Ron Edwards

Recent Articles

Ferguson and Homeland Security: Are they intertwined?

As we watch closely the events in Ferguson and greater St. Louis County, Missouri, we are disturbed to hear Democrats and Republicans say it is somehow related to the threat to America’s national security, as if Ferguson represents the beginning of an invasion from otherwise uninvolved Black communities. As threats are made by real terrorists to fly their flag over the White House, we appreciate the personal and nationalist threats but not the suggestion it represents Black Americans. The sense of foreboding from the realness of the threats is being used as an excuse to tighten security for greater control of neighborhoods of color unrelated to the national security issues, as Ferguson demonstrates regarding the new debate over the militarization of urban police. The Black community is keenly aware that not since the roundup of Japanese Americans during the Second World War, and the creation of internment camps, and the expression of fear during the urban riots of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, has the Negro population been as unfairly painted as a threat to our national security. Continue Reading →

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Vikings win — again

Wilfs save stadium — again

Did you cheer the Vikings paying $50 million more toward stadium costs? Jeer instead the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA), state legislature and city council that created this mess. The Minneapolis Star Tribune, August 22-25, 2014 ran stories suggesting this cheers-jeers difference. It is not the MSFSA saving the Vikings, but — drum roll, please — the Wilf Vikings ownership group. We can hear MSFA and others cheer under their breath, “Thank God for Zygi.”

Stadium cost have risen from $975 million to $1.023 billion (and will continue to climb as we predicted last year, estimating eventually at least $300 million). Continue Reading →

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Ferguson, MO: an American race tragedy, again. Conflicting versions with parallels to Minneapolis

Michael Brown, August 9, 2014, 18 years old, to start college in two days, unarmed. Instead: stopped by police while walking on a Ferguson, MO street, suburb of St. Louis, he was shot and killed. Rioting, burning, and looting followed: “…like a war zone.”

The police version differs greatly from community eye witnesses, suggesting blinded justice, promising but unable to see how to deliver a police investigation with truth and transparency. Will the FBI and Department of Justice have the same problem? Continue Reading →

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Stadium update

Is 34 percent minority participation goal being met?  
As Vikings fly up and down the field in training camp, our City Council is concerned about birds flying into the Viking Stadium glass walls. Why? They were unconcerned about letting stadium tax dollars fly into the stadium walls without taxpayer required approval. They seem unconcerned about birds flying into blades of giant renewable energy wind mills. Continue Reading →

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The real immigration story

For nearly 400 years, since 1620, the dark secret of American immigration has been its policies detrimental to Blacks (Black Africans, Black Cubans, Black Caribbeans). Most slaves to North America arrived through the Caribbean. We see this dark secret replayed given the contrasting treatment of Black children to that of the thousands of Latin children coming from Central American and Mexico, crossing the Rio Grande into America, with help from their countries and ours, leaving most things unchanged for immigrants from Black Africa, Black Cuba, and Black Caribbean. Thus, America has been confronted with the problem of immigration and race since its inception. Today’s reactions to the voluntary child immigrants ranges from embarrassed and angry, to happy celebration, from seal the border, to take down the walls and fences and let in any who wants to come (Jimmy Carter urged the latter when he was president). Continue Reading →

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MPD and MFD in trouble

Racial balance is being lost
The facts of the last 40 years reveal Minnesota is not, when it comes to African Americans, liberal and progressive. It is illiberal and regressive, openly and defiantly not complying with federal or local civil rights laws and rules, adopting purposeful amnesia to counter such inconvenient memories. • 1972: the federal court in the State of Minnesota, imposed sanctions on the Minneapolis Fire Department and the City of Minneapolis for such violations. • 1979: a request sent by this columnist, as chairman of the Minneapolis Civil Rights Commission, to the federal court for a review of its 1972 decree. The court did so and imposed sanctions on the City of Minneapolis and its fire department, appointing a special federal oversight committee. Continue Reading →

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Remembering Lillian Anderson, Minneapolis’ first civil rights director

Longtime friend Josie Johnson offers tribute to ‘a tough sister’

By Charles Hallman
Staff Writer


Asked which adjectives she’d use to describe Minneapolis’ first civil rights director Rev. Lillian D. Anthony, her longtime friend and former colleague Josie Johnson said “committed, determined and persistent” easily came to mind. A graduate of Lincoln (MO) University and an associate minister in the Presbyterian Church, Anthony passed away at age 88 on June 26 in Louisville, Ky. According to her obituary, Dr. Anthony “transformed her home into the first African American Heritage House Museum founded in Louisville.”

However, Anthony did this as well while living on Minneapolis’ North Side in the late 1960s, recalls Johnson. “She converted her home in ways like a museum. I had known Lillian for many, many years, way back to the 1960s. Continue Reading →

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