Readers Write: (Sept. 30): Racism, Southwest LRT, ranked-choice voting, MNsure, generational burdens

  • Updated: September 29, 2013 - 6:54 PM

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It’s a misdirection to blame racism

Vina Kay looks at the educational achievement gap in the Minneapolis public schools and makes the tired and trite assessment that the cause is racism (“What causes gaps? let’s face the truth,” Sept. 26). The obvious implication should be that those in charge of and responsible for the Minneapolis schools are either racists or are coddling racism, both of which are absurd.

I don’t know if Kay has ever spent extended time as a teacher, but if she has, she should know that the greatest factor in educational achievement is not race but family health and value on education. Until inner-city families become more stable and place more value on education, the gap will stubbornly persist.

One of the most overlooked contributors to family health and stability is active participation in a church. If Kay wants to reduce the educational gap, she would do better to form alliances with inner-city pastors to strengthen families than to rail against racist strawpersons!

STAN WEESE, Brooklyn Park

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Southwest LRT

Hennepin County bears sole blame for this mess

Hennepin County spent years “planning” the Southwest corridor light-rail line. We’re now a month past the Met Council’s original light rail/freight route decision date, and two weeks away from the second delayed decision date, and members of the County Board act as though they are shocked, shocked to learn that federal interstate commerce laws give railroads veto power over freight routes (“Lack of options sets up battle on Southwest LRT,” Sept. 26).

Metro leaders may “complain bitterly,” but the legal rights and operating needs of the railroads were never hidden. Hennepin County is responsible for this mess, no one else.


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It’s an easier method than you may think

Some people feel that ranked-choice voting is confusing. Or, perhaps, some people benefit from trying to frame it as confusing. The fact is, RCV couldn’t be easier for voters. All you do is list your first, second and third choices for an office. That’s it. There’s no rocket science or even math involved. You’re not even required to list a second or third choice if you don’t have one.


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