Dear Santa,

As you know, I haven’t written to ask you for something in a long, long time. Over the years I’ve been blessed with all that I want or need, including a beautiful grandchild and another on the way. They are the reason I’m writing now. There is something I want for them, something they truly need — a healthy, livable planet. I think you are uniquely positioned to help bring this about.

Please drop a copy of the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (U.S. House Rule 763) down every chimney tonight, along with the recent Columbia University study showing that the bill is a great climate change solution. On Christmas morning, folks can read about how this policy would drastically reduce CO2 output, create millions of new jobs, boost the economy and not grow government.

Also, as you head back to the North Pole, please sprinkle some magic elf dust over the whole world in order to transform humanity’s perception of nature. They’ll simply wake up knowing that the world outside their door is not a resource to be plundered but a living creation to be lovingly tended. Thanks, Santa. I know you’ve got this.

(P.S. I left you a glass of Grammy’s Special Egg Nog. Cheers!)

Laurel Regan, Apple Valley


What about sanctuary cities for the Declaration of Independence?

In response to the people pushing for Second Amendment sanctuary cities (“2nd Amendment sanctuary push aims to defy gun laws,” Dec. 22), I suggest we also create sanctuary cities that uphold the Declaration of Independence. In these cities we would be guaranteed our inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I would have the right to not be shot, and my grandchildren would have the right to grow up free from fear of gun violence.

Most gun violence prevention measures are aimed at making us all safer. Research shows that it’s possible to reduce gun violence with sensible legislation. Why don’t gun rights advocates seem to care about the rights of others to be safer and live with less fear? Is the daily carnage of gun deaths the price the rest of us pay for their “right” to own assault weapons?

America will be great again when the common good matters to everyone. We can be better than this.

Jill Nelson, Minneapolis

• • •

The First Amendment doesn’t protect someone who yells “fire” in a crowded theater, since that constitutes a clear and present danger to the public. Why, then, is the Second Amendment so sacrosanct that no limits should be allowed, ever?

Those men in the photo, pledging their allegiance and declaring that Buckingham, Va., should be a Second Amendment sanctuary, are worried that any regulation of firearms would be a “slippery slope” leading to the banning of all firearms. I question if they have ever heard even the most liberal, radical, leftist, elitist, snowflakiest socialist in all of Virginia advocate the banning of firearms. Yet, they hold on to the notion that any discussion of banning military assault rifles like those that killed 58 people and wounded another 850 at a concert in Las Vegas in a span of 10 minutes is somehow going to lead to the banning of all guns. They wouldn’t be able to protect their family. They couldn’t shoot a deer. They could no longer blast beer cans off fence posts.

Have they ever considered that if everyone owns a firearm, it makes owning a firearm a little less useful? Or does that justify the need for more firearms, and bigger ones, in case a mob comes to their door? Mobs at the door must be a frequent occurrence in some circles.

Some people and some weapons present a clear and present danger to the public. Regulations that protect the rest of us from dangerous people and mass killings aren’t ever going to prevent those guys from shooting beer cans off their fence posts. The odds are those regulations would be more likely to save their lives than any gun would.

Mary Alice Divine, White Bear Lake

• • •

I woke up Sunday morning knowing it was three days before Christmas. Then I logged on to my computer to start my day like most others. Then the headlines began rolling in. Seven people shot in Baltimore ... seven people shot in Spring Lake Park ... 11 more in Chicago. There were probably hundreds more shootings the previous night that won’t make the news because there weren’t multiple victims. Then I wondered how many more firearms will be under the tree this holiday season? Or how many gift cards that people will use to help in their purchase of one or more. There are more guns than people in this nation of ours. There are, by far, more shooting deaths in this country than any other on the planet. So merry Christmas, I guess? Happy holidays, maybe?

Kent Smith, Minneapolis


He stained his legacy by voting against impeachment

Regarding the Dec. 22 article “Peterson bucks party; will it matter?”:

Of course it matters. U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson took a solemn oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States.” He violated that oath when he voted against the articles of impeachment on Dec. 18. For the rest of his life, like President Donald Trump and the Republicans, this horrible stain will be part of his legacy.

Jim Janis, Golden Valley

• • •

Some feel that the western Minnesota congressman Peterson should be excused for his “no” vote on impeachment, simply because he is in a very red district (“Peterson splits from party on vote,” Dec. 19). But that is the same lame excuse otherwise moral Republicans are using to support the current scoundrel-in-chief. I prefer someone who has an ounce of ethical fiber.

Note: Just this calendar year, the representative voted against keeping Pentagon spending to last year’s level (HR459), against limiting ground operations against Iran (HR2354), against a climate action plan (HR9), against the “forever-wars” 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (HR643), no to background checks for gun purchases (HR8) and in favor of continuing arms sales and intel-sharing in Saudi Arabia’s genocide against Yemen (HR643). Clearly, he has joined the worst that the D.C. swamp has to offer and should be removed. It doesn’t really matter if he has a “D” or an “R” after his name. He is part of the problem, not the solution.

Charles Underwood, Minneapolis


Don’t overlook the U women’s hockey program

Jim Souhan, shame on you for not recognizing the Gophers women’s hockey program in your Dec. 20 column, “Truly golden time for Gophers sport teams.” Please explain how you can overlook a program that has been a beacon of success and a pride of the university and the athletic department from the day the program entered the college women’s hockey ranks. Not only have they won numerous WCHA titles and NCAA national championships, the program has produced many outstanding student-athletes. The athletes have excelled in the classroom, in the community and on the ice both at the college level and on the international level. In my opinion, you owe the coaches, staff, players past, present and future, a huge apology for this oversight. Your failure to recognize the obvious makes one wonder if you truly know what’s going on over in Dinkytown.

John Moorhead, Naples, Fla.

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