You chose to go to work every day as well after all ... you don't have to, you can be homeless (if I'm going to use similar populist example as you).
It's time for cities like to Seattle to realize that their policies are a colossal failure and it's time to reverse course. Unfortunately, they are doing the opposite and doubling down on the same policies which created the mess.
Another thing to look at is Californias taxes are very high. If you were adjust Californias poverty rate to reflect the cost of living, California would have some of the poorest communities.