Star Tribune stories create false spectre

Recent stories published by the Star Tribune about the MUL (“Did Urban League get paid twice?” April 13, and subsequent stories) have created a false specter of financial impropriety, have distorted the organization’s history in delivery of contracted services and, as a result, have undermined the reputation of a long-standing community organization.
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We expect better from the StarTribune

The StarTribune article on March 18, “Nonprofit paid to help with minority hiring at stadium short of goal…Workforce Is Diverse, But No Thanks to Nonprofit That Was Hired to Help”, totally missed the mark. We expect better of the StarTribune. This story was far beneath the standards we expect from a major newspaper in a growing and diverse community. It is no secret that Minnesota has the worst racial disparities on most socioeconomic indicators in the nation. The success of minority employment hiring on the Viking Stadium construction could have far-reaching implications for the economic well-being of our community as a whole. This begs the question of why the success of the Viking’s Stadium, which is exceeding all its workforce and business development goals for people of color, is not being trumpeted. Rather than applauding and understanding this unprecedented accomplishment, the StarTribune squandered this opportunity to educate its readers concerning employment disparities in our cities.  Instead, it chose to unfairly castigate a well-respected African-American led legacy institution – Summit Academy Opportunities Industrialization Center (SAOIC) and its African-American leader Louis King.King, like many others, may have underestimated the actual effectiveness of Mortenson Construction, THOR Construction, subcontractors, the MSFA equity program and the trade unions; and therefore overestimated the actual needs on the project. Continue Reading

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

Star Tribune runs full-page anti-transgender ad

The Minnesota Child Protection League, an anti-LGBT group that opposes LGBT inclusion in the state’s public schools, bought an ad in the Sunday Star Tribune. The ad says, “A male wants to shower beside your 14 year old daughter. Are you okay with that?”The ad is part of a push by MNCPL to stop the Minnesota State High School League from passing a policy that would provide inclusion for transgender athletes. The Catholic Church and the religious right have mounted a campaign to block it. In the process, they’ve perpetuated false stereotypes about transgender people, including the myth that transgender students will prey on fellow students in locker rooms, showers, restrooms and hotel rooms. According to many law enforcement, civil rights and sexual assault prevention organizations, the idea that transgender inclusion will put anyone at risk is unfounded.Related article: State athletics league mulls transgender inclusion in sportsThe Minnesota State High School League is “a voluntary, nonprofit association of public and private schools with a history of service to Minnesota’s high school youth since 1916.” The MSHSL oversees much of the athletics in the state.According to the proposed policy, transgender high school students can play on the team of their choice (male or female) but must have a physician’s documentation and in some cases must have begun hormone therapy to “preserve competitive equity.” The MSHSL policy also provides transgender students avenues for corrective action if a school district does not comply.The MSHSL will meet on Wednesday, Oct. 1, and Thursday, Oct. Continue Reading

Jeff Strate: A Mike “Stretch” Gelfand sighting

Joan Rivers, Lewis Black, Jackie Vernon and Phyllis Diller were among the comedians Mike “Stretch” Gelfand and I talked about yesterday (September 4th) during a retreat to a Linden Hills caffeine pump, a kind of comfort zone for chronically under employed Wi-Fi junkies. We were unaware that Joan had passed away in Manhattan earlier in the afternoon but understood that she was on her way out.I recalled a scene in the riveting 2010 documentary “Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work” in which a stoked-up heckler in a rural Wisconsin casino fails to shame Rivers for pitching one-liners about Hellen Keller. With cinema verite footage, the film (co-directed by Edina native Annie Sundberg) essays a survivor recapturing her perch as one of America’s most funny and edgy comics.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.We inconclusively pondered why Joan had allowed herself to be booked into a dead end comedy club in Wisconsin. Late of the KQRS Morning Show and with a textured life as a newspaper man, Canterbury Park horse racing tout, public relations flak, sports cableTV co-host, and cab driver, Mike Gelfand has also earned pocket change by booking Twin Cities comics into upper-midwest clubs. Continue Reading

FREE SPEECH ZONE | Star Tribune Bias and Cavlan US Senate Campaign

Commentary submission:Free Speech ZoneThe Free Speech Zone offers a space for contributions from readers, without editing by the TC Daily Planet. This is an open forum for articles that otherwise might not find a place for publication, including news articles, opinion columns, announcements and even a few press releases. The opinions expressed in the Free Speech Zone and Neighborhood Notes, as well as the opinions of bloggers, are their own and not necessarily the opinion of the TC Daily Planet.On Wednesday October 3rd, the Star Tribune published an article on page 2 of the Metro section by Corey Mitchell. It was about Republican US  Senate candidate Kurt Bills and his allegations about an Amy Klobuchar campaign commercial. A few days before the Star Tribune had what can only be called a front page advertisement for Senator Klobuchar. Continue Reading

FREE SPEECH ZONE | Minneapolis Star Tribune Caught In Lie Of Omission- Call To Action

On Monday, September 25th the Minneapolis Star Tribune had a front page article on the release from Iran of three hikers. One of them, Shane Bauer is originally from Minnesota. The problem with the story is that it is based on falsehoods. The article can only be described as a thinly disguised propaganda piece. It is a serious and blatant lie of omission, which is how the mainstream media tends to operate in this day and age. Continue Reading

OPINION | Let’s help our biggest local news resource evolve and survive

Something scary is happening in our city, and something hopeful.The Star Tribune is in bankruptcy, newspapers around the country are dying, the Pioneer Press is hurting, and all that’s scary. But the reporters and editors at the Star Tribune are taking their futures into their own hands – and that’s hopeful and resourceful. Instead of just leaving their fates in the hands of a bankruptcy judge in New York or possible new buyers, the Minneapolis members of the Newspaper Guild have been researching new business and ownership models for providing great daily journalism to the community. And they’re inviting the community to help them solve a challenge that hasn’t yet been fully met anywhere in the world – how to keep a major daily newspaper viable in the electronic age when so much of its content has been available free online. The journalists – and I – think Minnesotans can find a solution. Continue Reading