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In his Sunday commentary (“Gentleman’: A concept put asunder,” June 8) about today’s men, D.J. Tice misses the point, several times. First, rape hasn’t increased, but reporting has. The federal report about rape on campuses that recommends bystander intervention is not, as Tice says, “the most depressing evidence unearthed to date of America’s cultural decline.” Rape culture has thrived because we haven’t recognized when a woman in our midst is being targeted, so it’s great that we’re now learning to see it, and intervene.
Most men are not brutes, but #NotAllMen wasn’t a rebuttal to the #YesAllWomen hashtag that went viral worldwide; the reverse is true. #YesAllWomen was a response to all of the men online who said “Not all men” when women brought up rape culture, as an attempt to shut down the conversation.
Tice laments the passing of traditional manliness, but it’s part of the problem. Those men often think of women as lesser, as sex objects or as possessions. I prefer men who are strong enough to see women as equals and, frankly, being thought of as a “damsel in distress” is condescending. Tice adds that women, with our wombs, feel important in society, whereas men feel lonely and unimportant. Besides the fact that no woman wants to be reduced to her reproductive function, I’d venture that most people would agree that this is nonsense. Finally, winning a woman’s acceptance is one thing, but rape is quite another. “Misbehaving” in pursuit of women is a strange euphemism for the latter.
Kirsten Ragatz, Minneapolis
Spills are just too risky, so why take chances?
Mark Curwin’s reassurances about the safety of the proposed Sandpiper oil pipeline ring hollow (“For pristine wetlands, oil boom is new threat,” June 8). He says his company has learned its lesson from a recent large spill. The people at Enbridge seem to be slow learners. Their largest Minnesota spill was in 1991, when 1.7 million gallons of oil fouled a wetland and the Prairie River on the edge of Grand Rapids. (The company was then called Lakehead.) There have been many spills since.
Curwin says new technology will save us. He forgets that technology is made by humans and that it is fallible. He says operators will immediately shut down any pipeline having a problem, but there was a similar rule in place in 1991. Operators were to take 10 minutes to determine if their low pressure readings were accurate and, if still in doubt, shut the pipe down. Instead, they let oil flow out of that burst pipe for over an hour.
Fool us once, Enbridge, shame on you. Fool us again and again, shame on us.
Mary Jean Port, Minneapolis
Want to honor Dad? Pick up your trash
Forget the tie, or the grill. I’m asking my family to join me for an hour in picking up trash along the entrance and exit ramps to the freeway where I get on and off daily and where, while waiting for the entrance light to turn green, I look around and see all of the litter that people throw out of the windows of their cars. Ugh!
William Wangensteen, Minneapolis
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.