Zoning issue or anti-Muslim bias?; Cougar boom; “Gangs in government”

Muslims aren't giving up on opening Islamic center in St Anthony

Star Tribune: "St. Anthony's rejection of a proposed Islamic center marks the first time in seven years that a new Muslim house of worship has been blocked by a local government in Minnesota. City leaders said the decision was solely a land-use issue, but Muslim leaders expressed fears that Minnesota may be joining the ranks of other states where proposed mosques and Islamic centers have been blocked by government amid anti-Islamic rhetoric and intense community resistance. 'This is the first one [in Minnesota] where we're seeing so much anti-Muslim hate involved,' said Lori Saroya, president of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations."

Mark Heuring blogs: "Should you hold the St. Anthony government responsible for disparaging remarks made in a public forum? I don't think so. I also dislike the notion that Islam, or any religion, cannot be criticized. As a Catholic, I hear my faith criticized quite often. While I dislike such criticism and find it unfair, I'm not inclined to sue those who disparage my faith. I would hope that the imam and his congregation would think hard about getting the federal government involved. I think St. Anthony would, in the end, welcome the congregation, but suing your way in isn't likely to help that happen."

Cougars recolonizing Midwest, one male at a time

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MPR News: "You may remember a couple of years ago, a lot of us were following reports of a cougar making its way around the northern Twin Cities suburbs. That adventurous cat eventually made it all the way to Connecticut, where it was killed by a car. Now, a report from the University of Minnesota published in The Journal of Wildlife Management says that cougars, or mountain lions, like that one are slowly expanding their range eastward returning to areas where they were killed off a century ago."

Former Gov. Jesse Ventura takes on 'gangs' in government

MPR News: "Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura has published a new book criticizing the two-party system. It's called 'DemoCRIPS and ReBLOODlicans: No More Gangs in Government.'"

Ely copper deposit estimate doubles

Duluth News Tribune: "Already reported as the world's largest untapped deposit of copper, the Twin Metals mine exploration area near Ely contains even more copper, nickel, platinum and other valuable metals than previously estimated, the mine's parent company said Wednesday."

Koch funded group critical of "corporate special interests"

Capitol View: "'A nearly half a billion dollar boondoggle taxpayers can't afford. Senator Bill Ingebrigtsen sided with corporate special interests and his policies are costing taxpayers,' an example of the flier reads. It calls the Vikings stadium deal a 'give away' to corporate special interests."

Special assessments to help fund F-M diversion

Forum of Fargo Moorhead: "Diversion Authority officials could be using a phrase more often that property owners who would benefit from a proposed Fargo-Moorhead diversion will likely dread: 'special assessments.' Residents ought not to panic, officials said, since they're still months - more likely years - away from determining who would cough up how much dough."

Flood-prone areas drove thin win for sales tax

Forum of Fargo Moorhead: "Eight of Fargo's 20 precincts gave a citywide sales tax measure the push it needed Tuesday to reach the supermajority required for passage, most of them on the city's south side."

Ontario guide fined for using dogs, boats to drive deer to hunters

Duluth News Tribune: "A Fort Frances, Ontario, hunting guide who catered to American clients has been fined after admitting that he used dogs and motorboats to drive deer toward his clients, who would shoot the deer while they were swimming."

Album review: Trampled By Turtles shines in 'Stars and Satellites'

Duluth News Tribune: "It's TBT in a slightly more reflective mood with some good fortune and a lot of touring miles under their belt. They can still let it rip with their brand of high octane speed-grass/thrash-grass/punk-grass/slam-grass (or whatever you want to call it), but here they're looking inward a bit more."

Miles Marshall Lews: Prince showed his roots on 'Sign O' The Times'

NPR Music: "Miles Marshall Lewis draws a line from Prince's concern for his community to the Hip-Hop Nation."