They want him gone, and now. Mara Gottfried of the Pioneer Press reports, “Black Lives Matter St. Paul plans a protest at Red Bull Crashed Ice, saying they’ll hold a ‘nonviolent shutdown action’ if a St. Paul police sergeant is not fired over comments he made on Facebook about protesters. The group said Monday it will demonstrate Feb. 27 during the Ice Cross Downhill World Championship. … Generally speaking, the city has said that an internal-affairs investigation, discipline decision and appeals could take nine to 12 months. Black Lives Matter St. Paul listed seven demands Monday, not all them about Rothecker. They also called for an end to the grand jury process in police-involved homicides and assaults, and for the U.S. Department of Justice to re-open the officer-involved shooting of Marcus Golden in St. Paul last year.”
We always need something new to worry about. At MPR, Lorna Benson says, “Mayo Clinic researchers have identified a new species of bacteria that causes Lyme disease. They first detected the organism in 2012, but only recently published a study of six patients from Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin who tested positive for the bacteria. Their illnesses differed from the typical course of Lyme disease. Patients experienced nausea and vomiting and two were hospitalized because they were so sick, said study author Dr. Bobbi Pritt, director of the Clinical Parasitology Laboratory at Mayo Clinic. And their rashes did not look like the tell-tale bulls eye-shaped inflammation associated with Lyme disease, Pritt said.”
Good piece from KMSP-TV’s Tom Lyden on a frustrated FBI informant. “A Twin Cities man who served as a confidential terror informant for the FBI has been cut from the program after becoming frustrated with investigators. Tony (Mohamed) Osman says he worked undercover for the FBI for about a year, between June 2014 and June 2015, and was paid $2,000 a month in cash. He said he spied on his cousin and many of the young Minnesota men who are currently indicted on terror charges for providing material support to ISIS. Osman told the Fox 9 Investigators that officials should be going after the recruiters, not those who are being enlisted into the war on terror.”
Don’t get too excited thinking about Minnesota-grown bananas. Says Bob Shaw at the PiPress, “All citrus fruits, as well as avocados and bananas, can’t be economically grown and sold locally. It’s far cheaper to grow them on farms in warmer climates and ship them thousands of miles. Try as they might, said [Steve Shrump, master grower of J&J Distributing in St. Paul], local growers will never be competitive in certain kinds of produce. Bananas, oranges and apples, for example, can be shipped for weeks without hurting them — making them an ideal imported product. For now, that means most fruits and vegetables found in supermarkets will not be local. In the winter, only about 1 percent of the fresh produce in a typical supermarket is locally grown, estimates Jim Hannigan, CEO of J&J Distributing.”
Also via MPR, Bob Collins finds a San Jose Mercury News story about Vikings legend Joe Kapp. The news isn’t good. Elliott Almond writes, “Kapp, 77, who led the Vikings against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl IV in 1970, just can’t remember anymore. The effects of Alzheimer’s disease are holding his mind captive. The man known for taking a licking on the field shared his condition with this news organization as word about the brain disease of star quarterbacks Ken Stabler and Earl Morrall surfaced before Super Bowl 50 on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium. He also shared concerns about his grandson, Frank, who is heading into his second season in Berkeley as a third-generation Kapp to take the field for Cal. ‘Don’t let your son be a football player,’ Joe said, ‘and here I am letting my grandson play.’”
A judge says no to 3M. Elizabeth Dunbar, also at MPR reports, “A judge has ruled against 3M in its bid to disqualify attorneys in a lawsuit the state of Minnesota has brought against the company. Hennepin County Judge John McShane concluded Friday that 3M knew about a potential conflict of interest, but chose not to bring it up until both sides had already done significant work on the case. The state sued 3M in 2010 over the company’s manufacture and disposal of perfluorinated chemicals, or PFCs, that have polluted Minnesota water.”
More Grand-er. Says Sarah Horner in the PiPress, “St. Paul’s Grand Old Day could turn into Grand Old Days this June. The Grand Avenue Business Association is proposing that the annual day-long street celebration that takes place annually on a summer Sunday kick off on Saturday, according to the association’s executive director, Jon Perrone. Saturday would be more like Sunday’s tamer cousin though, Perrone said, with events only happening inside Grand Avenue businesses and live music limited to two location: the parking lots at Billy’s on Grand and the Wild Onion.”
A what bank for bees? Dan Gunderson at MPR says, “While [Joe] Rinehart, a researcher at the United States Department of Agriculture labs in Fargo, can easily break the process into bite-sized terms, the science of freezing insect embryos — and bringing them back to life — remains frustratingly complex. With honeybees under stress from pests, disease and pesticides, USDA officials hope to build a bee gene bank to store sperm and embryos, preserving bee genetics for future generations. That’s something commonly done for humans and most domesticated animals. But it’s a trickier business for bees than for humans.”
Maybe the idea is for elk to replace the moose? Fargo‘s valleynewslive.com has a DNR story up saying, “… beginning Feb. 15 and weather permitting, the DNR will collar approximately 20 adult female elk in northwestern Minnesota, from three herds in Kittson, Roseau and Marshall counties. Elk will be temporarily restrained and fitted with a GPS collar and identifying ear tags; body measurements and other biological data will also be collected. The elk will be released at the site of capture. The GPS collars will collect locations of the elk every 4 to 6 hours during most of the study. During key biological periods, such as when calves are born, locations of the elk will be taken every hour. The locations will be uploaded to satellites, and the researchers will receive email messages with elk locations daily.”
More stuff from Wisconsin you can’t make up. At City Pages Cory Zurowski writes, “As far as criminals are concerned, Amanda Eggert is an amateur. The 33-year-old Wisconsin woman’s record dates back more than a decade. She’s been busted for a variety of indiscretions, including weed possession, disorderly conduct, and driving without insurance. But Eggert upped her game late last month. A 911 call came in on January 29 from a citizen of Polk County, Wisconsin, located some 50 minutes northeast of the Twin Cities. The caller reported seeing a pickup truck swerving all over the winding country roads of God’s country. … Eggert and her boyfriend Jason Roth were riding shotgun. The couple’s 11-month-old infant was strapped into a car seat. Behind the wheel was Eggert’s 9-year-old daughter, who’d apparently been enlisted to drive because the adults were too drunk.”
Still keeping up with the local crew scouring San Francisco for Super Bowl ideas, the Strib’s Rochelle Olson writes, “ ‘We had so many partners out here that we’ve got to pull all of our ideas together,’ [Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee CEO Maureen Bausch] said. ‘Everyone sees [Super Bowl week] through different eyes.’ Some things left impressions. The tailgating area at Levi’s Stadium, for example, was fully tented and felt too cramped, Bausch said. ‘We’re certainly going to be enclosed, so how do we make it more spacious?’ She added that it would be nice to offer fans more samples of local products, such as 3M Post-it notes. Good flow is crucial Host Committee spokeswoman Andrea Mokros noted the efficient way that fans were moved in and out of the stadium and from San Francisco, an hour away. ‘We were on and off the freeway very fast, so we need to talk to them about how they did that,’ she said.” I say we give everyone a frozen grape salad.
“Life has never been sweeter than when you’re a cake eater?” A vile video rip at the suburb — Edina (i.e. “Sweet Home Edina”) — with the most job creators per square inch is enjoying appalling popularity on the Internet. Who do we sue?