With all the opportunity to vote by absentee ballot or at the polls, how can we really cheer the primary turnout the “highest in decades” at a mere 21.5 percent? As a democratic nation and progressive state, we should have closer to 100 percent participation in all our votes. The major votes were split 65 percent Democrat and 35 percent Republican, but both parties reflect an apathy attitude of 78.5 percent nonparticipants.
Assuming the overall state is roughly 50-50 split by major party, the greatest turnout for the Nov. 6 election is essential to truly reflect a majority representation. An issue-focused debate, free of the usual irritating attack-ad freak show banter, could allow informed votes for the future course of Minnesota and America. Please vote.
Michael Tillemans, Minneapolis
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As I voted in the primary election today, I was faced with four contested races with five or more candidates in each race. From my point of view, there were more than one very good candidate in two of these races. Most important in my mind is having a candidate acceptable to me win the primary, not necessarily which one. Ranked choice would help ensure that would happen.
Carolyn Keith, Lino Lakes
Through reporting and response, we have a better understanding
My sincere thanks to the Star Tribune and Mike Sauro. The First Amendment is alive and well. You’ve demonstrated how opposing views can be correct.
In the case of rape victims, both sides want to see an improvement in how things are handled in what can only be described as a horrific life event. They differ in how the problem is defined, however. The Star Tribune investigative team (“Denied Justice,” July 22 and 26 and Aug. 12) paints the police as the source of the problem and where things need to change. A tougher approach. Tackle every case with full resources. Enter Mike Sauro (“Rape series misrepresented investigative process,” counterpoint, Aug. 14). Mike claims and points out that police resources are limited. Why direct these resources (tackle) when there’s little or no chance of a successful prosecution?
Lesson learned: Collaboration moves the needle in the right direction. Both sides need to work together. The end result is progress. Lose your power/authority persona, and voilà. Life improves. For lots of folks.
Steve Ettel, Golden Valley
Writer takes a generous view of a dangerous person
Brandon Ferdig characterizes Alex Jones as an independent voice under attack by the political left (“What fueled his rise is part of his predicament,” Aug. 11). He makes some passing references to Jones’ inaccurate stories, and says he treats immigrants “sometimes distastefully.” The fact is, Jones’ InfoWars.com is a fountain of falsehoods and vitriol that causes real harm to innocent people. To complain that some cadre of liberal elites have “labeled Jones as ‘other’ ” is the height of hypocrisy. Jones’ entire business model is turning people into targets. There is no equivalence between calling Jones out on his inflammatory lies and bigotry.
What’s more, his current predicament is not censorship. YouTube, Facebook and other private-media enterprises are simply heeding the voices of their outraged customers, who recognize Jones as a dangerous propagandist. In other words, it’s the free market at work.
Neal Skorpen, Minneapolis
His firing was warranted for the sake of our elections
This is not to defend the Donald Trump presidency but to reinforce the electoral process.
The firing of FBI agent Peter Strzok needed to happen, as did the dismissals of James Comey, Andrew McCabe and Lisa Page. Strzok was the point person in the mishandling of the Hillary Clinton e-mail investigation. He also was a key part of the ongoing Russia investigation. The political bias that was apparent in the Strzok/Page e-mails and texts displayed the agenda and the “tone at the top” of the FBI and Justice Department. The attempts to pave the way for a Clinton presidency and derail the Trump campaign with an “insurance policy” (i.e., Russia investigation) were meant to disenfranchise those voters who did not cast their ballots for Clinton. The arrogance, self-righteousness, narcissism, etc., of top-level FBI and Justice Department officers could fill a swamp.
Like it or not, Donald Trump is the president. Duly elected. The country has paid/is paying a great price for the ongoing unwillingness to respect the November 2016 election result. It’s time for the politicians to act as statesmen and remember who they are working for — not themselves, not their parties, but the citizens.
John P. Sherack, Thief River Falls, Minn.
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The FBI firing of Peter Strzok for texting something critical of Trump, regardless of his role in the Trump/Russia investigation, in my opinion, is a shame. If everyone who texted or e-mailed or said out loud something critical of Trump was fired, we would have unemployment at levels so high that the world would not be able to function.
Clare Michlin, Golden Valley
WHITE BEAR LAKE
Not so peachy for everyone with a stake in water management
A caution to the readers of the Aug. 13 front-page article “Once again, life is a beach in White Bear Lake” is called for. This article was incomplete! It likely represented quite well the beliefs and concerns of those who live on or have businesses on the lake. It fails to include the concerns of others who face the huge costs of augmentation and the loss of their gardens and lawns due to total residential watering bans. These bans exempted businesses, golf courses and other nonresidential areas with no evidence that residential watering of yards was a significant cause of low lake levels. All residents of the area are very concerned about the lake levels — don’t get me wrong! But more careful logical planning is needed based on fact and the interests of all parties affected.
Caroline Kostroski, White Bear Lake
Community ownership: A few hundred each, and they’re ours
We are not Minnesota Twins fans and don’t have $50,000 to spare, but we are Minneapolis residents and would gladly contribute to Aug. 15 letter writer Jonathan Hegre’s plan to have community members buy out the Twins. Forbes estimates the value of the Twins at $1.15 billion. This means it would take around 23,000 people to donate at Hegre’s $50,000 level to buy out the Twins. Minnesota’s population is just over 5.5 million. If every Minnesotan chipped in, it’d take around $209 per person. If Hegre is serious about this and sets up a nonprofit, we’d gladly send our check for $418 tomorrow, and we’d even chip in for a person or two who doesn’t have a couple hundred bucks to spare. We’d rather be a sunny Green Bay than a cold Omaha.
Hillis and Matthew Byrnes, Minneapolis