Schulz’s death especially

Charles Schulz’s recent death has been a cause of mourning for “Peanuts” fans around the world, though it is particularly unfortunate for Minnesotans. Schulz, along with Garrison Keillor, had tacitly become a cultural ambassador for the state because of the well-deserved popularity of his comic strip. After his death, however, it is unlikely that Minnesota will soon reproduce an artist whose talent, insight and appeal provides such a source of pride for the state’s residents.
Schulz died in his sleep Saturday night at the age of 77. Although his current home was in California, he continued to have roots in his hometown of St. Paul. “Peanuts” would have celebrated its 50th anniversary this October, but Schulz decided to discontinue it as he could not meet the demands of a daily comic strip after being diagnosed with cancer in November. The daily strip ended circulation in January, and Sunday was the last day for the weekly comic.
Although younger generations might not have read it as religiously as previous ones, they still respected and appreciated “Peanuts” more than any other strip. Always genuine and sincere, “Peanuts” will be remembered both as the seminal example of a newspaper comic strip and a collection of entertaining insights into human behavior with appeal that transcended its medium. Eerily coinciding with his death, his last comic strip illustrated Schulz’s typical humbleness; his farewell address in Sunday’s edition recognized the “Peanuts” gang as characters he “won’t forget.” Certainly, however, “Peanuts” is more than something that faithful readers — and especially Minnesotans — will merely ‘not forget,’ but greatly miss.

Trump avoided defeat

Donald Trump formally announced yesterday he will not seek the Reform Party’s nomination for president this year, ending months of speculation. Trump also ruled out a bid through the Independence Party, Gov. Ventura’s possible spin-off. Although the Reform Party, now controlled by Ross Perot allies, is likely to choose another candidate, Trump correctly realized the party could not competitively support his candidacy against the eventual Republican and Democratic nominees.
Trump left the party because he considered it to be a “total mess,” and he did not want to inhabit the same party as a “Klansman, Mr. Duke” and a “neo-Nazi, Mr. Buchanan.”
Ultimately, Trump’s candidacy would not have been competitive had he won the party’s nomination. Although he is a well-known celebrity and some polls have shown him to be popular, the party would have inhibited his campaign. The party is currently so fractured that it cannot even nominate a presidential candidate, let alone field one. Although Trump has insinuated a possible candidacy in 2004, he has now avoided becoming a defeated nominee of an unorganized party.