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On Other Blogs Today: Hooray for Pot, Gays, and Urbanism

Our daily roundup.

By Erica C. Barnett December 6, 2012



1. Pot is legal! SPD's Jonah Spangenthal-Lee says cops won't be cracking down on public tokers; the Seattle Times reports that hundreds of celebrants gathered at Seattle Center to celebrate; and NPR's always-excellent Planet Money (in, no kidding, its 420th episode) looks at the economics of pot legalization—specifically, will Washington's I-502 make it easier for pot purveyors to get banking services like any other business?

2. Gay marriage is legal in Washington! And the national media are all over it, from the LA Times to the Wall Street Journal to the wedding blog The Knot, which has a servicey feature that includes the subhead, "Planning a gay wedding? All you need to know!"  

3. Elsewhere in its pages, the Times reports what PubliCola readers have known (or disputed) for ages now: The "War on Cars" is a myth, particularly in Seattle, which ranks at the bottom of a list of 25 US cities in the number of residents who live without a car.

That means we're behind New York City (No. 1), of course, but we also trail Buffalo (No. 6), Miami (No. 15), and even Atlanta (No. 22). Only Seattle's densest neighborhoods, like downtown, the University District, and Capitol Hill, approached the carlessness levels of places like New York and San Francisco (No. 8); the rest of the city is, thanks to a combination of single-family zoning and poor transit service, heavily car-dependent.

4. That's great news, we're sure, to Bellevue megadeveloper and transit opponent Kemper Freeman, who, as Crosscut reports, has launched his own blog. The "transportation goals" page, unsurprisingly, makes the totally counterfactual case that people are driving more than ever, therefore we need to build more roads everywhere, but especially to Freeman's developments in Bellevue. 

"Increased mobility has always been one of civilization’s goals – moving faster and further," Freeman writes. "Why now are our planning agencies seeking to limit travel?"

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