I live downtown and work in Loring Park. I’m voicing my concern about a plan by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board to use AquaNeat — a Monsanto product whose chemical composition is known in other localities as Roundup — to control cattails in Loring Park.
I think the use of that chemical to control cattails will greatly diminish our quality of life in the Loring Park area and beyond.
Everyone who grew up in Iowa, as I did, heard the commercials for Roundup and came to view it as an innocuous fluid that protected our crops with no harmful effects on us humans or the environment. But that was also an era when “four out of five doctors” recommended Winston cigarettes and breakfast was a mound of butter-fried bacon with biscuits and gravy.
Aquaneat is certainly legal, but is it the right thing to do? Our aquifers are growing more and more contaminated as we increase our use of herbicides and pesticides. Since our waterways are linked, a Loring Park herbicide will surely find its way into other bodies of water.
This use strikes me as a case of the end (fewer cattails) justifying the means (poisoning the environment). There are far too many nonchemical means to mitigate the growth. As a newspaper publisher (One Nation News) who’s concerned about our community, I’d favor manual removal by unemployed youths of color as a way to address two needs at once.
The Park Board attempted cattail removal about a decade ago, and here we are revisiting their issue. Cattails are hardy, so I can understand why the board thinks it would be better to chemically kill them.
But legal doesn’t mean safe. Efficient doesn’t mean safe. Roundup has been linked to cancer in some studies. In fact, the World Health Organization said that its active ingredient, glyphosate, was “classified as probably carcinogenic to humans.”
I sincerely urge the Park Board to reconsider using the herbicide. We have Emerson school nearby and a number of businesses and apartment buildings, as well as dozens upon dozens of events (Pride, Loring Park Art Festival, Tour de Fat, Movies in the Park, etc.) that represent tens of thousands of people who will be affected by the board’s decision.
Jae Bryson, Minneapolis
Some win, which means that others lose; that’s not fair
After reading that airplane noise is being shared (“We hear it’s gotten so much worse. Not true where I live,” Readers Write, Sept. 3), we needed to comment that it is certainly not true where we live between the northern end of Lake Harriet and Lake Calhoun in Linden Hills. We have two screened porches and a vine-covered upper-level deck, and we like the windows open in the summer months. We do not live near the airport, but rather in a straight line extended outward from the northern parallel runway, 12L. If the wind is out of the southeast, which is the norm for warm summer months, it means there is continuous airplane noise for arrival flights, sometimes every minute. The frequency of landing arrivals is so great that it is seldom quiet without any noise, with planes heading to runway 12R also being heard, sometimes at the same time. Very often we are forced inside when the weather is beautiful. The pattern starts around 5:45 a.m.
In the past, these landing flight patterns were varied so that the noise could be distributed over more area, thus relieving noise stress on our path for a time. This can be a very gradual change, by adjusting the angle of approach slightly, which offsets the landing flight path out of noise range for us and others. After talking with a Metropolitan Airports Commission noise-mitigation spokesperson, I was told that the constant unbreakable pattern was dictated by a controller sending a signal to landing aircraft and the increased frequency of flights demanded that this be unchanged. I mentioned that this was not true in years before.
Because those in line with the runways are the “losers,” others become the winners. We would hope that when consideration is given to noise mitigation, that arrival flight pattern variations would be considered. The constant noise greatly affects our quality of life.
Daryl and Kathryn Hansen, Minneapolis
• • •
A Sept. 2 letter writer called for scientific studies showing the impact of airport noise on health. Such studies were conducted in the 1990s, by scientists at Cornell University and at the University of California, Irvine.
The studies measured the effect of airport noise on elementary-school-aged children living near the airports in Munich, Germany, and Los Angeles.
The studies concluded that chronic exposure to noise elevated stress hormones and blood pressure; also, that noise affected reading, problem-solving and comprehension of difficult materials.
When the Munich airport closed, the children recovered their deficiencies in memory and reading two years later. Children living near the new airport, however, were developing cognitive problems.
These studies added ammunition to the citizens of Orange County, Calif., when they voted on a ballot initiative that defeated the proposal to convert the Marine Air Station at El Toro into a busy international airport.
Hanna Hill, Plymouth
Introducing my reports on her scandalous behavior
I am planning to write two books about Hillary Clinton. The first will be titled “The Scandals of Hillary Clinton.” It will cover the continuous news media frenzy of the five-year Whitewater investigation, the death of Vince Foster, her e-mail server, the 2½-year investigation of Benghazi and dozens of other Hillary “scandals.” It will be an exhaustive study of the rumors, questions, innuendo, gossip, lies, half-truths, outrages and distortions of Hillary Clinton’s service to America. The book will be 400,000 pages long and could be consumed by a fast reader in 55 years.
The second book will be titled “Evidence of Hillary Clinton Wrongdoing.” It will contain all of the proof, evidence, facts and documentation that have been accumulated to establish the guilt of Hillary Clinton. The book will contain a hard cover, a single page and a back cover. The single page will simply state: “In America, a person is innocent until proven guilty.”
This book will take but a moment to read, but it should be all that an honest person needs to know in this great country of ours.
Tom Hammond, Woodbury
They should stay and fight
Why are thousands of able-bodied Syrian men applying for asylum in Europe, instead of staying in Syria and fighting the tyrants and terrorists that are making their country unlivable? The West has liberty and some prosperity because generations of its citizens have been willing to lay down their lives to win and defend their freedom. Yet, Syrians would be happy to have Americans lose their lives marching into Syria to save them. Any Syrian men between 18 and 30 showing up in Europe for asylum should be given military training and guns and be sent back to fight with the Free Syrian Army. Give the women, children and old men temporary asylum under the agreement that if the young men go AWOL, their families will be sent back, too. If they die, their families get permanent citizenship. Liberty requires sacrifice.
Shea Hansen, Minneapolis