Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Why do we allow Race Baiting?

I was going to blog today about Rep. Akin not getting out of the race after his remarks on "illegitimate rape" but I found this article: http://www.theroot.com/blogs/paul-ryan/does-paul-ryans-black-girlfriend-matter

Keli Goff goes down an interesting path with this article in determining if the fact that Rep. Ryan dated a black girl or the fact that he has black sister-in-law. I understand bringing up race, to some, is no place for a white middle class male living in the Midwest since that equates to a life of privilege and open doors. Yet, I will do it anyway because it's important to discuss race in most contexts.

Ms. Goff does raise a valid point if ones views or belief accurately reflect their actions. Now, I have always been told that actions speak louder than words but that aside. The article goes right up to the edge of calling Rep. Ryan a racist since his minority friends are the exceptions to the rule. Ms. Goff writes, "Research has shown that those who hold stereotypes about a particular group of people are unlikely to have those stereotypes altered merely by encountering someone who defies that stereotype. Instead, they are likely to view that individual defying said stereotype as an exception." Here is the research: http://www.faculty.umb.edu/lawrence_blum/publications/publications/A48.pdf

When did stereotypes become racist? Everyone generalizes to a point until they do encounter people from said group. The media loves to paint with the broad brush and so do many on the blogsphere; I will admit I do it from time to time as well. Ms. Goff ends with, "No, I am not calling Ryan a racist, I am saying, however, that if you want to know where a politician's heart lies when it comes to a particular community, it may be best to look at that person's polices..." I.E. voting record.

To this point I completely agree with Ms. Goff that we need to vet our candidates for higher office instead of focusing on stereotypes. Race shouldn't be a factor for anyone casting a vote but we all know that it is unfortunately - both for or against. Trouble is that if one uses race to vote against a candidate its racism but if they vote for the candidate based on race alone it's historic. They both are example of racism. To Ms. Goff's question - What do you think? - No, we should be talking about the race of one's girlfriend or wife or husband or candidate. The focus should be on the issues and if one disagrees with another it can be because of a difference of opinion on how to solve the issues of the day and not the color of the skin of the other person. Ms. Goff says that white folks use "I have black friends" as a cover for racist action if that is really the case then it is equally the case that calling another black an "Uncle Tom" is also a cover for racist action.  

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Hamburg City Council Agenda - August 16, 2012

AUGUST 16, 2012

  1.  Call City Council Meeting to Order
    • Pledge of Allegiance
2. Public Comment (Individuals may address the City Council about any non-agenda item(s) of concern.
Speakers must state their name, address, and limit their remarks to three minutes. The City Council may not
take official action on these items and may refer the matter to staff for a future report or direct that the matter be scheduled for a future meeting agenda.)

3. Agenda Review (Added Items) and Adoption

4. Consent Agenda (NOTICE TO PUBLIC: All those items listed as part of the Consent Agenda will be
approved by a single motion, unless a request to discuss one of those items is made prior to that time. Anyone present at the meeting may request an item to be removed from the consent agenda. Please inform the Council when they approve the agenda for this meeting.)

  • Approve Minutes for July 10, 2012
  • Municipal Boundary Adjustment Unit (Joint Resolution for Orderly Annexations – Gamber Property & Storm Water Pond Parcel)
  •  Local Government Aid for 2013
  • Time-off Request for Sue Block
  •  Mediacom Video Rate Adjustments
  • Carver County Sign Replacement Project
  • MNSPECT Minute for August 2012
  • June Cash Flow Statement
  •  Water Wells Usage/Water Consumption Reports for July 2012
  • Delinquent Utility Bills Report
  • Employee Project Lists

5. Fire Department Report – Chief Brad Droege

  • DNR Grant Application
  • National Night Out – August 7th, 2012
    • Memorial for Public Servants (Protective Services) Update
  • Decorative Fountain for Park Pond (Donations)
  • Hamburg Fire Department Relief Association – Gary Marquardt
  • 2011 Reporting Year Forms (Notice from State Auditor)
  • Purchase New Flags ($1,600)
  • HFRDA Pension Increase

6. Parkside Tavern – Brian Eggers

  • Request to Close Part of Railroad Street for Bars 5th Anniversary

7. Justin Black – City Engineer (S.E.H.)

  • Street Repairs for 2012
    • 2012 Seal Coating/Crack Filling Project – Review Quotes (4)
    • Overlay of County Road 50 – Punch List Items
  •  Sanitary & Storm Water Improvement Project
    • Final Check/Punch List Items/Final Payment
    •  Private Property Service Lines (Illegal Connections/Replacement)

8. Old City Business (Memo)

  • City Clean Up Day (Fall 2012)
  • 2010 Census Count/Met Council Population Estimates (April 1, 2011)
  • Community Center Closet Door (Replace)
  • Sign for City Hall/Township
  • Use of SHIP Monies (Handicap Access to Parks)
  • Revised NIMS Training Program (Requirements)

9. Public Works & Utilities Department Report

  • Liftstation Repairs
    • Dialer
    • Pumps
  • Community Center (Paint)

10. City Clerk/Treasurer Report

  • Insurance Claims from June 18th & 19th Storms
    • Sewer Back-ups
    • HFD Sign & Baseball Park Fence
  • Primary Election – August 14th, 2012
  • Policing Cost for 2013
  • Tax Forfeited Lot on Brad Street
    • Assessments on Parcel
  • Property/Casualty Insurance Renewal
    • Monetary Limits
    • Liquor Liability
  • Budget Workshop Meetings
    • August 28th, 2012 @ 7:00 PM
    • September 4th or 5th or 6th @ 7:00 PM
  • City Council Meetings for 2012/2013
    • One Meeting a Month

11. Approve DEBIT Payment for June 2012 Claims ($229.00)
Approve Payment of Added July 2012 Claims ($14,318.08)
Approve Payment of August 2012 Claims ($93,692.34)

12. City Council Reports

  • Councilmember Mueller Report (Sewer & Water)
    • SAFL Baffle
  • Councilmember Lund Report (Streets)
  • Councilmember Trebesch Report (Buildings
  •  Councilmember Barnes Report (Parks)
  • Mayor Malz Report

13. Adjourn City Council Meeting

AUGUST 5 – Park Rental (Wroge)
7 – National Night Out
15 – Boy Scouts (Park)
18 – Wedding Reception (Panning/Schwalbe)
18 – Emanuel Lutheran Ribfest
20 – Hamburg Lions Club (Park)
26 – Park Rental (Schmidt)
AUGUST 6 – Hamburg Lions Club
6 – HFD Training
14 – State Primary Election 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM
16 – Hamburg City Council Meeting – 7:00 PM
18 – Community Center Rental (Moreno)
27 – Hamburg Fire Department (HFDRA)
28 – 2013 Budget Workshop (?)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Intolerance - Who owns it?

Recently the CEO of Chick-fil-a voiced his opinion on same-sex marriage. An opinion that is not in favor of same-sex marriage. It prompted several Mayors to say that they would not allow a Chick-fil-a to be opened in their city. Why? Because of the view of the CEO that is against same-sex marriage. Naturally the CEO is being lambasted in the media, a few exceptions, as intolerant or a bigot because of his religious view.

While I don't agree with same-sex marriage, I do recognize that government has no reason to dictate to me, or anyone, on who they can or cannot live their life with. That aside, the question that sticks in my craw is: Why is voicing ones religious views considered ignorant; yet another can voice their view that runs counter to another's religious view and its considered enlightening?