The following excerpts are from Star Tribune opinion articles ranked by highest online readership this year. To read them in their entirety, go to startribune.com/opinion and use the embedded links.
1. “Open letter from Kentucky to people of Minnesota, about those Eagles fans,” by Craig Robertson, an attorney from Lexington, Ky.
After the Vikings beat the Saints, my father and I decided to go to Philadelphia the following week for the NFC Championship Game. It turned out to be one of the biggest mistakes I have ever made — and it had nothing to do with the outcome of the game.
2. “Undisciplined: Chaos may be coming to Minnesota classrooms, by decree,” by Katherine Kersten, a senior policy fellow at the Center of the American Experiment.
Brace yourself, parents of Minnesota. Here’s what’s coming soon to a school near you: increased violence, brazen challenges to teachers’ authority and a chaotic environment where learning is an uphill battle.
3. “Kavanaugh and Ellison: What’s the difference between their cases?” by Lynnell Mickelsen, a Minneapolis writer.
The ads start with the standard scary background music, followed by a shot of a grim-faced U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison. Then the classic Scary Ad Lady Voice announces “Disturbing allegations of domestic violence … ”
4. “Our chaotic culture: Blame it on ’68,” by Stephen B. Young, of St. Paul, the global executive director of the Caux Round Table.
The young new year is a suitable occasion to recall the ways Americans began to come apart exactly 50 years ago.
5. “Minnesota’s marijuana moment: Why to legalize, by someone who doesn’t inhale,” by Paul John Scott, a writer in Rochester.
I don’t write any of the following out of the reason we tend to suspect a person calls for legalization — you know, because the writer is into weed. It’s just that weed is already here, as if that really needed to be said, and has survived the ultimate multigenerational field test.
6. “Does CTE call for an end to youth tackle football?” by 26 brain injury experts in neurosurgery, neuropsychology, neurology, neuropathology and public policy.
The scientific evidence linking youth casual sports play to brain injury, brain injury to CTE, and CTE to dementia is not strong. We believe that further scientific research and data are necessary for accurate risk-benefit analysis among policymakers for two reasons.
7. “Mosaic’s departure is a wake-up call for Minnesota,” by Fritz Corrigan, a retired CEO of Mosaic.
Wake up, Star Tribune and Minnesota. Something is happening here! Consider this a sign of things to come, unless things change. Now, and dramatically. Get competitive or expect more Mosaics and snowbirds to leave.
8. “The great siphoning: Drought-stricken areas eye the Great Lakes,” by Ron Way of Edina.
To desert dwellers, an idea that makes intuitive sense is to pipe Lake Superior water to where it’s “needed.” Such a project would be staggeringly expensive but technically doable; besides, the Great Lakes surely wouldn’t miss, say, 50 billion gallons — would they?
9. “2018 election: Paulsen strikes at more than his opponent with outrageous ad,” by multiple members of the Twin Cities business and volunteer communities.
Last week, our community was witness to something that we believe is unprecedented in the annals of Minnesota political campaigns.
10. “Two flawed candidates, no endorsement in state AG’s race,” by the Star Tribune Editorial Board.
The “least-bad” choice facing voters, along with the Editorial Board’s lack of endorsement, should spur introspection by both political parties as a major transition looms in the Attorney General’s Office.
11. “Star Tribune endorsement for governor in DFL primary: Tim Walz,” by the Star Tribune Editorial Board.
Minnesota needs the next four years of state lawmaking to be less prone to partisan gridlock than the past four years have been. More than that, this state needs a leader who can bring Minnesotans together.
12. “University of Minnesota pronoun policy should not be enacted,” by Ian Smith, a member of the U’s Student Senate.
I will always stand against discriminatory acts that are perpetrated at this university, but for students not to speak the words the university wants them to say is just not discriminatory.
13. “Trump should be impeached,” by New York Times columnist Bret Stephens.
The Constitution’s standard for impeachment is “Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” The standard is now met.
14. “Trump’s unsettling presidential visit to Duluth,” by the Star Tribune Editorial Board.
President Donald Trump came to Duluth and brought with him the potent mix of hubris, divisiveness and victimhood that has come to mark his rallies, energizing his supporters and appalling his opponents.
15. “Sweeping lawsuit would create a general mess,” by Katherine Kersten, a senior policy fellow at the Center of the American Experiment.
On July 25, the Minnesota Supreme Court issued a ruling with far-reaching and troubling consequences for K-12 education in our state.
16. “On receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom: It is an honor, but it’s not really about me,” by retired Minnesota Supreme Court Justice and NFL great Alan Page.
When I look at the list of the medal’s previous recipients, I ask myself, how did my name come to be included with icons of the civil rights movement like Rosa Parks or people like Dr. Robert Coles, who spent his life documenting the effects of poverty on children?
17. “Sack cartoon: Minnesota Vikings,” by Star Tribune editorial cartoonist Steve Sack.
18. “What churches get wrong (and how to repopulate them),” by Ron Way of Edina.
Churches need not become overtly political, but they must become relevant to today’s realities, and in the process regain diminished moral authority.