Thank you to everyone who filled out the reader survey. It gave us several insights into how we can improve the site, but mostly it served as morale-boosting encouragement that we’re doing something that people find valuable.
I do want to address one of the more common negative comments, which I would generalize as “stop demonizing me for driving a car and living in a single-family home.”
If any STB staffers actually are demonizing people for driving cars and living in detached housing, then they are stinking hypocrites. Partly because car ownership and single-family residency are far from uncommon in our ranks; but also that the entire premise of Seattle Transit Blog is that the region has done a poor job of prioritizing transit so that dense living and transit dependence are widely appealing options.
More broadly, I believe people respond to incentives and make decisions in accordance with what they value. It’s easy to criticize a giant truck for its carbon footprint, but like anyone raised Catholic I know we are all sinners here. Some of us fly all over the world for leisure, some eat more meat than is even healthy, and some of us burn a little extra gasoline. Who am I to judge which impactful choice gives you the most pleasure?
This empathy does not extend to people who seek to use regulatory power to control the choices of others. Campaigns to ensure that no one in search of compact, inexpensive housing can live in a certain neighborhood is well beyond the exercise of personal freedom. Making thousands of bus riders wait in traffic, or bicyclists risk their lives mixed with cars, just to cheaply store a car in public right-of-way is a remarkable indifference to the well-being of others.
So by all means, if it works for you please keep living in your detached house and driving your car everywhere. But please recognize that policies that discourage or prevent other choices are bad for sustainability and for freedom.