Why Vashon Island Is Not the Most Liberal Place in the US


Is someone here shouting down a political speech again? It's awesome that white people can't be liberal. Guess I'll have to vote for trump.

What a load of provincial crap from an increasingly white and affluent Seattle.
If you think middle-class white people are inherently not-liberal, clearly you've never hung out with poor white people. Especially the kind that live in multicultural, diverse cities (unlike lily-white Seattle).
Vashon has a very strange political mix. I remember being on the island one summer and Tom Stewart was hosting the Washington State GOP picnic on his massive Misty Isle Farms ranch (with heli-pad!). Across the street, at the Paradise Ridge Park, there was a huge Earth Day celebration. German luxury sedans lined one side of the road, VW buses the other. Vashon has lots of rich people with waterfront mansions and lots of hippies living in the woods.
What does political ideology have to do with skin color? Or, what does skin color have to do with political ideology?
Lower ferry fares (even MORE subsidy) and you'll get more POC.
By this standard, a pre civil war Alabama plantation counts as more liberal.
"To be found nowhere this island of 10,000 people on the list?"

Could you proofread your stuff, please?
Damn Mudede, you really need to learn how to look beyond your own prejudices and labels you assign to people you know nothing about. Do you ever see beyond your own nose?

Maybe you should move to a diverse city.

Your crushing (and ironic) provincialism is showing again.
The real problem with this article is that Mudede offers no reason for "Why?"

I should've explain more.

Unless Mudede is going to say something like black people are not allowed to buy property on Vashon, or black people can't buy ferry tickets, the real question is Why do black people (or POC in general) prefer not to live on Vashon?"

It's not about white people but POC.

The answer could be simple: money.

So Mudede might have very well also asked "Why don't POC live on Magnolia?" and the answer these days is obvious: money.
What is it about you Mr. Mudede? It seems that you always judge people on the basis of where they live.
@2: charles just gave you stats that show Seattle is not "lily-white". in fact South Seattle has the most diverse zip code in Merica. they just happen to be asian, latino, and african as well as african-american.

by diversity you mean "more black people", like a midwest or east coast city. just say it.
The Oregon Territories (Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, parts of Wyoming and Montana) were founded on racism and racial exclusion.


@13: that most diverse statistic is as equally valid and useful as the most liberal statistic applied to vashon. Which is to say, not at all.

I lived in the south and in LA before heading here. Seattle is shockingly segregated, something I've not seen in other places. It's like a backwards Baltimore with exclusively white neighborhoods instead of black ones.

I know it fits the provincial mantra well, but it's nonsense. And if POC want to buy a house on lake Washington or on vashon, I'm sure someone will sell them one.

Whites exclusively benefit from raising home values? Tell that to minority homeowners in the central district. Sure, renters everywhere are hosed, but that has nothing to do with race and more to do with peraonal priorities and basic economic understanding. If you want to stay somewhere forever, don't rent and expect that to happen.
@14.....Completely false and untrue; the Oregon Territories were part of the post civil war western expansion. People did not settle there just to get away from black people.
Proving once again that Liberal is just another word for Landed Gentry

"The most liberal community" is not equivalent to "the perfect community."

Vashon is Vashon. I might complain about some things, but I'm not going to bitch about their liberalism. I much prefer that to them giving their money to the Family Research Council and voting for Mike Huckabee.
Aren't there plenty of tangible real problems of racism to point to without these strange demographic extrapolations that have no logical sense?
Proving once again that John Bailo is just another word for Stupidest Mother Fucker On The Planet.
@15: no one would sell a POC a house on lake washington? bullshit. money talks loudest in seattle. it's segregated by class more than race.
@11 said it best.
@11, you missed my point. how? well, no one calls magnolia the most liberal place in the US.
13/Max: @2: charles just gave you stats that show Seattle is not "lily-white". in fact South Seattle has the most diverse zip code in Merica. they just happen to be asian, latino, and african as well as african-american.

Seattle is predominantly white and probably "lily-white" compared to many other large cities in the U.S. But that's Seattle overall. As you correctly pointed out, that is not the case in South Seattle (or Southeast Seattle.) I've been living there (in upper Rainier Beach, aka "Rainier View") since 1990 and, as a white guy, am in the minority pretty much anywhere I go in the neighborhood. So, while I know that Seattle is, overall, predominantly white, that's not my day-to-day experience living here.

I took my out of town friends to vashon one time because they were interested in its reputation for liberalism and natural beauty. unfortunately, within about 30 minutes we had been tracked down by a wine-slogging group of middle-aged minivan moms on a scavenger hunt. it was weird when they tried to explain around a "picture with a black person" being on their list. haven't been back since.
@23: Well, Magnolia may be to the right of Vashon but its to the left of Bellevue. So what? Seattle is more liberal than Dallas.

So, can you please try again and answer @11?
@25: Well, did said black person in the picture have the next clue?

Hey, I think it would be a blast to go on a savager hunt with an assortment of middle-aged wine slogging moms in a minivan, with a designated driver that is.
Whites exclusively benefit from raising home values? Tell that to Bruce and Joanne Harrell, who live in Seward Park in a 6000+ SF house with a killer view of Lake WA and affluent, white neighbors.
Fewer POC on Vashon in proportion to Seattle overall, much less rest of USA.

Why? Not known.
Presumably mostly less money.

Are there any other theories?
And I mean theories why POC don't move there.
Life is not all about whites.
POC have free will and many -- if they wanted to and could afford it -- move to Vashon.
It's not all about whites.

The fact that whites like Vashon doesn't preclude POC there. In fact Asians have long history on Vashon as farmers, though may not have returned after WW 2.

So you raise a good question, Charles, but your answer doesn't work.
A libetar-off! This is the dumbest reach I have read on the stranger.

I didn't know one could write a Seattle article that conveys both a sense of elitism and feelings of inadequacy and defensiveness.....all at once!

Charles - do you want to move to vashon? It's cheaper than most all of Seattle. What's stopping you?
Unfortunate typo in @27.
@32, the one where you completely missed the point?

@25, was the photo a pretext for trying to touch your hair?
60k as a median income is far from middle class in this state in reality. North Bend, the most rural, purple, lower class burg (an overglorified skiing and truck stop town really) on I-90 west of the pass has a median income of 93k. 60k was below the median income there back in 2000. Times have changed a little.

When you stop looking at a group as "privileged middle class white elites" and see the truth of the matter (that the individuals in question have more in common with loggers from Forks than urbanites from Seattle), the story takes a very different turn. Vashon liberalism is typical old school Western Washington liberalism. It is incredibly racist, and always has been. It just did a better job of sweeping it under the rug 10-15 years ago. Remember when The Stranger had that expose on the number of black men killed by police with guns planted on them? That's typical Western Washington liberalism. What makes you think that ever changed, especially outside Seattle?
What is source? "...typical old school Western Washington liberalism. It is incredibly racist, and always has been."
I bet actual leftists are annoyed that Bernie Sanders is the furthest left in this study. Then again, I don't conflate 'leftist' and 'liberal', unless I'm being lazy.
let's bring race into a topic that has nothing to do with race!

it's about income inequality. there is income inequality at vashon island. yes, a greater percentage of black people are poor, but you're missing the message.

vashon island has the largest % of champagne liberals.
@35, while there are numerous studies on the subtle yet pervasive style of racism on the West Coast of the US, I'll start with the example I gave in my post. The Stranger did an expose at one point back in the 1990s that statistically proved SPD was planting guns on African American men after killing them (without going into the specific math, of course).

All you have to do is go over to Black Diamond to start seeing pickup trucks with Confederate flag stickers on them. Most of The West is still incredibly redneck, and that includes good ole boy style racism, where the line "I've got nothing against black folk, I just don't want to live near them." is considered an enlightened point of view.

Get out of Seattle. Go visit Oakville, Shelton, or anything west of Forks.
@37, Vashon has never had the highest number of champagne liberals. Not by a longshot. It is maybe the third in line for that title in local Islands alone, behind Mercer and Bainbridge.

Besides, look at the fact that Vashon's median income has been practically flat for the last 20 years, moving from 53kish to 60kish. In that same period, other suburban/rural white enclaves have seen an over 25% increase in their median income. Vashon's economy is stagnant and depressed, more like a slightly upscale Aberdeen with less meth and heroin than an enclave of zinfandel sipping former yuppies.
You think Black Diamond and Darrington and Forks is liberal? Under what definition?

Wallingford is the gold standard for liberal and you work down from there.
"....are liberal?"
@25- I call bullshit. None of that happened. Nice try, though.
Certainly, white liberal hotspots are where one is mostly likely to find instances of "lazy liberalism" oozing through the streets. Semi-viral social media posts and the occasional "climate gathering" are about as active as these people get. White liberals in most respects just aren't sufficiently uncomfortable to be true progressives. As much as Trump or Cruz might get on their nerves, they're still pretty content with the status quo. I say this as a North European mutt who has spent the past 20 years on Bainbridge Island and in Bellingham, both of which are overrun with white liberals.
@42: Can you suggest any tips for for making white liberals sufficiently uncomfortable so they can be true progressives?
Oopsie - I meant to refer to 43.
Too many people from Oberlin College reading SLOG?
I noticed that you exclude the population of Latinos on Vashon, yet you include them in the statistics for the Texas city. According to your statistics, there is 4.38% of the population is unaccounted for. Let's say they're Latino. The Latino population at the local elementary school is 5.4% and 15% Free or Reduced lunch. The growing rate of Latinos on the island represents a changing, but still liberal voting demographic. You also fail to mention that it costs $3380 for a single person to commute to the city, which 85% of people do. Many of the on island jobs are taken by people who commute from the Kitsap peninsula. Your article makes it clear that you've never been to Vashon, nor to America's Beef Capitol. Defining people's political identities based solely on race adds to this problem. In this country, liberalism is defined by who you vote for, not your skin color or income bracket.
@40, yes, I do call Forks liberal, as defined by a national standard. The entire state, even Eastern Washington, is liberal by such a definition. If you think Oakville is conservative, get off the West Coast. Your skewed perspective is showing.
@47: I didn't know what you were referring to until I spotted this on Real Clear Politics: Oberlin College Students: Cafeteria food is racist.
Siss-boom-bah for Oberlin!
Vashon: a painfully white community with secret disdain for the poor and poc. Limousine liberals with too much money to spend on stupid shit while at the same time nickel and diming their poor and working class. Goddamn 3rd way democrats. Rich bastards