Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey's Twitter comment on Bob Kroll's announcement that he is retiring as Minneapolis Police Federation president — "Good riddance" — is a perfect example of the sorry state of our politics today ("Mpls. police union head to retire on Jan. 31," front page, Jan. 12). He could have said, "Mr. Kroll and I have had many differences of opinion in the past, but I respect his work on behalf of his fellow police officers and wish him well in his retirement."
After all, Kroll is an elected representative and his duty is to work on behalf of his constituents, who have a labor union contract with the city. Frey may not like the contract, but the fact is that the city signed the contract. Kroll cannot be blamed for that.
Mayor Frey, while he claims he is working with the union to make improvements in the next contract, has chosen to demonize Kroll and, by inference, the entire police force — a clear demonstration of his hatred and contempt for anyone who may have a different viewpoint than he does. If he continues to think and act this way, there is probably little chance of him bringing people together to solve the city's many social problems.
Armand Peterson, Maple Grove
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Kroll's retirement from the Minneapolis Police Department and his leadership role in the police union is great news as Minneapolis seeks to move forward with a more just and equitable approach to law enforcement. He has been an incendiary figure and an embarrassment to the citizens of Minneapolis.
Julia Lofness, Minnetonka
If you know the answer, stop asking
My first reactions after reading Tuesday's front-page article "Walz scolds Republicans for 'epic gaslighting' " were sadness and embarrassment. How sad and embarrassing that the governor's son had to be whisked to safety because of possible mob violence. But then, my reaction turned to anger — not directed at those who would stoop to vigilante violence, but to the Republican leadership that stokes this behavior. Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka is quoted as saying, "There's nothing wrong with asking questions ... ." Wrong, Sen. Gazelka. There is something wrong with asking questions when all the questions have been properly addressed and answered by authorities. This is an abrogation of leadership. Leaders need to know the consequences of asking questions that sow doubt in the minds of their followers. Children — let alone a governor's child — shouldn't have to be removed to a safe location because some irresponsible leaders continue to stoke the fires of anger by asking questions that have been answered over and over again.
What if, when thorough, independent investigation of the shooting of Dolal Idd by Minneapolis police reveals that indeed the officers fulfilled their duty, and that this tragic intervention by law enforcement was justified, Black Lives Matter leaders continue to question the outcome of this inquiry? What if continued doubt leads to angry riots by those who insist that the shooting was unjustified? What if Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo's family has to be whisked to safety because of threats? Will the Republican leadership respond by saying, "There's nothing wrong with asking questions ..."?
Richard Masur, Minneapolis
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In the article "Walz scolds Republicans for 'epic gaslighting,' " Rep. Kurt Daudt is said to be having concerns over election fraud and believing that "state leaders need to listen to why people feel the election wasn't fair and put measures in place to build their confidence in the system."
I'd like to remind Rep. Daudt that if he or anyone else "feels" there is fraud, they are welcome to identify specific instances and bring evidence of this fraud to a judge.
Just because you believe there are ghosts under the bed does not mean we all have to sleep with the light on and hire an exorcist — just in case.
It's like putting a hot tub on your deck: You may "feel" like you need another support beam because of some disaster story on the web, but engineers have done the math and building codes can tell you exactly how many beams you need given the size and material. The same mathematical tools can tell you if there are voting irregularities that represent anything close to meaningful fraud. You do not have to triple-check every single person, and you should not assume that any one instance of fraud means that everyone is doing it and we just cannot see it.
If you really want to remove the fear that people are feeling, put more money into public education. More knowledge equals less fear, and less money wasted on needless deck beams.
Kevin Kohrt, Plymouth
You haven't given this much thought, have you?
For those politicians who have chosen to support or remain silent concerning the insurrection resulting from the misinformation perpetrated by our current president, I have some questions:
Do you realize that our government is in a precarious crossroads?
Do you feel the anarchists protesting the election on these false pretenses have the ability to create a new and just government "for the people"?
Are you aware that if our government is destroyed, your ambition for higher office is moot?
Susan Nicholas, Roseville
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"Don Quixote" tells the story of a delusional man who causes harm and destruction on his quest for self-aggrandizement. His sidekick, the naive and loyal follower Sancho Panza, accompanies him on his misguided journey.
There are many parallels between these characters and the relationship President Donald Trump has with his enablers (adviser Stephen Miller, Vice President Mike Pence, lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Sens. Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Graham, Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley, among others).
And a common theme running through both the book and today's similarly behaving characters is this:
Who is more insane? The delusional one, or those who follow him?
Marie Sullivan, Edina
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Regarding the Jan. 10 headline "A nation left violated: America forced to face threat from within": The Capitol assault was awful, put down quickly and rioters are being arrested. Where was that headline and story during the June-to-November street violence? Media and Democrats — while quick to blame Trump for everything — were slow, if at all, to condemn BLM and antifa rioters across the nation, including in Minneapolis. Your bias continues to be so outrageous.
Arne Skaalure, Plymouth
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Watching the emerging video of the invasion of the U.S. Capitol last week, it looks disturbingly like the rioting we lived through in the Twin Cities this past summer with two notable exceptions: 1) There were no peaceful demonstrators in Washington providing an unintended cover for the destruction caused by the miscreants who trashed our city, and 2) the domestic terrorists in Washington were predominantly white men, not a community who, for the most part, protested a man's apparent killing by a police officer.
Paul Mellblom, Minneapolis
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A Jan. 12 letter to the editor stated: "The line of defense of our laws and norms has been slowly eroded in recent years. ... It is time to make it clear that no one is above the law." The writer calls for bold and unwavering action. I certainly agree that the recent right-wing insurrection needs a bold response. At the same time we need to look at all lawlessness broadly in our society. Over the last several years protesters have blocked Interstates 35 and 94 in Minneapolis and taken over the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue. Generally the authorities have not reacted forcefully against these dangerous and lawless acts. Our society needs to take a strong stance against all lawlessness and violence regardless of the source.
Dennis West, Minneapolis
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