• A pen stored in the potato slicer.
• A fly swatter on top of a food container.
• Raw meat stored above ready-to-eat foods in the refrigerator.
• A table, with two broken legs, being held up up by a rock.
• Cooked chicken, sausage, pork, beans, rice, cheese and raw eggs being held at unsafe temperatures.
• Employee’s personal beverages not separated from food-preparation areas.
A couple of days ago, while checking out at a grocery store, I struck up a dangerous conversation with the clerk.
Note: Any conversation between another human being and me is perilous. It’s because I’m never sure what the topic will be, particularly when it’s my turn to speak.
Her • “How ya doing today, sir?”
Me • “Fat, mean and stupid.”
That earned a slight smile, so I decided to press my luck. I took a guess that the clerk was not from Utah. She was black, possibly from Africa. I could tell that she was proud of her heritage by the accessories she wore, many of them distinctively African in design.
Me • “You’re not from these parts.”
Her • [wry smile] “No, sir.”
She said she’d been in Utah for five months. From experience, I know the transition can be tough even for people like me — white and Mormon — so I inquired whether she was getting used to it yet. She said no, again with a small grin.
When I asked where she was from, she said Jacksonville, Fla. It was our first bit of common ground (other than being human). I told her that I had once spent a day in Jacksonville.
Her • “Did you like it?”
Me • “I dunno. I was locked up for most of it.”
While she checked my groceries, we talked about being stuck in places that weren’t all that appealing. It occurred to me that she was a Utah pioneer in her own right.
Just like my Mormon pioneer ancestors, she had traveled from the other side of the country and found herself in a new place that wasn’t all that inviting — and nothing at all like where she came from.
I explained that I, too, had been dragged here against my will nearly 50 years ago.
Her • “Are you used to it yet?”
Me • “Damn, I hope not.”
Ending up in Utah is something a lot of people never expected to happen to them. Some acclimate successfully; others don’t.
My ancestors — devout LDS pioneers — weren’t exactly happy about traveling all the way from England to live in a desert. If the promise of a celestial reward hadn’t been part of the deal, I doubt they would have bothered.
On his first night in “this is the place,” Great-Great-Grandpa Korihor wrote, “Somebody — I’m not saying who — is out of his #&@#! mind!”
Ever since then, people have been trekking to Zion for family, new jobs, the military or the skiing. Some eventually figured it out enough to live tolerably well. Others took their gripes with them when they left.
My own acceptance of the new reality was made easier by those who took time to give me pointers on how to cope in Zion. One of my earliest Utah friends was Bammer, who had moved here from somewhere else when he was in grade school.
“Pretend you’re a castaway on some whole other planet, inhabited by all sorts of strange but relatively harmless creatures. You’ll never entirely fit in. So you can either find a way to make it fun — or to make it funny.”
Best advice this Utah pioneer ever got.
"It's like he took a knee to Putin."
"He" is President Donald Trump. The person who made this blunt comment about Trump's disgraceful press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki on July 16 was Mitch Landrieu. "It really is a national embarrassment," said the recently departed two-term mayor of New Orleans. "Russia's attempt to completely destabilize our democracy is an attack on the country, and I think the president's response is unbelievably weak."
Ever since Landrieu delivered an equally blunt speech on race and the removal of Confederate statues and monuments from his city, folks see him as a no-nonsense leader who should run to replace Trump. “It really is humbling for people to think that I could do that,” said Landrieu during a live-event recording of the latest episode of “Cape Up” at the “Opportunity 2020” conference, organized by the center-left think tank Third Way. “I’m not planning on running right now. I’m not saying that I’m [not] running and trying to run. I’m not doing that. I hear it, but what I attribute that to is the public being really thirsty for change.”
But Landrieu cautioned Democrats about obsessing over the 2020 presidential election to the neglect of the 2018 midterm elections this November. "We do spend a lot of time worrying about 2020 really, really early," he said. "I would ask people to quit doing that, not as an evasion, but 2018 is the most important thing.
“It should be abundantly clear to Americans that if the leadership of Congress — who happens to be Republicans but, by the way, they represent all of us — that if they are not going to step up to the plate and limit the damage that President Trump can do to us on the international stage, then we ought to replace them,” Landrieu said about the American electorate. “And you know what? If we give it to the Democrats and they don’t do it, they ought to throw us out, too.”
I'm not one of those who thinks that what's happening in the Democratic Party is an identity crisis. Democrats know what their goals are, and they are united in a drive to move forward to help as many people as possible achieve their version of the American dream. They just disagree on how to get there. Even though he's not running to lead the party, Landrieu has clear ideas on which path he believes Dems should take.
"If you can't win an election, you can't govern," said Landrieu to applause. "We shouldn't make the same mistake that the Republican Party's making right now - although they're winning - of being a small-tent, exclusive party." When I asked him how Democrats should do battle with Trump, who uses his Twitter feed to electronically strafe anyone who dares criticize him, Landrieu thought it best to not overreact to the tweets. "The thing that you don't do is to have an equal and opposite reaction," he told me. "We're not going to beat them by being like them."
Landrieu's views on the Democratic Party came into sharper focus the more he talked about how Dems should deal with the president.
“I wouldn’t concede the issues of faith, family or country to the National Republican Party. Americans who are Democrats and independents are every bit as faithful and as patriotic and work [as] hard as everybody else. ...”
"One of the challenges, I think, that we have is Democrats are in our DNA committed to making sure that civil liberties and civil rights of people are protected, which sometimes says that we're fighting culture wars more than we should. The bread and butter issues really do matter."
"The people of America want to feel safe. And I think security is a big issue, but in a thoughtful, right way, not in a way when you kneecap your friends and hug your enemies."
And Landrieu thinks it's "a big mistake" for Democratic candidates to run a base election. "What you have to do, then," he said, "is to work really hard to find common ground and push the issue about how everybody, irrespective of race, creed, color, national origin, is going to have an equal opportunity and share responsibility." He also said that demands for policy purity are problematic. "Consensus, in terms of winning, is better, and consensus in terms of governing is always better," Landrieu advised.
But listen to the podcast to hear Landrieu talk about his book "In the Shadow of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History." It's a memoir where the former Big Easy mayor and former lieutenant governor of Louisiana describes his journey from ignorance to clear understanding of the importance of the three statues and one monument he ultimately removed. And in his reflections, Landrieu delves into race like no other white Southerner has since former president Bill Clinton.
“The way that most white people have a discussion about race is, well, we had the Revolution, then we had the Civil War, and then we had the civil rights movement. Okay, that’s good. We’re done with that because we elected a black president,” Landrieu explained. “On race, what I’ve learned over time, since the time that I was born until today, is that you can’t go around it; you can’t go over it; you can’t go under it. You actually have to go through it and talk through it so there can be some reconciliation. And we really haven’t had that.”
Jonathan Capehart is a member of The Washington Post editorial board, writes for the PostPartisan blog and is host of the “Cape Up” podcast.
A search and rescue crew flying a state helicopter spotted the body of a Utah man on Tuesday.
Ray Humpherys of South Jordan died at age 66. He had been missing for six days after he left his family campsite to fetch water.
A spotter aboard the Department of Public Safety helicopter saw his gray clothing about 3 p.m. Tuesday and led search crews to his body, which was in the Middle Fork drainage area about 1½ miles from where he was last seen July 18.
The Summit County Sheriff's Office said his injuries were "consistent with the harsh terrain and environment."
“We are glad there is closure, but of course we are sad at the outcome,” said Summit County Lt. Andrew Wright.
Through the Sheriff’s Office, the Humphreys family declined to comment.
Hundreds of volunteers have helped in the search, though that volunteer effort ended Monday.
When the fans began to rise, Khalif Rainey’s friends who sat in the stands at Milwaukee’s Miller Park picked up their camera phones just as they picked up their jaws. They snapped photos and videos, just to make sure they weren’t imagining what was happening.
"They were saying, 'I can't believe what I just witnessed,'" Rainey said. And who could? Here was a ballpark faced with how to respond to a pitcher who had posted on social media several years ago, vile, misogynistic, racist, homophobic vitriol. The acts were egregious, even if they were years old. The response was a full-throated standing ovation.
"It was truly a sad moment," Rainey said. "I just thought, 'I can't believe this is where we are as a community.'"
Let’s do this: Let’s take Josh Hader at his word. (Work with me here for a minute.) We are supposed to be a forgiving nation, right? So if he says what he posted — phrases such as “white power” and slurs demeaning all manner of people — “were never my beliefs,” then, fine. He was 17 then, not 24, as he is now. He was a high school student in Maryland, then, not an All-Star relief pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers, as he is now.
"I was young," he told reporters late last week. "I was saying stuff out of ignorance and not what I meant."
Hader called them mistakes. He said they didn’t represent who he is. And the good people of Wisconsin, they heard him. They trusted him. Saturday against the Dodgers, when he made his first appearance for the Brewers following the All-Star Game in Washington — during which his disgusting missives were unearthed — he got that standing-O. Monday night, Hader entered with two outs in the sixth inning against the visiting Nationals. Not everyone stood up this time. But again, undeniable, indisputable warmth — maybe one in four people on his or her feet.
"It's an embarrassment," Rainey said. "It's not who we are as a city."
Rainey is 37, and he has earned the right to make these assessments. He is a native Milwaukeean. He went to public high school there. He returned there after college. He is raising a family there. And for the past two years, he has served as the alderman for the city's seventh district.
The ZIP code Rainey represents, 53206, has "a higher percentage of black men incarcerated than any other in the United States," he said. Indeed, one study showed more than six in 10 black men from that part of Milwaukee will spend time in an adult correctional facility by the time they reach their mid-30s.
So for Rainey and others in Milwaukee, what Hader tweeted all those years ago isn’t about Hader all by his lonesome. It’s about how those actions fit into a city that has long struggled with race relations. This is a city in which Sterling Brown, who plays for the Milwaukee Bucks, was arrested and tased during a conversation with police over an innocuous parking violation this past winter.
Rainey and his constituents are dealing with a seemingly irreversible achievement gap in their schools. They’re dealing with a widening income gap in their workforce. Then, when Hader entered against the Dodgers, the camera panned across the crowd — mostly white — and captured smiling, cheering fans?
"We have to talk about it," Rainey said in a phone interview Tuesday. "We have to talk about how that looks to the rest of the country."
The rest of the country has already weighed in, albeit in a roundabout way. A week from Thursday, the first NFL preseason game of the summer will be played in Columbus, Ohio, between the Chicago Bears and the Baltimore Ravens. When the Nationals played the Brewers on Monday night, more than a few fans at Miller Park sported Green Bay Packers jerseys. Football season is nigh.
When Brewers fans rose to support Hader Saturday night, Rainey couldn’t help but think about how football players had been received when they expressed their views over the past year, be it on social media or during silent protests during the national anthem. Colin Kaepernick was born 30 years ago in, of all places, Milwaukee.
"The juxtaposition is blatantly obvious to the world," Rainey said. "Here you have Kaepernick, a Milwaukee native, who took the onus to say, 'I'm going to bring attention to a cause I believe in,' vilified and basically exiled from the NFL because of it. And then on the other hand, you have a young guy who unfortunately said things that were totally contrary to everything we believe in and want to be, yet he's embraced and encouraged for it.
"For me, I just want the world to know that all of us here in Milwaukee don't represent that."
But the imagery, it’s going to be hard to remove from our brains. It’s impossible to know what each person in a crowd of 26,073 is thinking. And it’s dangerous to say those who stood and cheered Hader are the same people who see football players kneeling or locking arms and call them unpatriotic, ungrateful and worse.
Still, it's worth thinking about as the Hader incident gets further behind us and the NFL season rapidly approaches. What did the fans at Miller Park say about themselves when they embraced an embattled pitcher? What will the fans at, say, Green Bay's Lambeau Field say about themselves when they react to Packers players who use their platforms to draw attention to mass incarceration, to social justice, to issues they find important?
Rainey said he is not out to get Hader or instigate a protest against the pitcher.
"I don't think there's anyone saying we hate Hader," Rainey said. "In Milwaukee, we embrace our athletes. I think at the end of the day, we have to recognize this is an opportunity for us to improve. I think if he were to open himself up to the community, to be a part of those conversations that we need to have, he can advance social justice."
Whether that happens, who knows? Right now, all we have is Josh Hader, who stained himself with his own words — then tried his best to address the situation with both fans and teammates. And we have Milwaukee fans, who stood and cheered. For what? Maybe they listened to Hader, took him as sincere, and wanted to show support. Wouldn’t it be great if football fans looked at NFL players this fall, listened to the message they had to impart, and showed support, too?