Commentary

To protect the right to vote, kill or change the filibuster — Opinion

BY: - September 22, 2021

Democrats in the U.S. Senate recently introduced a new piece of legislation, the Freedom to Vote Act. Minnesota’s very own DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar is the lead sponsor on the bill. This proposal represents the latest efforts by members of the Senate to pass comprehensive voting rights and pro-democracy legislation. Earlier legislation on these issues […]

Franklin encampment crisis should spur us to do something about homelessness — Opinion

BY: - September 21, 2021

The recent Reformer article on the Franklin Street encampment highlighted the ongoing crisis of unsheltered homelessness, especially in the Indigenous community. There is undoubtedly a housing and homelessness crisis in Minneapolis and in communities all across Minnesota. State and local governments must invest in the services and infrastructure to address it on a systemic level. […]

Police unions should be illegal — Column

BY: - September 20, 2021

Imagine in the wake of the Abu Ghraib prison torture scandal or the massacre at My Lai, the union representing American soldiers sent out virulent statements of support for the accused officers and enlisted men. Picture the leadership of the soldiers’ union going on TV to defend the actions of their union brethren, warning Americans […]

Minnesota must prepare for its role in a post-Roe world — Opinion

BY: and - September 17, 2021

Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to enforce Roe v. Wade and allowed a Texas abortion ban to go into effect. SB 8 is a Texas law that deputizes individuals and anti-abortion extremists to enforce the state’s six-week abortion ban. Right now, any individual in the state of Texas can sue anyone who helps another person obtain an abortion — even […]

Standing up to special interests — Opinion

BY: , , , and - September 16, 2021

Today, we are at the crossroads. On the one hand, we have the growing threats of climate change, which threatens us with fires, droughts and violent weather. On the other hand, we have a government that is increasingly being captured by special interests, which — as a result of the 2010 Supreme Court decision known […]

What was it all for? — Essay

BY: - September 14, 2021

I can still taste the sand, feel the heat on my skin.  We were told to smell our water before we drank it, just in case something had been added to it. I remember the faces, including my own, when brothers or sisters in arms lost their lives.  I remember the look of shock from […]

Book excerpt: Addressing congestion with efficiency

BY: - September 13, 2021

The following is an excerpt from Chapter Six of “Confessions of a Recovering Engineer: Transportation for a Strong Town,” the latest book in the Strong Towns series. It has been slightly modified for this space. Ramp meters are those mini traffic signals that queue vehicles as they enter the highway. Wikipedia explains their rationale succinctly: […]

The myth of the “14 bosses”: Police ballot initiative would restore balance — Opinion

BY: - September 10, 2021

Let’s address a common misrepresentation floating around about the Minneapolis police ballot  initiative voters will decide on in November: That its passage would lead to the City Council running the new public safety agency — the myth of the 14 bosses.  The myth appears to be a public relations strategy to create a vision of […]

Vaccines for kids are coming but they can’t be rushed

BY: - September 9, 2021

For weeks, questions from concerned parents have poured in:  Why isn’t the COVID-19 vaccine approved for children under age 12 yet? When will a vaccine for children be available? Can the vaccine be given off-label? These are all good questions, and the answers aren’t easy.  After the SARS-CoV-2 virus was identified in late 2019, clinical […]

Measuring greenhouse gases: No time for delays — Opinion

BY: - September 8, 2021

The world’s climate scientists just rang the alarm bell again, louder than ever. The latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change confirms that today’s unfolding climate crisis is unquestionably caused by humanity, especially our use of fossil fuels. We need to make big changes to avoid an irreversible global catastrophe, and we need […]

View from a little boy running across a play structure bridge

Poverty-shrinking policies changing the lives of millions should be made permanent — Opinion

BY: and - September 7, 2021

Full tummies and fridges; safe housing; warm clothing for the coming winter. These are the types of basics — along with medicine, school supplies, and car repairs — that the expanded federal Child Tax Credits (CTC) paid for when Minnesota families started receiving part of their tax credits in July.   Minnesota CTC payments in July […]

When the water is gone, oil cannot replace it — Opinion

BY: and - September 3, 2021

In the same week of August that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a dire report on our climate future, the U.S. Senate passed a $1 trillion infrastructure bill. The IPCC report screams for governments to take action to prevent climate change, while the infrastructure bill allots a small amount of money to […]