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Commentaries

Mar 19, 2015
I’ve long believed marriage can be strengthened, and nonmarital birth rates measurably reduced, if we find ways of taking greater advantage of our nation’s religious institutions and traditions. More than a few observers think I’m wrong for thinking as I do: some because they gauge the power of faith as insufficient in such matters, and others because they believe marriage as we have come to know it in the United States and other key parts of the world is beyond rescue.
Feb 23, 2015
Hillary Clinton made the ringing phone a central image of her 2008 presidential campaign, but the image is as much one of personal crises as geopolitical ones. When something goes wrong, who do you call in the middle of the night to watch your kids or give you a place to stay or a listening ear?
Feb 9, 2015
In a ritual familiar to many Minnesotans, I recently made plans to visit my mother in Florida. When I called to compare calendars, she surprised me. After just a few months as a new snowbird, she is thinking of becoming a resident of Florida. “We are happy to pay the taxes, but the estate tax is another matter,” she said
Feb 8, 2015
What is Minnesotans’ image of a Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis today? Many likely think of gray-haired men performing empty rituals for dwindling congregations in the shadow of the recent clergy sex-abuse scandal. They may imagine young men recoiling from the prospect of a life of “thou shalt nots,” leaving seminaries empty.
Jan 28, 2015
In honor of National School Choice Week, a very quick review of Minnesota gubernatorial history regarding educational freedom going back to 1971, all aimed at answering the question: What longstanding and telling pattern is Mark Dayton threatening to end?
Jan 26, 2015
For many Millennials, relationships are like picking a snack. You aren't going to dig into a thick slice of cake covered with white fondant and topped with two tiny plastic figurines until you're really ready for it. You want a snack without so many consequences.
Jan 14, 2015
Should community college tuition be the responsibility of the federal government? Our president apparently thinks so. I say “apparently” because he certainly could have achieved this goal had he made it a priority when his party controlled Congress. Now that his party is in the minority in both houses of Congress, it’s hard to take this proposal seriously.
Dec 22, 2014
A few thoughts provoked by Bernadeia Johnson’s announced resignation last week as superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools.
Dec 17, 2014
For most of our history the teaching of history (and everything else) has been a local concern. That piece of our history might well be drawing to a close. What’s even more troublesome is the content of a more nationalized curriculum. Witness the proposed national advanced placement (AP) standards for the teaching of American history. To be sure, it is important that our students, AP or otherwise, acquire some common knowledge about our past. But what seems to be at work here is an attempt to put in place a common point of view – and one with a political agenda at that. This ought to concern parents of all political persuasions. After all, politicizing a history curriculum in one ideological direction at one historical moment will not prevent re-politicizing it in a different ideological direction at a different historical moment.
Dec 12, 2014
Note: Kim was honored to serve on a panel with MnDOT Commissioner Charlie Zelle, Bentley Graves from the Minnesota Chamber and Dave Van Hattum from Transit for Livable Communities on December 12, 2014. Our thanks to Deb McMillan from Twin West for hosting the discussion.