Legislature made progress on hunger, but there’s more to do

BY: - June 2, 2023

Our mission at Second Harvest Heartland is to end hunger together. For the past several years, that has driven the organization to innovate and grow rapidly so we could serve even more Minnesotans facing food insecurity. We provided 113 million meals in 2022 and are on pace to do even more in 2023 in response […]

Unprecedented investments poised to make Minnesota an energy innovation hotspot

BY: - June 1, 2023

In my two decades of working in the clean energy industry and engaging with the Minnesota Legislature, I have never before seen progress on energy and climate like I did this session.  The package of bills passed this year is nothing short of transformative for Minnesota’s energy industry. Starting with the passage of the 100% […]

Banning Noncompetes is an Important First Step. But it isn’t Enough.

BY: - May 31, 2023

After a whirlwind few months, the Minnesota Legislature has completed its most productive session in decades. Amidst a plethora of significant victories for everyday people, the comprehensive new labor legislation stands out as a major step forward for working people. Among other things, the massive labor law ensures paid sick leave for workers, moves workers […]

Higher education must stand up for itself in the face of culture war attacks

BY: - May 30, 2023

In 2023, higher education is a political dartboard and educators are being struck by darts thrown by conservatives and progressives. How those of us in higher education respond will be crucial for the future of our institutions and American democracy.  Those throwing darts at educators are combatants in culture wars sparked by the success of […]

A Memorial Day poem: “In Flanders Fields”

BY: - May 29, 2023

Courtesy of the Poetry Foundation In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row,     That mark our place; and in the sky     The larks, still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. We are the Dead. Short days ago We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,     Loved and were loved, […]

Remarks of then-President Barack Obama at Arlington, Memorial Day, 2016

BY: - May 29, 2023

Secretary Carter, General Dunford, Mr. Hallinan, Major General Becker, members of our Armed Forces, veterans, and most of all, our Gold Star families: I’m honored to be with you once again as we pay our respects, as Americans, to those who gave their lives for us all. Here, at Arlington, the deafening sounds of combat […]

They never supported us: Target and Bud Light show hypocrisy of ‘corporate Pride’

BY: - May 26, 2023

Even before Pride season has begun, evidence of corporations succumbing to far-right, anti-LGBTQ+ led boycotts is emerging. Bud Light, for instance, recently faced pressure after featuring transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney in a social media promotion. The simple act incited a boycott campaign by anti-LGBTQ+ conservative activists, including Matt Walsh, who hosts a right-wing podcast for […]

Christian nationalism: a threat to democracy

BY: and - May 26, 2023

You may have you noticed billboards near the state Capitol promoting separation of religion and government. They are sponsored by HumanistsMN and aim to draw attention to one of the biggest threats facing our democracy: the rise of Christian nationalism.  For decades, proponents of this worldview have been seeking to merge Christianity and American identities, […]

The northland has its own housing crisis

BY: - May 25, 2023

A successful marriage requires many ingredients, several of which I had to locate after the fact. But for my wife and me, a mutual desire to live on a lake in northern Minnesota sure helped. I distinctly recall the phone conversation after our first date when we stumbled on this shared goal.  Seven years later […]

Democrats made a big bet on themselves

BY: - May 23, 2023

There are decades when nothing happens; and there are weeks when decades happen. This insight has been attributed to figures as varied as Marx, Lenin and Steve Bannon, and I heard it from a shrewd lobbyist at the Capitol last week.  Whatever the provenance, this is what we’ve experienced around the Minnesota Legislature this year.  […]

A new North Star on paid leave from the North Star State

BY: - May 19, 2023

Minnesota’s Legislature is sending a landmark paid leave law to the desk of outspoken paid leave champion Gov. Tim Walz, making Minnesota the first state in the Midwest to guarantee paid leave. The law will cover nearly all of the state’s 2.8 million employees, with benefits beginning in January 2026. For Minnesota, this win will be game changing […]

A crazy idea worth considering: more school

BY: - May 18, 2023

The Legislature passed a bill that will fund schools for the next two years, and there’s a lot to like, primarily more money.  The legislative session’s education discourse has included a lot about free meals, reading pedagogy, social studies content, unemployment benefits for school hourly workers and what’s known around the Capitol as the “cross-subsidy,” […]