I'm bothered by much of the pro-stadium logic. If all of the stadium supporters would like to get together and write a giant check to the Wilfs, that's fine with me. Just stay out of my pocket and out of the government's pocket.
ANDREW BERG, VADNAIS HEIGHTS
• • •
I'm sick of suburban Republicans complaining about money spent on "nonessential" trains and bike paths that "a fraction of the population use," while beating the drum for taxpayer bailout of millionaire sports players and owners with a Vikings stadium. As someone who uses bike paths and the Hiawatha Line, I can tell you that these amenities are "used" and make a significant contribution to the livability of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
EVAN PAGE, MINNEAPOLIS
• • •
When the Los Angeles Vikings win a Super Bowl in a couple of years, we can all thank Minnesota House Speaker Kurt Zellers for our pain. We won't forget that Zellers is responsible for another L.A. championship team.
SCOTT WALES, HOPKINS
* * *
Gov. Mark Dayton hit the nail on the head when he spoke of "prejudice against public school teachers," but to undercut education reform will only perpetuate the problem ("Teacher-tenure veto halts a top GOP priority," May 4). Students, teachers and taxpayers have been held hostage for years by outdated, protectionist union regulations that defy common sense and damage the opportunity for students to get an education by putting bad teachers ahead of good students. No wonder the public is frustrated. Unfortunately, teachers who may not even support Education Minnesota or their PAC are forced to be members and bear the brunt of the frustration that should go to the union itself and DFL legislators. For years, the teachers union, Education Minnesota, has funded DFL campaigns, and the DFL has supported the union's stranglehold on education. Students, parents and taxpayers are completely out of the loop. Teachers may have to stand up for themselves. They do deserve better, and this reform would have opened the door for building a better future for them and their students.
CHERIE RIESENBERG, ST. PAUL
* * *
I respect and appreciate the role the Star Tribune plays in fostering dialogue on the important issues of our day. While we've not always held the same opinions or seen these issues through the same lens, I know that the publishers and editors of the paper are good people who, like me, work hard to fulfill their mission with dedication and integrity.
So it's with a heavy heart that I write to express my sadness at the depiction of the Catholic Church in Steve Sack's April 30 editorial cartoon. We welcome the dialogue about these important issues, but the depiction crossed the line. Let us address our differences with courtesy, care and compassion. It's only then that we may find some common ground and understanding.
THE REV. JOHN C. NIENSTEDT, ARCHBISHOP OF ST. PAUL AND MINNEAPOLISs
• • •
The writer of the May 3 Letter of the Day labels Sack's editorial cartoon depicting a confrontation between the Pope Benedict and a Catholic nun (and Jesus) as "anti-Catholic." To the contrary, Sack illustrates internal conflict in the church that has not diminished over the centuries. Sack enlightens readers to the underlying dynamic of Christian service by U.S. nuns. Exposing the dirty laundry of internal conflict within an organization -- especially in a humorous way -- may be the best way to support the health and longevity of an organization. Sack should be awarded a Catholic medal for celebrating the good works of nuns and their close connection to the teachings and example of Christ.
STEVE WATSON, MINNEAPOLIS
* * *
Two years ago, while visiting Vancouver, B.C. , I fell and dislocated my shoulder. I was required to pay the emergency room part of the hospital bill -- nearly $3,900 -- before I left the hospital. (Medicare does not pay out of the country.)
My stay was about eight hours. I had X-rays that were read incorrectly -- radiologists didn't catch three breaks in my arm. I had anesthesia to put my arm back in the socket. I did not have surgery.
By the time I returned to Minnesota, my bill totaled more than $9,200, not counting the costs for an ambulance and physicians.
After about a year of pleading, I persuaded my insurance company to cover about 80 percent of the costs. The insurance company, too, thought the charges were obscene.
Two lessons learned: First, do not leave the country without travel insurance. Second, I now have a better idea of who's paying for Canada's "free" health care.
JOANNE HAUGEN, BURNVSILLE