Star Tribune publishes second anti-transgender ad

The Minnesota Child Protection League is at it again. The anti-LGBTQ organization paid for a second full-page anti-transgender ad in the Star Tribune’s Sunday paper this week. The ad comes as the Minnesota State High School League reconsiders this week whether or not to allow transgender high school students to participate in athletics based on their gender identity.“The end of girls’ sports?” reads the ad in bold letters at the top. “Her dreams of a scholarship shattered, your 14-year-old daughter just lost her position on an all-girl team to a male … and now she may have to shower with him. Are you willing to let that happen?”The MPCL published an anti-transgender ad in the Star Tribune last September, just before an October vote by MSHSL to allow transgender students to play sports based on their gender identity.However, MSHSL decided to table that decision because of significant pressure from opposition, and postponed the vote until Dec. Continue Reading

OPINION | MN Child Protection League continues its assault on LGBT community

The MN Child Protection League Action PAC [CPLActionPAC] issued an action alert to their current followers concerning the Transgender Athletic Policy coming up for a vote on December 4, 2014. They claim that the Minnesota State High School League [MSHSL] is not listening to “you” and have urged their members to call the MSHSL and regurgitate their tired talking points to oppose the policy.The alert continues to state, “They [children] should not be used as tools of aggressive special interest groups with dangerous agendas that will harm children.” Based on their past lobbying efforts, this appears to be what the CPLActionPAC is, an aggressive special interest group putting our children in harms way, particularly those in the LGBT community.On September 26th, 2014 the CPLActionPAC in MN spent approximately $37,000.00 on a full page ad in the Sunday Sports section of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. The headline blared “A male wants to shower beside your 14-year old daughter…Are you OK with that?” and intentionally created a controversial debate in Minnesota concerning transgender student athletes competing in K-12 sports and urged the public to attend the October 1st meeting to oppose the new policy of inclusion.Executive Direct, David Stead of the Minnesota State High School League [MSHSL] stated that the current policy draft was constructed borrowing the best practices from the 32 states that have already past a similar policy regarding transgender student athletes. The policy is an inclusive document that basically allows transgender athletes to participate in sports while their privacy is protected. Although the ad was debunked line-by-line, there were 55 people signed up to speak, but due to time constraints, approximately 40 made it to the podium. Continue Reading

Saundra McCoy: Minnesota Vikings fans stadium feelings

Last week while driving home from work on Interstate 35E, I noticed the progress of the new Vikings Stadium. Well at least the massive piles of steel that it will be built from. As reported by Craig Peters in his article, “New Vikings Stadium Nearly a Quarter Complete through Symphony of Work”, the new Vikings stadium is ahead of schedule and was 23 percent complete at the end of September. I am excited to know the stadium is set to open in July 2016.This is a Community Voices submission and is moderated but not edited. The opinions expressed by Community Voices contributors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TC Daily Planet.Controversy about whether or not there should be a new stadium, where it should be and who will pay has faded. Continue Reading

PHOTOS: Thousands protest Washington football game at U of M

Thousands of protesters gathered at TCF Stadium at the University of Minnesota on Nov. 2 to protest the Washington football team name, which they call offensive.Native leaders, artists and community members were joined by a host of politicians- including former Governor Jesse Ventura, Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges, Congressman Keith Ellison, Winona LaDuke and many more in what some are calling the largest protest over a sports team name ever.While numerous sports teams have been targeted over the years for showing images of American Indians as mascots, The Washington football team has born a particular amount of criticism in the last year due to the racial slur of the team’s name.Rhonda Reese, who walked with protesters from the American Indian Opportunities Industrialization Center (AIOIC), said she was there because “Redskins” is a racial slur. “It’s a bounty they put on the Native people for their scalps,” she said. “It’s negative and it’s derogatory.”The gathering that started at AIOIC was organized by 14 different local groups including AIM of the Twin Cities, Save the Kids, OccupyMN, Protect Our Manoomin and the Minnesota Two Spirit Society. Besides speakers, hip hop artists Mic Jordan and Tall Paul performed.“I’m a modern day warrior,” Mic Jordan rapped. Continue Reading

Warroad Warriors rededicated amid National Coalition Against Racism in Sports and Media’s ongoing campaigns

In its 30 year quest to influence teams to change their names, mascots and logos from those that are offense to Native Americans, the National Coalition Against Racism in Sports and Media is making strides. Thousands of high schools and colleges across the country have felt the pressure and given up names which encourage stereotyping of indigenous people.

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The NFL and the sad lessons of Ray Rice

During [Thursday] evening’s “Thursday Night Football,” the NFL is unveiling the first of a series of public service announcements denouncing domestic violence and sexual assault. While the PSAs are a move in the right direction, they should be only the first down in the NFL’s game plan to address Ray Rice’s assault of his then-fiancée and other incidents in which NFL players have abused women. Continue Reading

City attorney: Minneapolis can’t ban Washington team name

Minneapolis doesn’t have legal authority to ban the Washington Redskins’ name when the NFL team plays at TCF Bank Stadium early next month, the city’s attorney said to a City Council committee Wednesday.The legal opinion came more than two weeks after council members started exploring whether they could legally ban the name and mascot that some people have called racist and offensive toward American Indians.Some City Council members and activists say they’re disappointed with the outcome of the attorney’s review, and discussion surfaced at the committee meeting about revisiting the issue when the Washington team plays at the new Minnesota Vikings stadium that’s set to open in 2016.“This is part of a larger problem,” Ward 2 City Councilman Cam Gordon said at the meeting. “Derogatory terms against Native Americans go back a long, long way.”At the meeting, the city attorney who gave the legal opinion, Susan Segal, said she and her office “would like nothing better than to be able to file a lawsuit and help provoke a long-overdue change in the name of [the Washington] team.”But banning the name would be a violation of the First Amendment, she said, which protects freedom of speech.Also, Minneapolis’ civil rights ordinance doesn’t apply to the University of Minnesota since it’s a state institution, Segal said.The University has already said it has no authority to enforce a ban on the name when the team plays at its stadium Nov. 2.When the new Vikings stadium is completed, the city might have a case against the team because the stadium falls within its jurisdiction, Segal said at the meeting.But the First Amendment might prevent any legal action in that case, she said.“[The First Amendment], whether we like it or not, protects really hateful speech as well as speech that we favor,” Segal said.If Minneapolis could show that the name creates a “hostile environment,” its claims could have legal standing, she said.Ward 5 City Councilman Blong Yang said he doesn’t think Minneapolis is the right plaintiff for this kind of suit. A private citizen, who could more easily claim that the name creates a hostile environment, might be more appropriate for the task, he said.“It seems like this creates a hostile environment for Native Americans who want to attend and to be part of that,” Gordon said at the meeting. “It’s unhealthy.”Gordon, who represents the University and surrounding areas on the City Council, previously drafted a resolution calling on the NFL and the Washington team to change the name.Alan Yelsey, a member of the National Coalition Against Racism in Sports and Media, said the group expects 2,000 to 4,000 people to protest the use of the name — which he referred to as the “R-word” — at the stadium on the day of the game.Although Yelsey said he was pleased with Segal’s research into the issue, he said he was disappointed with the legal opinion.“People can be damaged from speech like this, and they should be protected from it,” he said. Continue Reading