Serving the UMN community since 1900

The Minnesota Daily

Serving the UMN community since 1900

The Minnesota Daily

Serving the UMN community since 1900

The Minnesota Daily

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On into the spring semester

The local focus is more important than ever in the fight to better our lives.

At the beginning of last semester, the editorial board called for action above compromise in light of the many defeats being suffered on the progressive front. Again, this semester we call for an active citizenship. Again we call for a vigilant and participating readership.

Last semester was a good one; the editorial board addressed national and local issues. In particular, the local issues proved fruitful and as varying as cage-free eggs, the defeat of anti-student City Council measures and showcasing of sustainability measures.

With help from our readership we addressed many issues that might not have otherwise seen the ink of the presses. We questioned the research aims of the University. We railed against the erosion of the University’s founding mission. We warned against the loss of small locally owned businesses in our neighborhoods. For every comment on the national issues affecting us all, there was insight into umpteen local issues in which we have direct influence.

We must thank you, our readers, for providing us with the grist to day in and day out advocate for change. Without your comments, complaints and news tips, we would not be able to provide such content.

Across the United States, the tides of public opinion at least seem to be turning. President George W. Bush continues to run his presidency as though the only thing that ever mattered is kissing the toes of the rich.

We have seen scandal after scandal seep out of Washington and still see no hint of impeachment proceedings. The Democrats are as bad in their incompetence as an opposition party as the Republicans are in their greed. Abandoned by our political leaders, we are left to fight our own battles.

Indeed, the local front is where the battles will be won. A community bound together can cause change. We have seen much of the media in the Twin Cities abandon their communities and offer generic stories with little social importance. This will not happen with the editorial board; its focus on local issues will continue to intensify.

There are many local fights with international implications. Coca-Cola is still sold at the University despite increasing evidence of its moral corruption and continued exploitation of communities abroad.

The University still has ties with Aramark and thus supports increasingly unsuitable conditions for University employees. Time Warner Cable aims to suck even more money out of residence hall-bound students. Chain restaurants continue to choke out local business owners.

The University’s support for the corporation unwilling to accept its responsibility to the community ties largely in with the state of the nation. The University as a collective consumer can influence billion-dollar business. We as individuals have the power through our wallets to advocate and accomplish positive change.

The editorial board will make it one of its goals to continue to spotlight local issues, especially many of the financial relationships influencing the University’s direction.

The editorial board will continue to strive to offer substantive opinions on the issues based on our collective ideals and experiences as students. We will take second looks at issues from the fall semester and bring new issues to light.

As the University campus paper, the Daily has an obligation to its readers to seek issues of importance and offer an enlightened perspective on the side of progress. The editorial board is composed of students just like you. We will make mistakes. When those mistake inevitably happen, we promise our readership to be up front and clear. If you have complaints, call us. E-mail us. If you have feedback, positive or negative, feel free to use the contact information at the top of this page to let us know.

Undoubtedly, the coming semester will provide surprises. Undoubtedly, controversies will arise, and we will be proud to be a part of them. We will be part of the rising voice of local communities. Neighborhood issues, local politics and the concerns of students will be our focus.

And it seems the only way anything will swing our way is if we work together to fight it, if we demand that corporations and politicians be responsible for the common good. The local battles are winnable.

We are proud to be a part of the current and coming fights. It’s going to be a semester, and we look forward to helping to improve our collective lives.

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