Every day we are bombarded with information – far more than we can handle thrown at us from a perspective we don’t understand. The most common response is outrage – disbelief that this could possibly happen.
Every day we find ourselves in situations we don’t understand – things that are going crazy around us.. The most common response is outrage – disbelief that this could possibly happen.
The officers responsible for the death of Jamar Clark on 15 November was one of these incidents, and the reports and (lack of) legal proceedings comes at us in much the same way. Everything about this makes no sense if you look deep enough into it yet everyone has an opinion about it. Let me tell you the simple, clear facts that we can be sure of:
Jamar Clark is dead. Any city that has been through this and wants to be known as “civilized” has to make sure that this does not happen ever again.
Since I started serving on the Technical Advisory Committee for the Riverview Corridor transit project, I’ve had a front row seat from which to view the planning process here in St Paul. This isn’t the first time I’ve served on a group like this, but it is the most intensive and serious effort so far.
As a built urban environment, this is not an easy place to plan transit. Traversing the West Seventh neighborhood is only one problem – it has to cross the Mississippi eventually, which will be expensive.
I would like to tell you what I think is the ideal place for transit from Downtown St Paul to the airport and beyond, but it would be inappropriate. The process that we are moving through seems so deeply flawed that jumping to a “solution” is simply not what is needed. Whatever comes out of this is likely to be inadequate and jumbled.
The Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests were forcefully removed from their 18 day encampment outside the Fourth Precinct in Minneapolis – and then took their protest to City Hall. In between they reiterated their demands – Release the tapes, appoint a special prosecutor with no grand jury to investigate the death of Jamar Clark, and institute a safety plan to protect Minneapolis residents from continued police violence.
It’s far from over and the problems did not start with the shooting of Clark by the Minneapolis police. This is a systemic problem and while it wasn’t the protesters’ choice this belongs squarely in City Hall at this point. It’s not about one incident with one police officer but a system, a city, that are not functioning anything like they must.
Who is the man behind the curtain? The selection of Neel Kashkari as the new President of the Minneapolis Federal Reserve is fascinating for a lot of reasons. It’s especially important to those of us who live in the district, of course, but this is not any ordinary position. Kaskkari is taking over for Kocherlakota, the outgoing President who resigned last June – leaving the Fed with one less relentlessly “dovish” member of the Fed Open Market Committee (FOMC).
Who is this new guy? How was he chosen?
The whole process gives us a peak behind the curtain and raises a series of questions about the new, more politically active Fed. Kashkari also brings a new personality and well documented series of biases as an data-loving engineer who is, by all accounts, a genuinely nice if hard-driving guy.