Posted on May 2, 2011

Census Report on Seattle’s Whiteness Really Hit a Nerve

Danny Westneat, Seattle Times, April 30, 2011


It [a census number index called the “diversity index.”] calculates the probability that two people in a given area would have different racial or ethnic backgrounds. A score of 0 indicates complete homogeneity. A score of 100 means complete diversity–that the population is mixed among the census’ racial and ethnic categories, which include white, black, Asian, Hispanic, mixed race and “other.”

The area of Beaulieu’s office, from Judkins Park on the south past Pratt Park on the north, has an extremely high diversity index rating of 91. Living there are 451 blacks, 362 whites, 107 Asians, 171 who identify as mixed race, 45 Native Americans, 279 “other” race and 612 Hispanics (who can be of any race).

If diversity means “variety,” here’s where it is. Right smack in the middle of one of the least diverse cities around.

What drew me there is that a lot of people were hacked off by the story last weekend that said Seattle is so white. Some objected that the image didn’t match their own experiences. Others seemed defensive, saying: So what if we’re a white city? Nobody’s redlining, like back in the old days.


Everything in the story was true. Seattle really is the fifth whitest big city in America, and, judged by the diversity index, the eighth-least diverse.

But it’s also true that Seattle is the least white, as well as the most racially diverse, that it has ever been. Today it’s 66 percent white. In 1960, by contrast, Seattle was 92 percent white. In 1980, 80 percent white.

There’s also widespread misunderstanding, it seems to me, about the word “diversity.” It doesn’t always mean “more minorities.” Seattle’s Central Area has been flooded with whites moving into the inner city. But this gentrification isn’t simple to categorize, because it has made many of those neighborhoods more racially diverse, not less.

The story of Seattle is likewise complex. The city houses the most racially jumbled neighborhood in the state–South Park, with a diversity index of 93, as near to total variety as any neighborhood is likely to get. By comparison, the city’s least diverse spot is centered on the Madison Park gated community of Broadmoor (the census says Broadmoor, with a diversity rating of 10, has 710 whites, 19 Asians, no blacks and no Native Americans).

Despite extremes like that, Seattle is–again according to the census–one of the least racially divided big cities in America.

That’s based on another measure, called dissimilarity, that looks at how different races are distributed across census tracts. Seattle doesn’t rank in the top 50 among big cities for segregation (Milwaukee, New York, Chicago, Detroit and Cleveland are the top five most racially segregated).

How can we be white and not very diverse, have some of the most diverse neighborhoods and be among the most integrated–all at the same time?


To me the mixed messages add up to a pretty fair portrayal of our city: predominantly white but ever less so, with pockets of extraordinary variety, all somehow still muddled around without concentrated ethnic neighborhoods.


31 responses to “Census Report on Seattle’s Whiteness Really Hit a Nerve”

  1. anon says:

    It doesn’t always mean more minorities??

    umm, no, diversity always means more minorities. Jesus christ, Seattle is one of the most insanely left wing cities in the country, it’s nice to know they’re all hypocrites too, preaching diversity to the rest of the country but not practicing it.

  2. Question Diversity says:

    There’s also widespread misunderstanding, it seems to me, about the word “diversity.” It doesn’t always mean “more minorities.”

    He is correct. What it usually means is “fewer whites.”

  3. John Engelman says:

    1 — anon wrote at 5:28 PM on May 2:

    Seattle is one of the most insanely left wing cities in the country, it’s nice to know they’re all hypocrites too, preaching diversity to the rest of the country but not practicing it.


    If one has contact with few blacks it is easy to romanticize them. This is particularly true now when television programs and Hollywood movies present positive images of blacks.

    Many white liberals think most blacks are like Sidney Poitier, until a black criminal points a gun at one of them. When that happens it feels like every black man all the way back to Africa is on the other side of that gun.

  4. alexander says:

    “Census Report on Seattle’s Whiteness Really Hit a Nerve”

    Just more evidence of the degeneration of the American Empire.

    To hurry along multicluturalism is to hurry along death and destruction.

  5. on the lam from the Thought Police says:

    Would someone please tell me what the advantage is in having a large black population.

  6. Wayne Engle says:

    It’s “hip to be diverse”? Tell that to yourself when you’re being mugged, or raped, on a dark street late at night by a segment of that “diversity.” See how “hip” you feel when you realize one day that there are areas of your city where you don’t feel safe traveling at night — maybe at ANY time of the day.

    Maybe the White people of Seattle don’t realize what a good thing they had. “Too many” White people equals less crime, better schools, safer streets. Maybe “boring” beats getting mugged, or raped, or murdered — ya think?

    Mr. Westneat mentions not one word about how the “darkening of Seattle” might have changed its crime rate — which means the rate almost certainly went up because of it. “Extraordinary variety?” Just like a garden full of beautiful flowers, planted so they’re all mixed up together, right, Mr. Westneat? Methinks you’ve never lived in a truly “diverse” city, or you wouldn’t be waxing so enthusiastic about it.

  7. sbuffalonative says:

    There’s a writer for who lives in Washington. He hates republicans (with a small r) passionately. When he writes about republicans, he often includes a photo of a lynching. He denounces republicans as racists and champions black equality. He appears to be well-off but despises wealthy people.

    I looked up his community and found that it’s 85% white, 8% Asian, 4% Hispanic, and 1.5% blacks.

    The largest minority he deals with is 8% Asians, a largely respectful minority.

    As always, people who have little experience with diversity and the means to avoid diversity are it’s greatest fans.

  8. Anonymous says:

    It will never get better until we give a counter example of what _no profiling_ ‘because we’re white and proud’ and _culturally advanced_, ‘because we spend on our own’ can be like.

    Sans the commentary.

    Note that nothing an idealogue says about racial diversity can ever make sense in and of itself. It always has to be set in a context of progress away from whiteness and/or a sense of guilt for remaining so.

    It has been decades since we have heard of cultural progress as a function of high technology, scientific endeavor or studied accomplishments in the arts. Everything is agenda driven.

    And that is because, to an agendist the only context that counts is motion towards annihilation. It certainly has nothing to do with the ethnies they have beset us with.

    Look at the Detroit Philharmonic. Indeed look at -any- classical, white, music. We are destroyed because we honestly seem to think that others will become like us. They won’t.


    We can only choose to be ourselves.

    And that is increasingly an ecological as well as economic question. Because, in a world where 90% of the population growth comes from 80% of the (third) world population, WE are not the ones sucking the life out of Western Culture and all the resources they take means less for us.

  9. SNAviatrix says:

    “By comparison, the city’s least diverse spot is centered on the Madison Park gated community of Broadmoor”

    Rich white liberals (and a few rich Asian liberals) want to live in a gated community away from the black and brown hordes? Who could have seen that one coming? Now if those liberal hypocrites would just let us conservative white middle-class types have the same rights, we’d be set.

    I can only imagine the number of Priuses with “Obama ’08” stickers on one side of the rear bumper and that stupid “Coexist” sticker on the other in that gated community. I may buy a hybrid someday, but I will NEVER buy a Pious…er, Prius.

  10. Ann Onymous says:

    So if the South Park neighborhood of Seattle is ’93 percent diverse’ then ‘diverse’ does mean non-white. What they mean is that South Park is 93 percent hispanic, or seemed to be a few years ago when I was there. How is that ‘diverse’?

    Actually I question the statistics for Seattle. Are they counting all the suburbs, or just the city proper? My impression of Seattle is that it is not nearly as white or nondiverse as the news articles say, especially in the center of the city. Something is off about these estimates.

  11. SNAviatrix says:

    Regarding this “diversity index”, a neighborhood in inner-city Detroit would have a score very close to 0 because everyone there is black. A neighborhood in East L.A. would have a similar score because everyone there is brown. But no one ever calls for more “diversity” for those neighborhoods. No one ever treats those neighborhoods as some sort of “problem” that needs “fixing.”

    Only when white men and women build a community for themselves and their white children do the accusations of “racism” and the cries for “diversity” go out. Only white people are called racist Nazis and accused of hate crimes simply for living around people who look like them.

  12. NAVY says:

    Washington is a white state both racially and ideologically.

    The problem regarding the census is not the census itself.

    Whites in Washington are insecure of themselves and want to produce more in all aspects of life beyond what they have given.

    Whites in Seattle are insecure that their white traits, a particular aspect of their roots as Washingtonians, is exposed in the face of their own collectivism.

    Non-whites inherently believe that whites should be producing more for them since Socialism has already endowed them with the highest level of fairness.

    But the fact of the matter is that Socialism in Seattle is running its course.

    In order to produce the social, political, and technological change whites in Seattle and Washington state are striving for, whites must adopt contrarianism focused on the Constitution.

  13. Stever says:

    So, everywhere has to be diverse. That doesn’t sound very diverse! Why is this seeming paradox tolerated? Because, as we all know, anywhere you have a White majority, Hitler and the Gas Chambers are right around the corner.

  14. Anonymous says:

    66 percent white is the danger point. get out while you can.

  15. Blue Willow says:

    Maybe a lot of the diversity in Seattle comes from Asians rather than blacks or Hispanics. It is mainly blacks and Hispanics that tend to form an underclass and move into ghettos. Asians are more likely to live in the same neighbourhoods as whites.

  16. Roger Lee says:

    The article states that Hispanics can be of any race. In my book, “The Myth Of The White Hispanic” I point out that white Hispanics are extremely rare.

    For example, many Mexicans are all puffed up with pride at supposedly having “pure” Spanish blood, but that does not exist to any degree. Spain was occupied by Muslim Moors for seven hundred years, more than the time that Spain controlled Mexico. Look at the extensive mixing in Mexico. Almost all Mexicans have some Indian blood. Given the propensity of Muslim men to sexually violate “infidel” women, I imagine that the mixing in Spain is just as extensive. Have you been to Spain, or Sicily for that matter?

    You see many people who are very obviously not white, like Penelope Cruz and Antonio Banderas, mixed with Arab blood.

    So, when you see Hispanic, you can be pretty sure that the person could not pass for a German or an Englishman.

  17. McGilicuddy says:

    “How can we be white and not very diverse, have some of the most diverse neighborhoods and be among the most integrated—all at the same time?”

    It’s not very difficult to understand, sir. You have a few very diverse neighborhoods, but most of the city is, comparatively, homogenous (and not just racially). And I know I am probably responding to a cheap rhetorical device, but integration and relative racial homogeneity are not mutually exclusive. In fact, it is quite the opposite, especially in a city in which the largest minority group is East Asians; it is when the non-white population grows to a critical mass that neighborhoods segregate, more aggressively.

  18. AWG (Average White Guy) says:

    Seattle has one of the lowest crime rates among major US cities.

    Per 100,000 population (2006)


    Seattle 5.1 / Detroit 47.3 / National 7

    Forcible Rape:

    Seattle 22.1 / Detroit 67.05 / National 32.2


    Seattle 285.6 / Detroit 818.6 / National 205.8

    Aggravated Assault:

    Seattle 398.4 / Detroit 1486 / National 336.5


    Seattle 1285.6 / Detroit 2050.3 / National 813.2

    Larceny Theft:

    Seattle 4090.6 / Detroit 2406.8 / National 2601.7

    Vehicle Theft:

    Seattle 1395.6 / Detroit 2591.1 / National 501.5

  19. Aaron says:

    Seattle has a pretty low crime rate too. What an amazing coincidence.

  20. Anonymous says:

    What is the thought process of creating a “diversity index?” I find it demented that someone could be so indoctrinated by a philosophy they can’t even explain. NO ONE has ever given us an explanation of why diversity is a stregnth, what are it’s benefits, and where is there concrete evidence that it is so needed and good. They can’t. They can only provide a definition of the word at best. My country home does and always has had their so-called “diversity index” of very near zero. Am I evil now? If so, how does my area’s “diversity index” differ from the gated communities which are home to the hypocrytes who preach this tripe?

  21. SavetheWest says:

    It sounds like the Broadmoor area would be a nice place to visit, if I ever make it out that way Westward. But if I wanted to see cool temps, gray skies & rain all day, I can do it by just peering out my window from my ranch-style home in a 95% White suburb of Cleveland. Oh wait. I shouldn’t advertise that. Some guilt-ridden lefties may be reading and want to invert the percentages of my neighborhood.

  22. voter says:

    “Are they counting all the suburbs, or just the city proper? My impression of Seattle is that it is not nearly as white or nondiverse as the news articles say, especially in the center of the city. Something is off about these estimates.”


    I agree. That concurs with my impression of the city every time I have visited there.

  23. Seek says:

    “Extraordinary variety” — what a phrase. I’ll remember it the next time I’m in Seattle walking around Pioneer Square wondering if those persons of color 20 feet away aren’t eyeing my wallet.

  24. Rajesh says:

    About the crime note, San Jose, CA is more than 50 percent “minority” and has the lowest crime rate for any U.S. city with a population over 500K. Does anyone want to take a stab and guess how we keep our crime rate low despite the fact that whites are minorities here?

  25. Anonymous says:

    Loony Seattle liberals love their diversity, as long as it goes home at night. The reason why the racial statistics don’t jibe with experience is because Seattle proper is a relatively small city, and by a blessing of geography, property values here are at nose-bleed level and that keeps blacks and hispanics out of most Seattle neighborhoods.

    Seattle is wedged between Puget Sound and Lake Washington, and there just isn’t any more buildable land close-in, so what already exists is at a premium. The few ghetto areas within Seattle were being reclaimed before the housing crash, and this was pushing mainly blacks out of the city and into South King County suburbs.

    However, you could stand in several nice neighborhoods on the South Seattle permieter and throw a rock into some bonafide hell holes like Rainier Valley, Rainier Beach, Skyway, and Renton, and the white liberal mental-patient cadre that runs Seattle and King County is running itself ragged trying to extend light rail and more bus service into all these areas.

    So, all the blacks and hispanics you see when you are in Seattle proper are there because they enjoy tax-subsidized rail and bus service into the city from Federal Way, Kent, Tukwila and other South King County cities I’ve already mentioned. These are the areas that would comprise the proposed “majority-minority” congressional district that was mentioned on AmRen some time ago. Martin Luther King County (no that’s not a joke, they changed the name a few years ago) is full of “diversity,” it just can’t afford to live in Seattle.

  26. Anonymous says:

    TO #16 – Roger Lee

    Yes, I’ve been to Spain, have you? I am so tired of hearing that the Spaniards aren’t White. They are White, they are European, in the northern part of the country there even Celts.

    I wonder if this comes from all those Flamenco Posters the Spanish Tourism Board puts out. Most of the Flamenco artists are Gypsies!

    Many of the Mexicans who brag about being pure Castillian are not. There are many who are, but they don’t brag abut it. They don’t come to the U.S. either.

    Enough already!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Ever notice “gentrification” is not considered blessed “diversity”?

    It’s because “diversity” is the newspeak way of pronouncing “Die, whitey!”

    Diversity is death. The program of “diversity” does not target the non-white countries that boast more than 90% of the world’s population. It is a weapon, aimed only at the small proportion of white populations, to make them non-white.

    It’s genocide.

  28. Jay says:

    Poster #11 has hit upon something I think about all the time. Why is it that 100% black or Brown neighborhoods is okay, but any concentration of whites is bad?

    I think we need to push this arguement with diversity liberals. Why don’t they try to forcibly integrate black areas by moving in latinos. Oh snap, that’s already happening and the blacks don’t like it. So then they should FORCE the blacks to accept the joys of diversity. Send in diversity trainers, mandate quotas of diversity in the local government, etc….

    Why don’t liberal diversity advocates forcibly integrate, through court action, all the all-brown areas of the southwest or in Florida? Why don’t they force all-latino neighborhoods to accept blacks, chinese, arabs, etc with planned housing, set-aside jobs, etc?

    Until we throw their hypocrisy back at them, the liberal crowd will get away with only beating us over the head and eliminating our cultural unity.

  29. Former Seattle Resident says:

    Black “crime-age” males (ages 14 – 65) make up only about 3% of Seattle, but at least 14 of the 28 homicides in Seattle in 2008 were committed by black males, at least 12 of the 21 in 2009, and at least 7 of the 17 in 2010 (4 of the 17 were committed by the same crazy Asian lady).

    See the annual year-end homicide tally articles at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (seattlepi dot com) for confirmation and more info.

  30. Anonymous says:

    24 — Rajesh wrote at 12:23 PM on May 3:

    About the crime note, San Jose, CA is more than 50 percent “minority” and has the lowest crime rate for any U.S. city with a population over 500K. Does anyone want to take a stab and guess how we keep our crime rate low despite the fact that whites are minorities here?

    We all know the answer to that Rajesh. The minorities in San Jose Cupertino etc are Indians and Asians who either own their own businesses or work in the technology industry.

    Most of the crime in San Jose proper is committed by hispanics.

  31. d=v says:

    Sometimes, I wonder if liberals think that if the races were evenly disbursed that there would be no ghetto. Gullible white liberals believe that if minorities were surrounded on all sides by whites, that they would not become thugs. The hipsters that are reclaiming the ghettos may be trying to bring variety and enjoy eiversity, but human nature will always repels mixing, and segregation occurs anyway.