As basic human rights go, the right to take shelter under an

As basic human rights go, the right to take shelter under an umbrella is about as basic as it gets, especially in drizzly Seattle. It’s also a right that, at least for the Occupy Seattle protestors in Westlake Park, seems to have been revoked, thanks to Mayor Mike McGinn.This evening, Seattle police notified the 70 or so hearty souls sleeping downtown that if they weren’t actually holding their umbrellas then they couldn’t lay or sit underneath them.Sound weird? It is! But it’s also the law.Because to the city, an unattended umbrella is technically a “structure.” And structures, like the tents that were taken down earlier in the week, aren’t allowed in city parks.Of course, McGinn has the power to change those rules, temporarily lift them, or laugh and say “What a stupid rule.” But seeing as how he’d prefer the protestors move to the plaza outside of City Hall–where he’s offered them the right to set up tents (warm, dry tents) and the use of two Port-a-Potties–it’s in his best interest to make life miserable enough so that any alternative looks better.Which leaves the Occupy Seattle protestors where exactly?Well, they’re not completely screwed. If they want to stay dry, they’re still allowed to sleep under a tarp, so long as it’s not tied up to anything (thereby making it a structure).And if things get really bleak, they can always warm themselves with the knowledge that the protest has only been going on for a few days, and if today’s illegal umbrellas are any indication, things are only going to get more absurd.Follow The Daily Weekly on Facebook and Twitter.

Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing

More in News & Comment

This screenshot from Auburn Police Department bodycam footage shows an officer about to fire his weapon and kill dog on May 13, 2022.
Auburn police shoot dog, and owner claims it wasn’t justified

See videos of attack as well as bodycam footage of officer firing at dog.

File photo.
King County Council approves creation of Cannabis Safety Taskforce amid rash of dispensary robberies

The multi-agency task force will cooperate to find ways to improve safety in the cash-only industry.

Screenshot from ORCA website
New ORCA system launches for regional transit across the Puget Sound

Overhaul includes new website, mobile application and digital business account manager.

Judged by XII: A King County Local Dive podcast. The hands shown here belong to Auburn Police Officer Jeffrey Nelson, who has been charged with homicide in the 2019 death of Jesse Sarey.
JUDGED BY XII (Episode 4): Foster mom wants accountability in Auburn cop’s upcoming murder trial

Special podcast series explores Auburn Police Officer Jeffrey Nelson’s role in the death of Jesse Sarey.

Diane Renee Erdmann and Bernard Ross Hansen. Photos courtesy of FBI
FBI arrests Auburn couple after 11-day manhunt

The couple was previously convicted for fraud and skipped sentencing on April 29.

Screenshot from Barnes and Noble website
Cover art of books that KSD Librarian Gavin Downing says have been under fire: “Jack of Hearts (and Other Parts),” by Lev A.C. Rosen, “If I Was Your Girl,” by Meredith Russo, and “All Boys Aren’t Blue,” by George Matthew Johnson.
Kent middle school librarian wins intellectual freedom award

Gavin Downing refused to keep ‘silence in the library’ amid attempted book banning and censorship.

Kent elementary school teacher accused of using racist language toward student

River Ridge Elementary instructor placed on administrative leave by Kent School District.

FILE PHOTO: King County Sheriff’s Office deputies.
Dozens of King County Sheriff’s Office employees left jobs instead of getting vaccinated

This added on to the existing number of vacancies in the department.

Joann and Allan Thomas are flanked in court by their attorneys Terrence Kellogg (fourth from the right) and John Henry Browne (far right) on May 10, 2022. Judge Richard Jones is presiding over the case. Sketch by Seattle-based artist Lois Silver
At drainage district corruption trial, it’s a tale of dueling conspiracies

Allan and Joann Thomas are in trial in Seattle on fraud charges.

Most Read