Morning Word

City Council District 3 Seat Draws Two New Contenders

Former Santa Fe Archbishop Sheehan Dies at 83

D3 draws at least two candidates

Following Santa Fe City Councilor Chris Rivera’s recent announcement not to seek re-election in District 3 in the Nov. 7 election, two candidates have announced their interest in representing the city’s Southside area. Former Santa Fe and Española law enforcement officer Louis Carlos, who now works as a private investigator (and sued the city in April, alleging it is illegally withholding police records; the case is ongoing) announced his candidacy on Friday. “I am going to be critical of our government, not just the mayor, the entire body,” Carlos tells SFR. “I want to be able to have conversations and work with our elected officials and make collective decisions of what’s best for our constituents.” EarthCare Co-Director Miguel Angel Acosta also is running in the race, and spoke recently on the Relational Kaleidoscope podcast in part about the decision to run. “Electoral politics has its limitations,” he says. “But it is where a lot of the barriers and negative outcomes originate, in policy and practices established by governments.” His candidacy, he says, will be on a “platform of doing things in a more genuine way” that is more community based. Acosta tells the Santa Fe New Mexican empowering the residents of District 3 will also be a focus of his campaign.

Former Santa Fe Archbishop Sheehan dies at 83

The Archdiocese of Santa Fe over the weekend announced former Archbishop Michael Sheehan had died at the age of 83; Sheehan served as Archbishop in Santa Fe for 22 years, beginning in 1993. “He was a faithful servant of the Lord who loved this local Church and all its priests, deacons, religious and lay faithful,” Archbishop John C. Wester said in a statement about his predecessor. “May Archbishop Sheehan rest in peace and may his soul and all the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace.” While no cause of death has been revealed, according to the Albuquerque Journal, in 2018 Sheehan announced he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. As detailed by the Santa Fe New Mexican, Sheehan’s tenure in Santa Fe followed the departure of the late Archbishop Robert Sanchez, who resigned in disgrace amid reports that he had violated his celibacy vows by having sex with women, and during the onset of reckoning regarding the church’s abuse of children. “The Holy Father wanted me to come to help a church in difficulty,” Sheehan told The New Mexican in an April 2015 interview. “I had to remove some priests who had done terrible things, apologize to people and seek more vocations to the priesthood,” but “I was convinced God was going to bring us out of it.”

Customer finds cocaine in Sonic hotdog

Española Police late last week issued an arrest warrant for 54-year-old David Salazar on charges of possession of a controlled substance—cocaine, in this instance. The charge followed a call from Sonic Drive In on Riverside Avenue in Española after a woman bit into her hot dog and “felt what she described as a small plastic bag in her mouth.” When she spit it out, she “observed it contained what appeared to be a white powdery substance.” The substance presumptively later tested positive for cocaine. In the arrest affidavit, Detective Maxim Alaniz says he then reviewed video surveillance of the incidence in which he observed Salazar, the Sonic’s cook, “conduct what appeared to be a hand-to-hand transaction with another female employee while in the kitchen area. Mr. Salazar then proceeded to make the food, which was delivered to [the customer]. While making the food, Mr. Salazar’s body language suddenly changes and he stops cooking and appears to be frantically searching the area as if he lost something. Mr. Salazar’s sudden change in behavior suggest he possibly lost the small baggie which was later found in [the customer’s] hotdog.” The detective writes that he subsequently spoke with Salazar, who admitted the baggie was his and said he had purchased the cocaine “from someone identified as Elaine while outside in the parking lot.”

State Rep. Trujillo stepping down

State Rep. Christine Trujillo, D-Albuquerque, announced on Saturday she will be resigning her seat, effective July 1. Trujillo serves on both the House Appropriations & Finance and Education committees. During the most recent legislative session, she worked with a group of high school students to pass House Bill 134, which provides free menstrual hygiene products in schools. She also co-sponsored Senate Bill 397, which will expand school-based health centers. The Bernalillo County Commission will appoint a new House member to finish Trujillo’s term; a new representative will be elected in the November 2024 election. “It’s been the honor of my lifetime to represent our community in the Roundhouse for the last decade,” Trujillo said in a statement. “I hope I have made you proud by fighting for our public schools and working to make life easier for New Mexico families. I look forward to continuing to serve our community in my next chapter. " In a statement yesterday, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham described Trujillo’s 10 years in the House as “a continuation of her dedication to her community and students across our state,” and said Trujillo’s work “during the most recent legislative sessions shows her tenacity to make New Mexico better and a singular focus on making life easier for schools and families. Rep. Trujillo’s eagerness to make meaningful change will be missed in the next session.” Trujillo tells the Albuquerque Journal her age (69) and health factored into her decision to resign.

Listen up

ICYMI, the most recent edition of the Santa Fe Reporter includes a stand-alone guide to Lensic 360′s Summer Scene movie and music season—more than 50 free events in the offing, including the Plaza bandstand series, which begins Thursday, June 8 with Shakey Graves. Signing up for the Lensic 360′s newsletter will keep you in the loop on all the shows coming this way and, as a bonus, the most recent edition includes a mini playlist (at the bottom) provided by Lensic Executive Director Joel Aalberts with a few tunes he currently has on repeat if you’re looking for music to kick off the week.

Wild at heart

We wish National Geographic magazine allowed us to “gift” links to subscriber-only features (which is how we often share stories here in Morning Word), but, alas you’ll have to pick up a copy of NatGeo’s June magazine (or subscribe) to read its feature story on the Gila Wilderness. Writer Peter Gwin explores whether the country’s first wilderness area remains wild at heart, and delves into the origin story of the Gila’s wildness designation, along with the area’s cultural and ecological histories, plus the government’s current interventions with its wild inhabitants (such as wolves). And it’s a NatGeo story, so it includes stunning photographs of New Mexico’s landscape from photographer Katie Orlinsky. Gwin and Orlinsky’s accompanying story from mid-May—which we mentioned previously—lays out the best ways to visit the Gila. Last year, the anthology First and Wildest: The Gila Wilderness at 100examined the Gila’s impact and ongoing importance from a variety of perspectives. Contributor Leeanna Torres reflects on the book in a recent blog post for WildEarth Guardians, and writes of taking her son to the Gila River last summer for his first visit: “I want this river, and the whole of the Gila, to become seeped into my boy’s remembrance,” Torres writes, “the tapping of its swift-water-tune to seep into his soul as much as it’s in mine.” Lastly, New Mexico also shows up in a non-premium NatGeo story on the 10 best national parks to avoid summer crowds, of which Carlsbad Caverns National Park is one when it comes to the best wildlife viewing. After all: “August and September bring the best bat watching when the year’s babies take to the skies with their parents.”

Chile tales

Syndicated columnist/registered dietician Barbara Intermill wrote recently of her trip to New Mexico for a reunion with some of her “rodeo buddies” from New Mexico State University. Intermill lived in the Hatch Valley as a child and devotes some of the column to explaining the red/green/Christmas tradition for chile eaters, before discussing New Mexico’s other state vegetable: the pinto bean. “There’s an amazing balance of nutrients between the two foods,” Intermill writes, as cooked pinto beans “are a rich source of protein” and also provide “bone-building calcium, blood-fortifying iron and immune-protecting zinc.” As for red and green chiles, they are both “a great source of vitamin C,” which “promotes strong bones and immune systems.” Plus, they apparently have lutein and zeaxanthin, “plant-based chemicals…well known for their role in preserving eyesight.” In a follow-up column, Intermill discloses the extensive feedback she received from readers on her New Mexico column, such as one who berated her for spelling chile incorrectly (she did not), writing: “It’s embarrassing that you are from New Mexico, and are a dietitian and nutritionist (and apparently a columnist) and yet you do not know the difference between Chile (which is a country in South America) and chili (which is a spicy food, or a type of pepper).” Intermill patiently explains why chile is not incorrect spelling in this context and provides another reader with an enchilada recipe.

Rain or shine

Could be a rainy start to the week, with the National Weather Service forecasting a 50% chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after noon. It will otherwise be mostly sunny, with a high temperature near 70 degrees; southeast wind 5 to 15 mph; and a slightly decreased possibility for more showers and thunderstorms tonight, mainly before 3 am.

Thanks for reading! The Word can’t decide which items from Harper’s Magazine’s weekly review she likes best: the one about a study showing one in eight men bring condoms to funerals; or the one where the state of Georgia reminded people to wear clothes in their driver’s license photos.

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