I read your editorial [“Hello, I love you” Mid-May 2016] with interest.   You asked for feedback;  I found it rambling and too long. I also was taken aback by your comment about "affordable" housing in North Seattle!  Really!  Maybe with your income; but you should know that most of us (I have lived in a studio rental for many years), who are low income or seniors, like me, are pretty much getting priced out of Seattle.  Right now I pay about 95 percent of my social sec. income for rent.  The metaphor you used about not having to "sell a kidney" seemed odd and out of place here in Seattle — never heard it before, and I somehow felt offended. As many must consider extreme measures just to stay afloat I recommend more sensitivity. 

In regard to the reader letter about Mother's Day: Thank you for this comment about animals being taken away from their mothers at birth and slaughtered for our benefit and lifestyles.  I, too, find this reprehensible and it is one of the reasons I am vegetarian.  It is interesting that the mother who allowed her child to climb into the gorilla pit in Ohio last week, due to her lack of responsibility in always keeping at least one eye on a toddler, and being in a public place alone with too many kids, has been held in high esteem, while, at the same time there has been very little if any empathy shown toward the caged animal, who should not have been there in the first place!

Carol Meyer, Ravenna
 
Carol,

Thank you for your feedback and for sticking it out through my first column. I know, I am torturous — my mother tells me as much every time I visit.

In regard to affordable housing, your observation about the pattern of low-income residents being priced out of the city, regardless of neighborhood, is absolutely correct. However, the comments you refer to were intended to convey the relativism of the situation — and the degree to which rents have increased has indeed differed wildly from neighborhood to neighborhood. One year ago, KUOW analyzed the pace of rent increases by neighborhood and found North Seattle had the cheapest rents of the city at $1,020 per month for a one-bedroom in 2014. For the record, that amount still earns a “yikes” from me.

Former Jungle homeless camp resident Donald Morehead commented in June that he believed our city’s sense of “affordable” had skewed high in relation to median income, making it so that rents out of reach for a good chunk of the population are considered “affordable." He argued that the word had become meaningless and obscured the obstacles to true affordability. 

The type of housing the city truly needs to promote he said, was low-income housing. Whether such a step will be possible under HALA or some other program remains to be seen.

- Daniel