Sunday, May 11, 2008

The Right Side of Seattle

Seattle comes across, to many people, pretty liberal place. It's pretty easy to argue Washington is a Blue State because of the very high percentage of Democratic voters in Seattle and its immediate suburban area. (You see a similar pattern in many states with large urban populations that completely dwarf the demographics of the rest of the state.) But, no matter what anyone says, Seattle isn't "completely" liberal. Like any place, it has its share of conservatives - even if they are few in numbers. To give you an example, I've mentioned before the groups of people that get together on Saturday mornings in Lake Forest park, to demonstrate either in support of the troops (and to a lesser degree, the administration) or to end the war and to criticize the administration. One day, when I actually counted heads, I found the that end the war crowd outnumbered the support the troops crowd by about five to one.

Many of them, to pass the time, it seems, hang out on the Seattle Post Intelligencer's Sound Off pages, making bitter and mean-spirited comments, and complaining every time they feel that the newspaper, or it's readership is being too liberal for their tastes - which is quite often. There are several regulars, some of which are probably more accurately labeled "trolls," who spend a lot of time making nasty comments about even trivial topics. There is a lot of heat, but very little light, which is a shame. Convinced that they won't be listened to - and often seeming to put a lot of energy into ensuring just that - they rarely post anything enlightening or thoughtful - settling instead for knee-jerk Limbaugh-esque invective, being quick to point out problems and make ad-hominem attacks on other posters, but rarely offering anything by the way of actionable or verifiable information. There are also a lot of anonymous posts that exhibit many of the same characteristics, but without having set usernames attached to them.

Not to say that they are the only ones. They have their counterparts on the other side of the political divide. But with the larger community on the political left, the flamers and trolls don't generate the appearance of representing most of the group.


ben said...

Compared with Boston or San Francisco (previous cities I've lived in) this place is pretty conservative. One strange thing about Seattle are all the god heads. Most liberals in BOS or SFO are non-religious. Definitely not the case out here. I've never known so many god heads.

Aaron said...

Really? They say that Seattle has the lowest percentage of churchgoers of nearly the entire country.