Students at the University of Minnesota lack good streetlights, among other things.
If we’d known then what we know now …
My daughter attends the University of Minnesota, and we are all aware of the massive growth in crime on campus (“U students take their crime fears to Senate hearing,” Dec. 11). In considering an institution that brings so much money to the area, I’m appalled by the lack of even the most basic amenities for students.
For example, many upper-class students live along the streets surrounding campus. You could drop an atomic bomb in the area and not hit a quality streetlight. I can tell you it makes me sick with worry every night my daughter walks home along dark streets after a late class.
Also, my daughter called recently to say her bus hadn’t shown and that she was waiting in subzero weather for another. There are very few structures to protect students who use these buses regularly in inclement weather.
Also, the dorms are expensive, old, cold and ugly …
If the over-the-top crime had been occurring when we were selecting a college, you can be sure the U would not have been on our list.
NANCY MAXWELL, Edina
Rebound in receipts is nothing to celebrate
Front-page news that gambling is on the rise again is disturbing (“Charitable gambling rebounds statewide,” Dec. 10). Charitable-gambling proceeds amount to only 3 percent of the $1.1 billion spent on various forms of gambling now sanctioned by Minnesota. Really not much of a payoff considering the ravaging damages that gambling addictions wreak on lower- and middle-class family budgets.
Justifying gambling habits by reasoning that youth sports benefit is unwise. Using quotes from pulltab operation employees, who receive tips from winning patrons, who relate that people want to have fun, again, is ridiculous. Why would these people say anything else? Where are the comments from therapists who work with gambling addicts?
If Minnesotans who choose to gamble by playing pulltabs want to help charitable causes, why not designate 3 percent of their paychecks to the United Way instead? Then charities would not be so strapped that they have to jump into bed with gambling interests, and people could not kid themselves that their gambling is anything more than selfish.
Gambling on the rise is not a reason to celebrate the improving economy. Families having the means to visit a state park an extra weekend in the coming months and breathe some of this fresh air Mother Nature is sending us would provide a much longer-lasting benefit.
TIM MCDEVITT, St. Paul
CASTRO AND MANDELA
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