Commentary

COMMENTARY

An Open Letter to Sen. Joe Manchin | Column

BY: - June 29, 2021

Dear Sen. Joe Manchin, First, let me say I think your work on voting rights is to be admired. Also, I understand you represent a very red state and need to make sure those folks who vote Republican feel you represent them. But, if I may, I would like the opportunity to argue your point […]

COMMENTARY

Grading the state budget: Not bad, but there’s much more to do | Column

BY: - June 28, 2021

The Legislature and Gov. Tim Walz slogged their way to a state budget just days before a government shutdown. Given the inflow of federal cash paired with a divided government, it’s the kind of status quo with a shot of espresso agreement we would expect.  Which is fine, insofar as by many measures, Minnesota has […]

COMMENTARY

Federal policy has failed to protect Indigenous women | Opinion

BY: , and - June 25, 2021

Lawmakers in the nation’s capital have an opportunity to fix a longstanding problem with the landmark legislation to prevent domestic violence: its failure to protect Indigenous women. The 1994 Violence Against Women Act, or what is commonly called “VAWA,” was the first federal law criminalizing domestic violence. VAWA aimed to protect women by making battering […]

COMMENTARY

Stop using the ignorant ‘We’re a republic not a democracy’ line | Column

BY: - June 24, 2021

Who knew that America was filled with so many amateur social studies teachers? Whenever I write about Republican-led efforts in state capitols across the land to sharply curtail voting rights (which disproportionately impact Black and brown voters who tend to support Democrats), I’ll often get a letter from an aggrieved conservative reader who reminds me, […]

COMMENTARY

Nonprofits stepped up during the pandemic; time for state to help them is now | Opinion

BY: and - June 23, 2021

Some people are bouncing back from the COVID-19 pandemic and economic downturn, but many Minnesotans are still in need of the foundational infrastructure that nonprofits provide. A nonprofit resiliency and recovery fund would ensure these organizations can deliver critical services during the ongoing recovery. Minnesota’s tribal communities have experienced significant trauma throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. […]

COMMENTARY

A strategy to make policing work for all of us | Opinion

BY: - June 22, 2021

A year after George Floyd died under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer, we’d hoped to see Minneapolis as the place that’s finally getting public safety right. Instead, spasms of senseless violence continue to shake our city. George Floyd. Daunte Wright. Winston Smith. Three children under the age of 10 shot in the head, two […]

COMMENTARY

Like Henry Ford, Minnesota must lead | Opinion

BY: - June 21, 2021

Gov. Tim Walz’s decision to adopt the vehicle emissions standards originally set by California and now adopted by 14 other states is right for Minnesota’s economy, citizens and future. Our economy is dependent upon respecting our past successes and challenges, but more so embracing our present and building a future that protects our environment and […]

COMMENTARY

About that House GOP filibuster

BY: - June 18, 2021

This is ripped from Daily Reformer, your best place for Minnesota politics, policy and the hottest of hot takes. Sign up here. Into late Thursday night, Minnesota House Republicans held up a commerce and energy budget bill, At 11:41 p.m., Session Daily reports, the House voted to table the bill. Higher education, agriculture and Legacy […]

COMMENTARY

Juneteenth: The struggle for freedom and workers’ right to thrive | Opinion

BY: - June 18, 2021

On a cold day in December 2018, I was helping my son and daughter get ready for school. It was early in the morning and my kids had missed the school bus. They were running late and we were trying to get all their stuff together. Without any warning, a flashbang went off in the […]

COMMENTARY

The myth of the absent Black father | Essay

BY: - June 18, 2021

I am Black. I am a father. I love my children like nobody’s business.  I will not be invisible. I make this simple declaration because, even though involved Black fathers are the norm in the lives of Black children, we are dogged by a defamatory narrative about our supposed absenteeism. Are there Black fathers not […]

COMMENTARY

U.S Marshal’s fateful, foolish decision not to use bodycams | Opinion

BY: - June 17, 2021

Members of the NorthStar Fugitive Task Force shot and killed a Black man, Winston Smith, Jr. in Minneapolis on June 3, 2021. Early media reports said that Smith was wanted for murder, but like the initial police claim that George Floyd had died after a “medical incident during police interaction,” this was false. A more […]

COMMENTARY

Help SNAP recipients shop at farmers markets | Opinion

BY: and - June 16, 2021

Hunger Solutions Minnesota and its many partners throughout the state are dismayed that the Healthy Eating Here at Home program — otherwise known as “Market Bucks” — was eliminated in the agriculture budget agreement announced by lawmakers a few days ago. In a time of unprecedented food insecurity, with 1 in 9 Minnesotans struggling to […]