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Seattle, a welcoming, progressive, sanctuary city

Should we rebrand the Emerald City?

Joe Wolf

It may be time to rebrand the Emerald City.

Seattle has declared itself a Sanctuary city, a city that needs a reasonable cause for checking someone’s citizenship or immigration status. Our city is making international news for its stand. So is our state as it challenges the immigration ban. The battle of the Washingtons begins. If nothing else, name confusion may reign.

The Brooking Institution has identified “The 5 kinds of cities we’ll see in the populist era”: Besieged, Opposition, Progressive, Prosperous, and Networked. We were listed under Progressive; though we could fit into any of those categories except for besieged. They could add another, Photogenic, because the headline photo was our skyline backed by Mt. Rainier.

As Seattle Weekly reported,

“Seattle City Council unanimously passed a resolution declaring Seattle a “Welcoming City” to the immigrants, refugees and Muslims that President Donald Trump targeted last week in an executive order.“

Perhaps that was a dodge around mentioning Sanctuary status, but the sentiment and the procedural impact may be the same.

With Starbucks announcing a plan to hire refugees; Amazon, Microsoft, Expedia and other companies associated with Seattle participating in lawsuits over the immigration ban, and a far-above average turnout for the Womxn’s March, we shouldn’t be surprised if someone else rebrands us for us.

Of course, we are still the second greenest city in the U.S. so maybe Emerald City will remain. Besides, imagine changing all of that stationery and souvenirs.