Mayor Rybak

Recent Articles

Much at stake in police investigation of Franklin death



In view of stories and commentary published in this newspaper and in other media the past two months concerning the May 10 death of Terrance Franklin at the hands of Minneapolis police, the MSR urges the responsible authorities to immediately reassure the public in general and the African American community in particular that justice will be done in determining exactly what occurred in this deadly exchange and, should any police misconduct be discovered, it will be suitably punished. The circumstances are ugly: A young, unarmed Black man suspected of burglary is trapped in a basement by five armored and armed-to-the-teeth SWAT officers as well as an unleashed police dog and, from all appearances, ends up executed gangland-style, with two of the officers somehow wounded in an exchange that remains a puzzle. Police accounts are contradictory. Equivocations by the police chief, silence from the mayor and city council, withholding of evidence from the family by the county attorney — all of this fans the flames of discontent within communities long subjected to police abuse and growing more and more impatient with official cover-ups. Add to this toxic mix a cop known for his abusive tactics and racial epithets against Blacks (as well as many others) who former chief Tim Dolan called “a great performer” and who has been awarded several awards and medals in spite of his history of abuse, and a potentially explosive discontent threatens to overwhelm the rational prosecution of justice in the case of MPD v. Terrance T. Franklin. Continue Reading →

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Where is the equity plan for the Viking Stadium?








The Minneapolis City Council passed a binding resolution May 10, 2012, directing the Civil Rights Department to report to the June council meeting: “1) Master agreement details, including stadium equity plan; 2) Enforcement and reporting structure relating to Stadium Equity Plan” (see City Council website, It was approved by Mayor Rybak May 25, 2012. Velma Korbel and her Civil Rights Department has yet to report. Are the State, authority, city council and mayor paying lip service to the stadium legislation or are they serious? No report nor steps to correct reflects “not serious.”

The resolution identifies expectations and reporting responsibilities within the city council’s structure, as defined in Article 1, Section 16, of the stadium legislation. Continue Reading →

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Another child’s death spreads fear and dismay

When five-year-old Nizzel Anthony George’s mother laid him down to sleep Tuesday night, June 26, she assumed that her child, her “hero,” as she called him, would enjoy his sleep and have the pleasant dreams of a five-year-old child. Instead, a waking nightmare: “Shot in his sleep, North Side boy dies” (Star Tribune headline, June 26). The headline the next day: “Family angry, police anxious a day after boy’s fatal shooting.”

Minneapolis police say an ”ongoing dispute” between youth is behind the gunfire, with shots fired into another house two blocks away earlier that night. The family is understandably angry that the police “hinted” (Star Tribune’s word) that not only does the family know who did it, but they won’t tell, and there are others in the neighborhood who know but won’t tell. Mayor Rybak and Police Chief Dolan blame a lack of gun control laws. Continue Reading →

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Occupy Homes is right — foreclosure is a moral issue



As Mayor Rybak and the City of Minneapolis scramble to make clear their role in home foreclosures, the stand taken by Occupy Homes is making it clear that this issue is not black and white and that at bottom there is a moral component. And there is the question of whether public monies should be used in this dispute between a homeowner and lender. The law and rule of law make it easy to forget that at bottom we are human beings and the law should make it easier for all of us to live as human beings rather than as consumers and victims of commercial swindle. Of course it is commercial swindle, because who said interest had to be eight or 12 percent? And how did the banks get to offer and then enforce adjustable mortgages that seem destined to go higher rather than lower? Continue Reading →

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