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As a grandmother of a newborn, bottle-fed baby, I am appalled at the response of the current administration concerning the formula shortage ("Abbott to restart formula production," May 17). President Joe Biden's response to the question whether his administration should have reacted more quickly was, "If we'd been better mind readers, I guess we could have." This sarcastic answer is most concerning, especially since the severity of the shortage was raised in February by Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York.

Does it take three months for this administration to act on the ability to feed our infants?

Tamara Rath, Eden Prairie


Reality is nowhere is totally safe

A letter writer on Tuesday ("Not-so-simple safety tips") listed some of the myriad variables attendant to gun violence, a sobering list. There are innumerable other variables, too, those of the shooter(s), and both these lists expand with each new incident. Taken together, this universe of variables is impossible to reduce to any formula or model by which the next incident could be predicted and then prevented. However, there is one constant always present: the gun. Deal with the obvious or live with Tuesday's letter writer's tip list.

Steven Boyer, St. Paul


A letter to the editor on Wednesday dragged out the old idea that guns don't kill people, people kill people. That statement is accurate. It is also accurate that assault weapons kill people a lot faster than single-shot weapons, which brings me to my point. The current conservative Supreme Court touts a philosophy of "originalist" interpretations of the Constitution. That is, to properly interpret the Constitution we must view it as the founders' thought at the time. Since the Second Amendment was ratified in 1791, the founders must have been thinking of the musket at the time, the current Supreme Court should welcome this interpretation and outlaw any guns developed since that time. Gun manufactures will welcome this as gun advocates replace assault weapons with muskets — sales boom. Given the time it takes to reload a musket, gun deaths will drop to almost nothing. A win-win for everyone. All we need is someone to bring the case forward and the current Supreme Court will rush to a favorable judgment!

John Jackson, Bloomington


As a proponent of reasonable gun regulation, I found agreement with a letter writer who argues that guns are not at fault (Readers Write, May 18). He rightly points out that "[a] loaded firearm can sit on a table for 50 years and never hurt anyone." But then he succinctly made one of my counterarguments in the next sentence: "[I]t takes an irresponsible person to harm someone." We agree on this point also. We will never be able to regulate irresponsible human behavior, so let's at least reduce the rate of harm from the irresponsibly chosen instrument. This is what we do for motor vehicles, and yes, we still have too many tragic car fatalities caused by irresponsible people, but there are very few horrific mass casualty events on our roadways. The Second Amendment stipulates a well-regulated militia as the purpose for guaranteeing the right to own a weapon. We now have exactly the opposite of that, and we should be able to lawfully restore some balance without harming the rights of responsible gun owners.

Bob Worrall, Roseville


A writer stated a loaded gun could be left on a table for 50 years and it wouldn't hurt anyone. Sounds like another version of the idea that guns don't kill people, people do.

The reality of the whole argument is that if Payton Gendron had had a knife, a baseball bat, a hammer or anything besides a gun there would not be 10 families grieving in Buffalo for the past several days. He may have harmed some people, maybe even killed someone, but highly unlikely that it would have been 10 people.

People kill people, and people with guns often kill many more people, be they responsible people or irresponsible people!

Jay Jaffee, St. Louis Park


Don't accept declining student enrollment so easily, Minneapolis

There are approximately 20,000 school-aged children who live in Minneapolis but do not attend Minneapolis Public Schools. Depending on the status of those children, each of them could bring back up to approximately $20,000 of revenue to the district. That calculates to approximately $400 million. Obviously, not all of those children could be recruited back to the district.

No overt concerted effort is being made nor has it been made over the past several years to recruit these students back to the district. Current student placement plans have motivated many parents to seek alternative enrollment opportunities for their children, therefore significantly decreasing district enrollment and revenue.

Rather than having central office administrators cast an enrollment plan, it is much more logical to query and involve parents, teachers and community leaders. The outgoing superintendent was not held accountable for increasing enrollment. Just planning on how to cut expenses to balance a budget is not the answer.

Mitchell David Trockman, Golden Valley

The writer is a retired former Minneapolis Public Schools associate superintendent and interim superintendent.


The Star Tribune, I believe, correctly lays out the Minnesota Republican Party's education priorities for our kids ("Session's last week has long agenda," May 16). What it doesn't state directly is that the $30 million Republicans propose is around one-tenth of 1% of total expenditures on K-12 education. That's disgraceful, especially in light of their February proposal for $8.5 billion in permanent tax cuts. They want 283 times more in tax cuts than on literacy? Much of the tax cuts is directed toward themselves and their wealthy supporters.

Republicans do support some other small increases in education, but those increases don't begin to even cover inflation. Let's be clear that when Republicans talk about "parental rights," they are not talking about the rights of parents or taxpayers to have our students learn basic literacy, critical thinking skills or understanding the responsibilities of good citizenship. Republicans are talking about the rights of the most vociferous to dominate the debate. They are talking about using our children's education to divide us and trying to create a phony wedge issue they believe can be turned to their political advantage.

Minnesotans will not be fooled or divided by this Republican canard. Minnesotans support our teachers, our administrators, our parents and, most importantly, our children's right to a high-quality public education.

Philip Friedman, Roseville