UMN Solidarity has occupied the first floor of the Social Sciences building on the University of Minnesota West Bank campus since Monday, March 28. At least a dozen students have spent nights there, and hundreds of students, teachers and citizens of the community have been in and out of the study lounge on the first floor of the 14-story building expressing support and demanding lower tuition and student fees, the right of university workers to collectively bargain and a more democratic voice within the University of Minnesota in the election of Regents.
Celebrating community! Latina leaders and friends host Noche de Paz (Night of Peace) event
What brought neighbors to come together in warmth and light on a cold February evening?
Inspired by the Peace in Powderhorn event on Dec. 1, Powderhorn neighbors kept the bonfires burning and came together to enjoy a Noche de Paz or Night of Peace. It was an evening of fire and ice-lanterns, love of community and warmth of togetherness on Feb. 13, 2011, in Powderhorn Park.
Obama lies about Libya
Barack Obama tried to explain the U. S. war against Libya on Monday, March 28, and he said a number of things that simply are not true.
He said, “Gaddafi had lost the confidence of his people.” Compared to most other Arab countries, Gaddafi seems to enjoy widespread if not universal
support. The city of Benghazi is an isolated exception. Thomas C. Mountain has been following events in Libya for 25 years. Here is his assessment: “In 1969 when Col. Gaddafi came to power by overthrowing the Libyan king in a
military coup, Libyans were one of the poorest people in the world with an annual per capita income of less than $60.
Stephanie Smith murdered
About 40 people gathered Tuesday afternoon, March 29, to remember Stephanie Smith, who was shot to death while sitting in a parked car in the 3400 block of Park Avenue the night before. Witnesses told KARE 11 news that two men came up alongside the vehicle and fired.
A man who was with her in the car was also shot, but his wound was not life-threatening, and he was able to drive to Abbott Northwestern Hospital. Smith was declared dead at the emergency room, and the man was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center for treatment of his injury.
Stephanie Smith grew up in South Minneapolis. She dropped out of high school but finished her G.E.D. and was studying psychology at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. She worked part-time as a personal care attendant.
According to a StarTribune report, she and Rea Smith (no relation) had just bought airline tickets to Atlanta, and they were thinking about moving there.
Anyone with information about the murder should call 612-692-8477. Information can be given anonymously.
Letter to the editor
Low-income students can go to medical school
Today as the cost of a medical education escalates into the “far blue yonder,” it’s hard to even imagine an educational facility that not only provides such education free but is also especially interested in attracting low-income people of color. But it does exist. All classes and living expenses are provided free at the 12-year-old Latin American School of Medicine, ELAM, located in Santa Fe, Playa, Cuba. It’s no luxury facility; running water is available only at certain hours and toilets have to be flushed with a bucket; the cafeteria food is not great, and there is no air-conditioning. However, the school is fully accredited.
Interestingly, no surprises found among birds (or humans) in March
Many signs of spring are finally showing up, but still very few song or other small birds. I did see some small flying objects on March 14. They were flies, one in and one out, on the sunny side of the house. I sent the inside one out to join the other, though they were not of the same fly species.
On that day, I also saw four Goldfinches at the finch feeder at the same time. The feeder holds four birds on four perches but usually only two of any kind of bird is there at any one time without bird disputes. Some days
later, March 26, I saw a Goldfinch that had mostly returned to his “gold”— really bright yellow—and black summer colors.
Stop the wars! Stop the FBI
harassment of the peace movement!
More than 400 people marched on Saturday, March 19, from the Martin Luther King Center in St. Paul to the State Capitol as part of a national day of anti-war protests.
The central demand of the protest was: “Bring the troops home now!” Meredith Aby, one of the principal organizers of the Anti-War Committee and
one of the people originally subpoenaed and who refused to testify before a grand jury in Chicago about the activities of the peace movement in Minneapolis, spoke at the rally before the march:
“Almost every day I turn on the radio and hear Clinton and Obama criticize Middle Eastern and North African countries for criminalizing dissent. It is outrageous that the U. S. is using protecting the right to dissent as an
excuse to justify war against Libya, while anti-war activists are targeted right here in the U. S. for daring to criticize the U. S. government and protest against the very wars they are justifying.
America 2011: A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand
“Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.” **Abraham Lincoln, State of the Union address 12/3/1861
Celebrate Mayday with Heart of the Beast on May 1st
This year the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theater’s Mayday Parade and Celebration will happen on May 1. It always happens on the first Sunday in May, but only once every seven years or so does it actually fall on the day that is celebrated as Mayday throughout the rest of the world.
The celebration of Mayday is an ancient ritual marking the beginning of spring. In medieval England workers were given the day off to enjoy the first warm day and dance around a Maypole. For hundreds of years workers were given the day to celebrate.
On May 4, 1886, in Haymarket Square in Chicago socialists and anarchists were speaking to a large demonstration of workers about agitating for the eight-hour day. Police were ready to break up the demonstration when someone placed a bomb under a police wagon. The blast and resulting gunfire killed eight officers (probably most of them died from friendly fire). Eight of the anarchists were tried for murder and four were convicted and executed.
The memory of Clarissa Walker
If you are a Southsider and don’t know Mrs. Walker, or don’t know her work, you haven’t been paying attention. Mrs. Walker and her posse of elders convinced the school board, when they were going to tear down Bryant Junior
High, to give it to the neighborhood as a community center. You probably know it as Sabathani.
Superintendents’ Commentary on K-12 Omnibus Bill
Late in the month of March, both the House and enate education committees approved legislation that will deal devastating blows to city schools by divesting state support for low-income learners while simultaneously raising property taxes in our three cities. Why would the Legislature turn its back on its population centers? We have the potential to produce exceptional talent that will make Minnesota a global leader. This education policy will not successfully bring us to 2050 with a diverse work force ready to innovate and lead.
Thieves in high places steal our government
In American politics, the past not only sticks with us, but it often provides the best definition of what’s going on in the politics of the present, so it can be useful to revisit some powerful words from our history.
Today’s media and political powers, for example, keep using the word “conservatism” to describe current political trends in our democratic republic. Poor choice of words. From the Koch brothers to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, from GOP Speaker of the House John Boehner to such anti-worker governors as Walker of Wisconsin, an autocratic power grab is underway to enthrone corporate power and moneyed elites to rule unilaterally over our government, economy and environment. Nothing conservative about that!
Q: My daughter has allergies. What features should we be looking for in our first home?
A: First off, glad to hear you’re house hunting! I cannot think of a better time in recent history to be buying than right now. Low interest rates and lots of inventory means that you are in the driver’s seat.
But regardless of the home you buy, there will be some basic things you should consider when trying to find the one with the best indoor air quality.
First off, carpeting is a no-no. All sorts of nasty allergens, from pet dander to dust, gather in the fiber and padding. But don’t discount a home because there’s carpet. Check to see if there are wood floors hiding underneath. If you get them refinished before you move in, it’ll be like the carpet never existed.