LETTER: ‘What’s the Future of Burien?’

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[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a Letter to the Editor, written by a Reader. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The B-Town Blog nor its staff:]

What’s the Future of Burien?

As I think about Initiative 1/Ord. 651, I think looking back 10-20 years from now…what will this look like?

Will the Burien City Council still all be arguing white folks? Will there be citizens of color on the city council?

Based on current trends, Burien will be more non-white than white.

What I think is that Initiative 1 is really short-sighted, that we are persecuting our neighbors with anti-immigrant policies and allowing an outsider – Craig Keller / Respect Washington – to influence our actions with his hate and fear mongering. Personally, I will do everything I can to defeat Initiative 1. Further, I look forward to some new POV on the city council. I am deeply alarmed by those that support Initiative 1. I look forward in 10-20 years to seeing an undivided community with enormous racial diversity…not a “whites only” country club.

What do you see?

– David Feinberg

PS: If you publish under a pseudonym, I may not respond. If you don’t have the courage to attach your name to your views, why should I give you the time of day?

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31 Responses to “LETTER: ‘What’s the Future of Burien?’”
  1. Randy Johnson says:

    It might be worthwhile to remember that Initiative 1 only places the ‘Sanctuary City’ measure on the ballot for a vote by Burien residents.

    Personally, I support our ability to make our desires known about 651.

  2. Great says:

    Huh. Looks like a new sheriff’s in town. 🙂

  3. Question Authority says:

    Your viewpoint reeks of the Social Justice Warrior agenda permeating society and fails to draw the distinction of legal standing in a community. Regardless of who my neighbor is or what Burien is to become, I don’t care for the overt condoning of immigration law violations as normal behavior and the new Burien. Your opinion to just continue to look away and think that laws don’t matter and the subsequent cost to society is acceptable, really shows how dream laden your views are and I along with plenty of others don’t share them.

  4. Seahurst resident says:

    Starting this discussion from white/non-white perspective is completely wrong. I believe what the people of Burien want is living in a safe city that thrives with unique businesses, restaurants and festivals. Whether that is white or non-white is irrelevant. Burien isn’t called White Center, but is becoming like White Center for a bad reason.

    The current high crime rate in Burien is alarming and we may hope that we get a new council that addresses this issue and then you will see Burien thrive and be a good place for everyone who has respect for the law and each other.

  5. Lee Moyer says:

    I agree completely. Proud to be part of an open minded minority on this blog. Of course, a minority of votes doesn’t mean a minority of voters.

  6. eric says:

    I hope history will not look back and say Burien succumbed to fear and hate. Proposition 1 is driven by little else.

    The claim that proposition 1 has anything to do with crime prevention is false. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/10/03/sanctuary-cities-do-not-experience-an-increase-in-crime/?utm_term=.841d5ff1a3c1.

    I have seen national coverage of Burien’s Proposition 1. Those who would divide us hope it passes, those would like to see us come together and accomplish great things want to see it fail. The choice is our Burien. Join the fear and divide neighbour against neighbour, or come together and work together for the best solutions to the difficult problems we all face.

    I have lived in Burien most of my life. To see Proposition 1 even make it to the ballot makes me sad. If fear wins, and Proposition 1 should pass, I will be ashamed. Burien is better than that.

  7. Douglas Sykes says:

    Mr. Feinberg,

    A bit of retrospective may be in order here. While our current council may strike you as a “whites only” club, Burien has had, and hopefully will have, more qualified council members that do not hail just from northern european stock. Please note that surname is not a great indicator of ethnicity or heritage. As examples; our first mayor in 1992 – Arun Jhaveri and Wing Woo Council member 2002 -2003. In 2013 two candidates for position 7 were of hispanic heritage – Chuck Rangel (no fan of Ordinance 651) and Joey Martinez, but we chose Mr. Armstrong. I think you may be pleasantly surprised to find many varied points of view in the citizens who engage with our city. I believe we can agree that heritage is not a determining requirement for serving as a council member, rather it is the desire to serve our community, the ability to do the work required of our council members, and the approval of city voters.

  8. Murlynd says:

    I’m fat and feel that the seat belt laws are a personal attack driven by hate. I’m going to ignore them. This is what this argument sounds like. Illegal is still illegal. You have to start somewhere.

  9. David Silver says:

    I think Burien should reach out to the cartels and invite them into the city to experience love. This will change them. Don’t ask, don’t tell on immigration.

    Let’s all enjoy lawlessness.

    • Captain obvious says:

      Well David silver I have to ask what cartel or gang lives out of your complex and what is your proof that they are a gang or cartel. Also what is your proof that people living in the same complex as you.

      Are actually illegal aliens are you just assuming they are. Also have to talk to owners or mangers of the property. Have you talked to county or city or even the feds. About possibly of the owners of renting to illegal aliens.

      This is a different issue then a sanctuary city issue if they are receiving any assistance from the county, city or federal government. Ice still does raids if we are a sanctuary city or not.

      So if you have proof that these people are illegal aliens you can still turn them in. Sanctuary city just stops the police from asking them there citizenship in a stop. The federal government has different rules.

    • capt obvious says:

      Here are some links below to help you. Might make a bigger difference than complaining on a blog about a issue.

      Homeland security Ice tip form

      Washington state dshs fraud tip form

      Just make sure you have good information and not wasting someones time.

  10. Captain obvious says:

    I have feeling in 20 years People from the same areas now. Will still blame all the issue’s on what ever city council members they don’t agree with. That seems to be the real normal process here. Then when the next batch comes in accuse them of being the same as the past city council. Then make over dramatize assumptions about every issue as if it’s end of the world.

  11. Question Authority says:

    NOMTOM and don’t forget it !

  12. Lake Burien says:

    It’s letters like this that divide people. You are obviously not a problem solver.

  13. Pat Paulsen says:

    If the city passes this as law, Burien WILL become a city of lawlessness. Victims of crime will be afraid to report crime which emboldens the criminal. Guess what? You will have more crime and violence and the criminal will become emboldened enough to target YOU next. Good luck.

    No one is stopping the INS from doing it’s job, nor is anyone paying the city to do INS dirty work! The taxpayers of Burien will have more crime on the streets because the cops are too busy playing INS cops to deal with your issues.


  14. Ken says:

    The ignorance I see regarding sanctuary cities is pathetic. The majority of undocumented immigrants are out there trying to make an honest living. A lot of them live in houses with way more people in them than is comfortable for anyone because that is what they can afford. A lot of the undocumented immigrants send money back to their families in their home country because their families have it even harder than they do. When that undocumented immigrant gets beat up and robbed by someone who thinks they have more right to be here because their ancestors were part of the original landing party who killed off most of the indigenous population they are afraid to go to the police. With sanctuary status that crime victim can go to the police and report the assault and robbery without fear of being deported.
    The majority of undocumented immigrants are good people who are trying to make a better life for themselves and their families just like the rest of us.
    Ordinance 651 does not protect undocumented immigrants who are perpetrators of crimes. I guarantee that if someone is busted for a violent crime it will be discovered pretty fast whether they are here legally or not.
    I read a letter on the B-town blog a while back where the author said that someone who “appeared” to be an illegal immigrant pulled a knife on them. What the hell does an illegal immigrant look like?

  15. Carol says:

    Please stop equating ideas/actions with which you disagree with evil and hateful intent. You don’t know me: you have no clue what I think or am. Yet, because we disagree, you assume I must be ridden with hate, sexism, racism, xenophobia, homophobia, Islamophobia and, good grief!, white supremacy. Do you actually know, and like, anyone who disagrees with you? If not, perhaps you could embrace a little diversity of your own. Or even develop the ability to listen without knee jerk reaction to buzz words. Oh, and by the way, this really applies to all of us. I do try to listen to ‘your side’, but all they want to do is yell, insult and deny there is any point but their own. Try a cogent, factual, honest approach and drop the invective. Might be surprised…

  16. David Feinberg says:

    To all the people who publish under a pseudonym:
    Please consider re-registering and posting as a person.

    To all the people who publish under a pseudonym: and are just rebutting or trolling:
    Great, Dudley Dooright, QA, Murlynd, David Siver, Lake Burien, Pat Paulson:
    No comment.

    It’s very easy to say whatever you want anonymously, I’d encourage you to have the courage to post as yourself and contribute instead of sniping and trolling.

    • Boulevard Barb says:

      Have you ever considered the risk for identity theft, home invasion, burglary, stalking, harassment, or who knows what else by posting with your real name on the web?

      • Captain obvious says:

        It could also cause some of the issue’s Boulevard Barb mentioned to happen to Jean, Michael and Miriam.

        Just by posting your full name

  17. David Feinberg says:


    No, I don’t know you, nor do I assume any of your list. hate, sexism, racism, xenophobia, homophobia, Islamophobia on the part of any individual without evidence. Yes I think Initiative 1 embraces all those things and hope and pray it doesn’t reflect the views of those who support it. TY, I do listen to people all the time, if they actually say something. It is a lot easier in 1 on 1 conversation than on an internet forum. Why don’t you tell us why you believe what you do or why you support Init 1, instead of taking my inventory?

    • Carol says:

      Thanks, David I’m happy to engage in a civil conversation with anyone with a cogent point of view. I’ve lived in Burien since 1960, worked for JFK’s election at 12 years old. I was a charter member of NOW , Radical Women and NARAL. I’ve volunteered at Bailey Bushay House and Children’s and two animal shelters. I have traveled throughout Mexico, Guatemala Honduras and Belize, and speak passable Spanish. So, not a hater, OK? That being said, I am first an American, not a Burienite. The federal government has the responsibility for immigration policy and laws. And I agree the laws are horribly outdated and confusing. However, we have to have cohesion of shared law and viable borders in order to be a sovereign nation. I feel it’s imperative for Congress to address the immigration problem, not Burien City Council. There must be humane ways to accomplish immigration reform. It’s complicated but not more than people of good will and open minds can do. In short, I will continue to badger my reps, state and federal, to work on solving the problem of illegal immigration for the good of everyone. And vote against the sanctuary city ordinance.

  18. David Feinberg says:

    Douglas Sykes,
    Point well taken, Thank you

  19. David Feinberg says:

    I’m NOT advocating looking away from laws. what I see is a complicated situation that does not have a Black or White solution. This is a nuanced discussion and as long as we just scrape the surface with the discussion of, I’m just supporting the RoL. We are not having a real discussion. There is not a cut a dried interpretation of the law. Under Obama, the laws were enforced on way and under Trump another way:
    My point as ever is this idea of the RoL is very soft.

    In 2015 there were 11,000,000 undocumented immigrants; should we round them all up and send them back?
    It’s simply not possible or necessarily desirable.

    What’s wrong with a path to citizenship?

    There’s been a lot of intentional disinformation going around about undocumented immigrants, and sanctuary cities.
    Undocumented immigrants:
    1. Do in fact pay taxes with an INS number, they are not eligible to receive government benefits
    2. Less than 3% of the crimes in this country (the other 97% are committed by fellow American citizens)
    3. They aren’t stealing anyone’s jobs but often working the ones that no one else wants.

    For sanctuary cities,
    Heres some links to useful data:
    Undocumented immigrants and taxes
    Immigrants and crime:
    Sanctuary City info:
    Undocumented immigrants and the economy:
    Undocumented immigrants don’t get welfare and aren’t a drain on the system:
    The illegal immigration reform and accountability act of 1996, that prevents undocumented immigrants from receiving welfare:

  20. David Feinberg says:

    Boulevard Barb,
    Yes I have and frankly I am more concerned with right wing ‘haters’ that identity thieves or common criminals.

    I believe that standing up and speaking to something that concerns me is worth taking a stand for.

    My real point is that it is very easy to hide behind the anonymity of the internet and say horrible things. My thanks to the editor for filtering the worst of it.

    Yes I will answer reasonable questions and reasonable responses.

  21. David Feinberg says:

    Hi Carol,

    Thank you for your response and bonafides. I have no such pedigree just a concerned citizen with some moral outrage regarding what is going on both nationally and in my community. I agree this is a national issue but it is playing out here in Burien. So we have Ord651 and now init1.

    My problem’s with Init1:
    1 Funded by outside anti-immigrant money
    2. Uses fear and hate (DACA rapist) to carry it’s anti-immigrant message
    3. The paid signature gathers were less than honest (so it goes).
    3. Craig Keller doesn’t live here (though he successfully maintained he does) so Init1 should be legally challenged.

    I don’t really have a problem with.

    I agree this is a complicated issue and as I watch the above play out. I see many people supporting Init1 as a single issue RoL question and IMO a lot of implied racial bias.

    Please tell me, how do you see ord651/init1 playing out?

    • Carol says:

      David, I totally get your concern with the current state of political affairs, but I think you may be reading an awful lot of fear and negativity into this (truly minor) ordinance change. The problems you state with the ordinance have more to do with the way in which it was placed on the ballot, no? Having been involved in literally dozens of these types of campaigns, I can assure you that the items you cite are not unusual. Most ‘initiatives’ are started and/or run by a rich guy or an organization pushing an agenda. They routinely exaggerate claims and use the direst of language to make their point. They rarely live in the area they try to influence, as the money they spend allows them in. They all use paid signature gatherers. This whole scene kinda stinks, but it’s business as usual.

      As for the ordinance itself, I doubt much of anything will change. There’s no need to stop helping our neighbors and caring about those who come in search of a better life. If a felon is being held by our police and the feds put forth the required evidence to take custody of him, our police must abide by this lawful order. Pretty much that’s all it is.

      I’m thinking we kind of agree on some things, probably not on a bunch of others, but it’s been good talking to you. And nobody yelled! Yay!

      • David Feinberg says:

        Hi Carol,

        Yes in the scheme of things this is not huge or earth shattering. But if you are undocumented, yet more cause for concern and now we have the DACA pronouncement.

        Here’s my deal on this:
        1. I do believe there is a lot of racism driving this initiative
        2. Go to the truly awful websites (kkk) and they preach change at a local level
        3. The groups that drive these initiatives are looking to hit lots of ‘singles’ so they can say. “in xxx cities we defeated….thus and so”

        Because of the above I am committed to help defeat Init1, in context it is very important.

        I appreciate your POV and do not call it out. I, am late to activism, I’m near retirement age and finding myself outraged not for the first time but steamed enough I want to do my part. I am deeply grateful to the editor for publishing my letters, and I’m grateful to silent members of the community who have reached out and thanked me for taking a stand.

        While I’m sure it doesn’t seem like it to those opposed, I am trying to model that we Burien neighbors can have reasonable conversations on the above. I will keep writing and hopefully people will join in and post the opposing view, which despite my repeated attempts and multiple letters still has not happened.

        Yes we badly need immigration reform and just as badly we need to talk neighbor to neighbor about our beliefs and what we want for Burien.

        We probably agree on a lot….and that’s a long ways from where we started. Maybe someone who is in favor of Init1 will write and articulate why and enter into public discussion.

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