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Remembering Japanese Internment In The Mountain West

Feb 21, 2018
Courtesy of Mitch Homma, the Homma & Wada Family Collection

In the spring of 1942, official posters went up across the West Coast and Arizona. All people of Japanese ancestry had one week to report to assembly centers. Ultimately, more than 100,000 Japanese-Americans were forcibly imprisoned in internment camps, including nearly 8,000 in the Topaz Camp near Delta, Utah. This week is when we remember those camps and the people who lived in them.

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House Speaker Greg Hughes is throwing his weight behind a bill to abolish the death penalty in Utah. He’ll be working over the coming weeks to sway his GOP colleagues.

Nicole Nixon / KUER

Suicide is now the leading cause of death for Utahns aged 10 to 17. After learning that 44 teenagers in Utah died by suicide last year, Gov. Gary Herbert formed a special task force last month.

Austen Diamond / KUER

The Utah Legislature is losing one of the most vocal and outspoken members of its minority caucus. Democratic Sen. Jim Dabakis announced Tuesday he won’t seek re-election at the end of his term this year.

Kelsie Moore / KUER

President Trump has endorsed Mitt Romney for Utah’s open Senate seat. Trump tweeted his support Monday night and called Romney a “worthy successor” to outgoing Sen. Orrin Hatch.

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In the Hive Mind, listeners ask questions about different topics and KUER reporters try to answer them. This week you asked-how much affordable housing is acceptable and who decides it?

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Utah lawmakers seem ready to waive the fee for inspecting EnergySolutions radioactive landfill. A bill to do that — at the top of the list of legislation that Senators could vote on this week — would have taxpayers covering inspection fees for one of the state’s most generous campaign donors, EnergySolutions.

Austen Diamond / KUER

A bill coming up for debate would make Utah the first state in the nation to allow residents to buy prescription drugs from Canada for less than they cost in the U.S. It’s getting pushback from pharmaceutical companies.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

An ex-wife of former White House staff secretary Rob Porter says she has received a letter of apology from Sen. Orrin Hatch, the Utah Republican who defended his former aide from ``a vile attack'' after two ex-wives accused Porter of domestic abuse.

Nicole Nixon / KUER

Many Utahns were excited when Mitt Romney finally made his candidacy for the seat currently held by retiring Sen. Orrin Hatch official. Ogden resident Paul Henstrom, who voted for Romney for president in 2012, hopes he can be a bridge in a deeply divided Congress. 

Black Panther pounced on the weekend box office, breaking cultural barriers and earning the highest debut ever for a February film, with an estimated three-day domestic gross of $192 million, said Disney, Marvel's parent company.

The opening was the fifth highest-earning of any film, according to Disney. The only other movies that have brought in more are Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Jurassic World and The Avengers, according to The Associated Press.

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The president of Utah State University, Noelle Cockett, held an early morning meeting with students in the music department on Friday. She acknowledged allegations of sexual assault that surfaced online this week involving music faculty and promised an investigation is underway.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Drones were brought into Gettysburg. A pregnant elk was poached in Zion National Park. And in Yellowstone, commercial snowmobile tour guides encouraged other riders to pass the legal boundary and get up close to the geyser, Old Faithful.

Kelsie Moore / KUER

Mitt Romney launched his political comeback on Friday, announcing a widely anticipated run for Utah's Senate seat. 

Pool Photo / Salt Lake Tribune

Gov. Gary Herbert said Thursday he’s working with Utah lawmakers on a bill that would ban abortions of a fetus diagnosed with Down syndrome. Legislative attorneys have flagged the bill, saying if it passes, it would likely face a legal challenge.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Utah lawmakers aren’t poised to make any sweeping changes to gun laws in the wake of another fatal school shooting in the U.S.

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President Trump’s former staff secretary Rob Porter has been all over the news since he resigned from the White House last week. Porter, a Mormon, left his position after his two ex-wives accused him of being physically abusive. It has since been revealed that both of these women confided in their Mormon bishops about the abuse and were encouraged to remain in their relationships.

Courtesy: Elizabeth Hansen

High-school students have been pushing Utah lawmakers for climate action in Utah for more than a year. And, on Thursday, a legislative panel voted to advance a climate-change resolution they helped to draft.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Utah and Wyoming are getting tough on states that they argue are interfering with coal mining economies. Both states just introduced legislation that would make it easier to legally challenge California and Washington State for their policies on coal exports from the mountain west. 

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Utah is one step closer to sending a new statue to Washington, D.C., to display at the U.S. Capitol. The Utah House on Wednesday agreed to send a statue of Martha Hughes Cannon, the nation’s first female state senator.

Utah State House of Representatives

A new lawmaker joined the Utah House of Representatives Wednesday, St. George attorney Travis Seegmiller.

Judy Fahys/KUER News

It sounded sometimes like Rep. Ray Ward, R-Bountiful, was teaching a Climate Change 101 workshop on Tuesday. He asked members of the House Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Committee to focus on a few trends.

Kelsie Moore / KUER

Mitt Romney is postponing a highly anticipated announcement for U.S. Senate after 17 people were killed in a school shooting in South Florida

Judy Fahys/KUER News

An unlikely coalition came together behind air-quality legislation Tuesday, as some of Utah's petroleum industry joined environmental and health advocates in helping advance two bills.

le.utah.edu/State of Utah

There’s pushback on Utah’s Capitol hill against tough-on-crime bills Democrats have sponsored this year. Utah Senator Karen Mayne is sponsoring two of those bills. She has a soft spot for first responders.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Utah has historically had one of the largest gender wage gaps in the country, but a bill that would’ve researched wage disparities among state employees faced a chilly reception from male lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

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A House bill to allow the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food to grow cannabis for medical and research purposes passed by the narrowest of margins Tuesday.

Austen Diamond / KUER

Local funding for school districts is based on property taxes, but Sen. Lincoln Fillmore, R-South Jordan, worries that system is outdated.

Austen Diamond / KUER

For the first time the federal government has allowed states to develop work requirements for people on Medicaid, the low-income government health insurance program. It’s a big change, requiring people to work in exchange for health care. Utah is one of 10 states that applied to do it. At least one bill in the legislature is sketching out what work requirements could look like.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Utah could be headed to battle against California over coal.

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