Each week, Patch users contribute numerous insights, opinions and observations. The following is a collection of the most thoughtful, moving, controversial or just plain funny comments that appeared on Patch sites in Eden Prairie, Edina, Golden Valley, Hopkins, Minnetonka, Richfield, Shakopee, Plymouth, St. Louis Park and St. Michael. Click on the headline to read the full story and join in the conversation.
(The comments below are not meant to reflect the opinions of Patch or its staff.)
Letter: 'I'm Disgusted By Negative Campaigning'
To the Editor: Are you as disgusted as I by negative campaigning? Almost everyone I speak with is! Voters want to hear solutions from candidates, not negative comments about opponents. I have never registered with a party and am proud that in my long voting history, I have voted for candidates not parties. I do my homework and choose candidates who represent my beliefs. In this campaign season, I have been appalled by the negativity demonstrated in the state races.
Others disagreed. David doesn't think the negativity is all that bad:
If Irene thinks the campaign content this year is terrible, it's fortunate for her she can't remember any other campaign. The 'negativity' has been FAR worse in previous campaigns in our nation's history with personal attacks against candidates, their spouses and their families, etc.
Deciding who will serve us in government is the most important duty we have as citizens. If you can't stand the heat of citizenship, then it's time for you to turn in your passport and go..... oh, that's right. It's the same EVERYWHERE. Nevermind.
Feds Put Southwest LRT on the Fast Track
President Barack Obama is apparently a supporter of expanded light rail in the Twin Cities area. The Obama Administration announced Monday that the Southwest Light Rail project is one of two projects in the country that will be expedited due to the "We Can't Wait" initiative.
Carol was happy to hear the news, but she also offered some advice to LRT planners:
I am very glad to hear the line is still moving ahead, though I have reservations about how many stops are planned for the LRT Southwest line. I think each outlying suburb should have only one stop each except for maybe EP which is kind of spread out. The goal should be that the line is better, faster, and cheaper than driving in your own car. Every station/stop you add, adds costs and prolongs the total travel time to downtown (Minneapolis).
Carole Rydberg spoke out about the voter ID amendment discussion:
I recall seeing a letter to the editor from a man who mentioned that his neighbor had moved and, therefore, nothing would stop him from going into the polls and saying that he is that neighbor and voting in his place. Folks seem to forget that most of the precinct judges live in the neighborhood where they serve and one may say, "You are not Jim Jones ... I know Jim Jones ... and you have just committed a felony!" That may be why there have been no known cases of anyone trying to vote by pretending to be another person.
Should Bonfires Be Banned Over Health Concerns?
A local group is fighting to ban outdoor recreational wood fires in Edina over what they claim is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Take Back the Air has hired attorney Gale Mellum to petition the City of Edina to ban bonfires. In a letter addressed to the City Council and other Edina officials, Mellum argued wood burning at public events "presents an accessibility issue for children and anyone with breathing issues and other disabilities."
Reader Judy Sappington was appalled by the proposed ban:
What is wrong with this world when a friendly, nurturing, inviting bonfire has to be banned? Would like to have statistics on how many new friends have been made; difficulties solved; personal problems shared; future plans made; loved ones sharing memories; children sharing a wonderful family tradition; songs learned and sung; fragrance of burning leaves and wood shared by others in the area; inventions which have resulted by friendly bonfire discussions; prayers which can be so meaningful in this atmosphere of the dark skies lit only by the bright and warm fire. SAVE THE BONFIRES!
Meanwhile, user Edina Resident feared the slippery slope banning bonfires might create:
What's next, BBQ's?! Are they going to PAY for the gas firepits and monthly gas bills?
Time to Move Forward on Bottineau Transitway
In a letter to the editor this week, Rep. Ryan Winkler, Rep. Lyndon Carlson and Sen. Ann Rest asked the Golden Valley City Council to get on board with plans for the Bottineau Transitway. User and blogger Andrea Wiley agreed:
Golden Valley needs to reexamine their resolution of support for the transitway and vote to support examining all the options!!
Shakopee City Council To Tackle Marriage Amendment Resolutions
The city council received three resolutions on the marriage amendment. The resolutions asked the city to oppose the amendment, support it, or take no action on it. Some believed that discussion on the marriage amendment did not belong at a city council meeting.
Terence Aloysius Mahoney disagreed:
I'm very impressed with the leadership demonstrated by Mayor Tabke. This is not an easy issue for many people but the Mayor doesn't run and hide but asks all to weigh in at the City Council meeting. He's right, city government is the most intimate form of government and the most accessible to citizens. It's appropriate to have this discussion. My personal view is to encourage the city council to adopt a resolution against the proposed amendment. In my opinion, it is very inappropriate to change our state constitution to deprive a group of citizens the same rights enjoyed by other citizens. There must be a higher standard of good sound public policy to change our state constitution.
(AUDIO) Franken on Southwest LRT: ‘It Should Happen’
U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) is optimistic the Southwest Light Rail Transit project will be completed, but he said Minnesotans still need to show their support.
Daryl Fryxell disagreed:
Franken is in dreamland. This is another ridiculously wasteful idea for spending our tax dollars. Light rail has failed every where it is tried. Very few will ride it and those that are unwilling to pay the true cost of the fare, thus requiring taxpayers to subsidize forever.
Stop the delusions and cancel this nonsense NOW.