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

Jonathan Ababiy, Columnist

All content by Jonathan Ababiy
Ababiy: Dealing with crime before it gets too old

Ababiy: Dealing with crime before it gets too old

Published December 14, 2020
Is there room for young people in the public safety budget?
Ababiy: If you care so much about poor people, let them live next to you.

Ababiy: If you care so much about poor people, let them live next to you.

Published December 11, 2020
Everyone loves affordable housing, unless it's next door. That’s a problem.
Ababiy: How “Build Baby Build” can have unintended consequences

Ababiy: How “Build Baby Build” can have unintended consequences

Published November 13, 2020
A new University of Minnesota study complicates a pure-supply approach to housing affordability.
Ababiy: The Blue Line Extension blunder

[Video] Ababiy: The Blue Line Extension blunder

Published October 15, 2020
The best response to a $129 million mistake is to not make that mistake again.
Ababiy: We’re still waiting for real police reform

Ababiy: We’re still waiting for real police reform

Published September 18, 2020
After a summer of activism, there is little to show for it from our politicians.
Morgan La Casse

Ababiy: Don’t freeze tuition, lower it

Published August 5, 2020

A lot has changed since COVID-19. Schools are closed, work and school have shifted online, and millions have lost their jobs.  But one thing hasn’t changed: the price University of Minnesota undergraduate...

Ababiy: Patronizing, undemocratic, unrepresentative: The Minneapolis Charter Commission

Ababiy: Patronizing, undemocratic, unrepresentative: The Minneapolis Charter Commission

Published August 1, 2020

By day, Andrew Kozak, a veteran Minneapolis politico, makes a living making voices heard at the State Capitol.  No, not your voice but voices like those of RAI Services, a consumer products company...

Protesters dodge tear gas cannisters outside of the Minneapolis 3rd Police Precinct on Tuesday, May 26.

Wanton violence, Pt. II

Published July 25, 2020

Continued from last week's Wanton violence, Pt. I. A pattern of violence In the month since the George Floyd protests began in Minneapolis, neither the mayor nor police chief has announced any disciplinary...

Protesters dodge tear gas cannisters outside of the Minneapolis 3rd Police Precinct on Tuesday, May 26.

Ababiy: Wanton violence, Pt. II

Published July 25, 2020

Continued from last week's Wanton violence, Pt. I. A pattern of violence In the month since the George Floyd protests began in Minneapolis, neither the mayor nor police chief has announced any disciplinary...

A police officer pepper sprays a demonstrator while running after them outside of the Minneapolis 3rd Police Precinct on Minnehaha Avenue on Tuesday, May 26.

Ababiy: Wanton violence, Pt. I

Published July 20, 2020

It was simple.  The protests that came after the killing of George Floyd by four Minneapolis Police officers were an easy opportunity for the MPD and its leadership to demonstrate remorse or a sense...

A police officer pepper sprays a demonstrator while running after them outside of the Minneapolis 3rd Police Precinct on Minnehaha Avenue on Tuesday, May 26.

Wanton violence, Pt. I

Published July 20, 2020

It was simple.  The protests that came after the killing of George Floyd by four Minneapolis Police officers were an easy opportunity for the MPD and its leadership to demonstrate remorse or a sense...

Ababiy: Rep. Daudt’s brazen step into the revolving door

Published December 5, 2019

Crown, Minnesota resident Kurt Daudt, made a big career move a couple weeks ago. According to a press release from his employer Stateside Associates, a D.C. government relations firm which describes itself...

Morgan La Casse

Ababiy: The war on pedestrians

Published November 27, 2019

A few weeks ago, controversy erupted on the app Nextdoor in the University area. I hate to admit that I use it, but it's a nice way to gauge what the 50+ year old demographic is thinking about the neighborhood...

Morgan La Casse

Ababiy: Increasing access to public transit can help fix the Dinkytown food desert

Published November 21, 2019

The MSA Infrastructure Committee has been very productive during my time at the U. They moved to expand the hours of Gopher Chauffeur and pressed Parking and Transportation Services hard about bus problems...

Morgan La Casse

Ababiy: The news story nobody is talking about

Published November 14, 2019

TV stations have never been very good at covering the Minneapolis police.  In 2014, in what Vanity Fair dubbed as “…the Most Pathetic News Story of the Week,” a retired police officer told KSTP...

Morgan La Casse

Ababiy: The NCAA’s step is not enough

Published October 31, 2019

This week, the NCAA Board of Governors did something reasonable. It voted to start allowing compensation for athletes for the use of their name, likeness and image. This means that athletes can get paid...

Students from the University of Minnesota campuses including the Twin Cities, Crookston and Morris gather on the steps for a rally at the Minnesota State Capitol on Wednesday, April 3 as a part of Support the U Day.

Ababiy: Patronage at the University’s energy transition lab

Published September 22, 2019

Jamie Long, a Minneapolis attorney with experience in environmental policy, had an incredibly easy time getting his job at the U's Energy Transition Lab this year. He got to write much of his own job description,...

Morgan La Casse

Ababiy: The student housing loophole

Published September 9, 2019

It's extremely difficult to find an affordable unit in Minneapolis. That will continue to be true, at least in the University area, because of a vague, self-inflicting exemption in a recent inclusionary...

Ababiy: We’ll fix the climate. Tomorrow.

Published April 25, 2019

Billionaire Michael Bloomberg, a special envoy on climate change for the United Nations and the former mayor of New York City, came to Minneapolis with an announcement last fall. With Minneapolis Mayor...

Ababiy: The campus voter turnout problem

Published April 18, 2019

Around this time last year, The Daily Cardinal, a student newspaper at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, reported that voter turnout for student elections at Madison had declined to around six percent. Just...

Ababiy: ACEC: All Campus Error Commission, part II

Published April 11, 2019

The Monday morning of election week at the University of Minnesota, Caroline Pavlecic, an MSA at-large representative running for another term, went to the All Campus Election Commission (ACEC) website...

Ababiy: ACEC: All Campus Error Commission, part I

Published April 4, 2019

Like most freshmen, Blake Paulson didn't know how to plan his classes his first semester and ended up with night classes. He also wanted to join the Minnesota Student Association that semester.  "Student...

Ababiy: Betsy DeVos’ terrible, no good, very bad budget

Published March 28, 2019

These last couple years, I've had a recurring thought: why can't anybody with a lot of money just do nothing with it? It seems like everyone, deserving or undeserving, who's had the kiss of fortune on...

Ababiy: The college admissions scandal is a symptom of a disease

Published March 14, 2019

Most cities don't do this, but for nearly a century the New York City Police Department has tipped off photographers nearly anytime anybody interesting has found themselves being taken to the station in...

Ababiy: Our city needs 13 neighborhood wards

Published March 7, 2019

This week, the Minneapolis Charter Commission will consider a new citizen proposal. The charter commission is similar to a constitutional convention in that it considers petitions and ideas to change the...

Ababiy: A weekend of lies in Minneapolis

Published February 28, 2019

This weekend, one of the world’s youngest hedge fund managers was here in Minneapolis. He was tweeting to his more than 100,000 followers about the city, its people and his investigation into the city....

Ababiy: Free college: everyone else is doing it

Published February 21, 2019

A couple weeks ago, I wrote a column about a recent report on financial aid that was to be presented at the Board of Regents February meeting. The report was informative, and I am glad our regents got...

Ababiy: The Complete Streets Policy means shoveled sidewalks

Published February 14, 2019

Although I haven't been going to the University of Minnesota's Recreational and Wellness Center, I've been jumping a lot the past couple weeks.  I've been jumping from the bus to the curb, praying...

Ababiy: The financial aid delusion

Published February 7, 2019

At its monthly meeting on Thursday, the Board of Regents will hear the presentation for and discuss a report entitled, "Holistic View of Student Financial Burden." I stumbled on it while skimming the board's...

Ababiy: Decoding the statistics of loneliness on campus

Published January 31, 2019

Coming into college, my vision of what my four years would be like was something like Vampire Weekend's first album, "Vampire Weekend." I pictured myself as someone who would frequently be in rooms like...

Ababiy: Legislators, politicians, regents: please leave your politics out of campus

Published January 24, 2019

As our University goes through a transition period between President Eric Kaler and incoming president Joan Gabel, students, faculty and administrators — everyone who makes the University what it is...

Ababiy: Minneapolis’ 2019 policing budget looks promising

Published December 13, 2018

In law enforcement, community and community-oriented policing have become somewhat buzzwords. Their sudden spike in use makes you wonder — was the community not involved in policing before? But the word...

Ababiy: Lawsuit attempting to stall Minneapolis 2040 plan is ridiculous

Published December 6, 2018

Since the first draft of the Minneapolis 2040 Comprehensive plan was released, it's been a rollercoaster of a ride. The City's plan, required to be created by the State every ten years, is solely guidance...

Ababiy: Will America bounce back?

Published November 29, 2018

I saw Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Jon Meacham give a lecture at Northrup Auditorium this month, as part of the Humphrey School's Distinguished Carlson Lecture series. It was a packed house. The median...

Ababiy: Private universities that cater to the elite don’t need your funding

Published November 21, 2018

This week, following in the tradition of many men and women who have made mountains of money on Wall Street, a billionaire made a terrible financial decision with a lot of money.  Michael Bloomberg,...

Ababiy: CBD, artificial intelligence and Blockchain: aren’t you sick of it all?

Published November 15, 2018

In an October article in the Minnesota Daily, Wally's Falafel and Hummus owner Wally Sakallah detailed some ambitious plans for the Chatime's storefront. Chatime would leave for a spot near Tim Hortons...

Ababiy: We need to better protect Minnesota waterways

Published November 7, 2018

On the map, the Minnesota River, our state's namesake river, makes a slow and steady descent southeast through the farmland of southern Minnesota. At the Mankato, the river rises sharply north towards...

Ababiy: Our newfound civic energy cannot end at the polls

Published November 1, 2018

“The real test is going to be Election Day,” David Hogg, a founder of March for Our Lives, said to The Washington Post while doing an event in Minneapolis. “Young people and Americans in general...

Ababiy: Government inaction is pushing independent small businesses out of Dinkytown

Published October 25, 2018

"Every business tries to stay here as long as possible," said Jason Davis, co-owner of Dinkytown Optical, a business that has been operating in its namesake neighborhood for 45 years. The shop just finished...

Ababiy: Neighborhood organizations need the student voice

Published October 18, 2018

Developers have had their eyes on Dinkytown for a long time. One Minnesota Daily article from 2013 reported that "more than half of Dinkytown property owners surveyed by the Minnesota Daily have been approached...

Ababiy: Internet access in rural Minnesota remains a key issue

Published October 11, 2018

A couple weeks after high school graduation, I loaded up my car with way too many useless things and too little of what I actually needed and headed up north. I was going to be summer camp counselor. It...

Ababiy: Minneapolis 2040 housing plan is a step in the right direction

Published October 4, 2018

“Right now, there is a huge growth pressure in the city of Minneapolis and the entire region. Folks are coming and they need places to live. If we don’t make space for them, they are going to go where...

Ababiy: Power-relations in the world of academia are not free from sexual assault and misconduct

Published September 27, 2018

With a prestigious professorship at New York University, Avital Ronell was described as a "star" in the academic world. Decades of interesting work in comparative literature had given her an impressive...

Ababiy: University needs to focus on affordable housing, in advance of new development

Published September 20, 2018

At the University of Minnesota's Board of Regents meeting, University administrators presented their progress on the new Saint Paul Strategic Facilities Plan. The plan is bold and needed because as the...

Ababiy: Ensuring a livable wage for University of Minnesota workers

Published September 13, 2018

A recent New York Times article took a fascinating look at an interesting Harvard employee, Martha Bonilla. She came into the country illegally, hiding under a pile of bananas in a truck. Now, Ms. Bonilla...

Ababiy: Students have the responsibility to question and change society

Published September 6, 2018

Last fall, when orange leaves started to make their gentle tumble out of the trees, I visited the office of a favorite professor to discuss an assignment I was having trouble with. I took my place in the...

Ababiy: The NCAA’s shallow solutions to college basketball’s deep problems

Published April 30, 2018

The NCAA decided it was going to get serious about college basketball's slow moral collapse. It created a commission, headed by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, to propose solutions to college...

Ababiy: The national school discipline crisis plays out in Minneapolis

Published April 23, 2018

Minneapolis Public Schools has a school discipline problem. Black students made up 40 percent of all students across the district in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 school years, but were subject to an astonishing...

Ababiy: The crisis of violence in Native communities

Published April 16, 2018

There is a relatively little-known crisis experienced by Minnesota women. For many years, Native American women across the state and country have faced extreme levels of violence. Many women have disappeared,...

Ababiy: Keep mental health care providers and law enforcement separate

Published April 9, 2018

Since the shooting that occurred at their school, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas teens have showed a remarkable amount of bravery and courage. They’ve founded a national movement and helped orchestrate...

Ababiy: Now is the time to improve Minnesota’s student to counselor ratios

Published April 2, 2018

Applying to college was one of the most difficult things I have ever done. My parents never went to college or university, leaving me on my own to decipher all the acronyms and archaic processes. I was...

Ababiy: Don’t reject DED for Liberian residents of Minnesota

Published March 26, 2018

On March 30, thousands of Liberian Americans across Minnesota and the United States could live their last day as legal residents. Unless they want to face the risk of deportation, those who are not yet...

Ababiy: Dinkytown should be zoned

Published March 19, 2018

Last month, several Dinkytown businesses located to the right of the Varsity Theater on the corner of 13th Avenue Southeast were informed by their landlord that they would have to leave by mid-summer....

Ababiy: Prevent clustering in dorms

Published March 5, 2018

Political scientists have noticed that since the 1970s, Americans have begun to cluster into communities that share similar values and lifestyle preferences. It makes sense; if given the choice, someone...

Ababiy: The heroism of the Parkland survivors

Published February 26, 2018

We almost never see politics in its actual form, with its maneuvering, backroom deals, and “half-truthing.” For the most part, we see it in its derivatives — the spokesperson blabbering on CNN, Twitter...

Ababiy: Ending the police sexual misconduct loophole

Published February 19, 2018

“It’s painful. I didn’t know what to expect. I still really don’t,” is how Anna Chambers described her ongoing rape trial. Last year, two New York cops sexually assaulted her after taking her...

Ababiy: The Snapchat update is terrible

Published February 12, 2018

The new Snapchat update came for us like a jaguar in a "Planet Earth" clip stalking its prey in the jungle. We knew it was coming — Snapchat announced it November last year — just not when exactly...

Ababiy: Turning Point USA’s history of mingling in student elections

Published February 5, 2018

If you’ve heard about the Turning Point USA club on campus, it's probably from this fall’s vandalism incident, when various conservative and non-partisan student groups had their Washington Avenue...

Ababiy: No more ads on official University emails

Published January 29, 2018

The “customer stories” page of an email marketing platform boasts about the University of Minnesota athletics department’s use of its software to achieve “championship-level results.” The testimonial...

Ababiy: Has the career center reached out to you?

Published January 22, 2018

For my friend Khalid Hammami, a finance and management information systems junior, the Undergraduate Business Career Center at Carlson has been an important tool in his preparation for a career in consulting....

Ababiy: Let’s be proactive about opioids

Published January 16, 2018

All across the country, people are finding bodies in cars, on the streets and in bedrooms. They are of many ages, genders and social classes and they are the latest victims of our country’s opioid epidemic....

Ababiy: Stop scholarship displacement at the University of Minnesota

Published December 7, 2017

The University of Minnesota is giving me a decent amount of financial support this year to pay my tuition bill. A mix of grants and scholarships is allowing me to walk across the Washington Avenue Bridge...

Ababiy: Your laptop is annoying and bad for everyone

Published November 30, 2017

In high school, I loved sitting in the back of the classroom. I could blend in with my overcrowded class and not be the first person my teacher saw every period. There was also the added benefit of being...

Ababiy: The GOP tax bill is dangerous for higher education

Published November 24, 2017

Most of us at the University of Minnesota don’t pay large amounts of taxes. We aren’t making enough money to be taxed much, and we are “broke” college kids dedicated to our education. We aren’t...

Ababiy: The University must shape the state’s technological future

Published November 16, 2017

The University of Minnesota has a unique educational monopoly on the state. Unlike states of similar size like Colorado, Oregon and South Carolina, the University is the state’s sole high-activity research...

Ababiy: Stop big money from influencing local elections

Published November 2, 2017

High up in the glass towers of downtown, where you’ve always wished you could take a flex pic for your Instagram, Minneapolis corporate executives and developers have been in the midst of a summers long...

Ababiy: Why Vine was so special

Published October 26, 2017

I still remember the first Vine I ever made. It was on one of those mid-summer days in high school where all the fun activities you planned sitting in class had been done a million times and the late summer...

Ababiy: The NCAA does not care about academic integrity

Published October 19, 2017

College athletics can be very fun. Standing with thousands of other people and hollering letter after letter of the “Minnesota" in the Minnesota Rouser with your fellow Gophers after a touchdown is an...

Ababiy: Walking on Huron doesn’t have to be a dreadful experience

Published October 12, 2017

Walking on Huron Boulevard in Stadium Village reminds me of my middle school days, when I use to foolishly traverse suburban highways by foot. There is no parking lane that insulates you from traffic like...

Ababiy: Will the corporate world ever respect our privacy?

Published October 5, 2017

For about two months this summer, hackers snooped around the computer systems of Equifax, one of the three major credit reporting bureaus, obtaining nearly half the U.S. population’s names, dates of...

Ababiy: Tax the luxury apartments

Published September 28, 2017

Luxury apartments are rising near the University of Minnesota. The Hub on Washington Avenue is slowly gaining its outer sci-fi shell, day by day. A 25-story tower behind the Pillsbury Mill will potentially...

Ababiy: Don’t let Amazon jeopardize tomorrow

Published September 21, 2017

Amazon recently announced that it has begun an international search for the city that will house its second headquarters (HQ2). The company has resorted to building HQ2 because its original headquarters’...

Ababiy: My favorite spot on campus

Published September 14, 2017

While we labor to create the rest of our lives here, the Mississippi River beats incessantly against the concrete shoes of the Washington Avenue Bridge. While I stress about making that critical friend...

Ababiy: Attending UMN can seem daunting, but it shouldn’t be

Published September 7, 2017

I have been to many special places in Minnesota.  I’ve sat in the bed of my friend’s pickup, looking up at the eternal glow of the midnight stars, as he hurtled the little Ford around S-shaped...