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Bachmann Prays for Anti-Gay Christian Punk Group

Michelle Bachmann made the news again in early December for her activity with the group You Can Run But You Can't Hide.

From their own website, You Can Run's mission statement is to re-affirm traditional judeo-christian beliefs with today's youth. "Mission Statement: Re-shaping America by re-directing our future generations to our Judeo-Christian/Constitutional foundation morally and spiritually through education and music," it reads.

In late November Bachmann met with members of the group and said a prayer to bless their activities, saying they were absolutely on track with God's wishes, Right Wing Watch reports. The group speaks at high school assemblies and forwards their agenda through music and entertainment.

You Can Run has previously come under fire for the staunchly anti-gay views it promotes. On air during their radio show, Bradlee Dean, the groups's spokesman, said that Muslims calling for the extermination of gays are potentially more moral than American Christians.

"Muslims are calling for the executions of homosexuals in America," Dean said. "This just shows you they themselves are upholding the laws that are even in the Bible of the Judeo-Christian God, but they seem to be more moral than even the American Christians do, because these people are livid about enforcing their laws. They know homosexuality is an abomination."

He then continued by debunking any sense of credibility that the show may have had left when he began citing absolutely erroneous statistics simply for the advancement of his position.

"The bottom line is this...they [homosexuals] play the victim when they are, in fact, the predator," Dean said. "On average, they molest 117 people before they're found out. How many kids have been destroyed, how many adults have been destroyed because of crimes against nature?

Mark Knief, president of Minnesota's Log Cabin Republicans, was outraged at the comment, calling into question why Bachmann would choose to associate with them given the state of her reputation. This should be a grave concern with any candidate that is supporting them."

Bachmann Accuses Black Farmers of Fraud

Rep. Michelle Bachmann along with Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) alleged in late September that the National Black Farmer's Association's own data proves fraud on a national scale in a settlement known as Pigford II.

The settlement is designed to distribute money to black individuals who were unfairly denied federal funding and assistance during the 80's and 90's due to racial discrimination, City Pages reports.

Bachmann has said that the discrimination claim process was subject to "massive and widespread fraud and abuse," Free Republic reports. King said that he believes the Obama administration to be willfully ignoring the abuse in the same publication.

Their reasoning, City Pages reports, is based off of data provided by the National Black Farmer's Association stating that 18,000 black farmers exist in the United States. In the Pigford II case over 94,000 claims have been filed so far; that disparity is the cause for such ire.

Collin Peterson, a Minnesota Congressman who took part in crafting the settlement, called Bachmann and King's allegations "simply nonsense", City Pages reports. "The reason they're not in farming is because they couldn't get financing. That's part of their argument," Peterson said.

The whole controversy is made significantly more interesting considering the fact that Bachmann's own family has willfully accepted farmer's assistance from the government.

Her opinion is not held party-wide, though. The measure passed 256-152 in the house in late November. As Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) said, "We are correcting historic wrongs that should never have occurred in the first place."

Police Brutality Suit Leads To Policy Changes

Though the sensationalized case of Derryl Jenkins is now almost two years old, the Minneapolis Chief of Police Tim Dolan just released an internal memo Dec. 1 addressing the situation. Blaming improper training in group handcuffing situations for the unnecessary violence of the arrest, Dolan said that the department has since changed its policies and training, City Pages reports.

The video of the incident from a police car's dashboard camera is available on Youtube. On Feb. 19, 2009, Derryl Jenkins was pulled over for allegedly speeding on North Penn Avenue. After Jenkins exited his vehicle, the officer felt that he should be handcuffed, at which point the two began physically fighting. As the scuffle continued, more squad cars arrive and the officers join in. After it appears Jenkins is subdued, it appears that the police continued to hit him, both punching and kicking. As a result of the incident, Jenkins needed seven stitches, City Pages reports.

The Star Tribune reports that immediately after the incident Dolan submitted the video to the Department's internal Affairs and Training Units in addition to calling on the FBI for an external review of the case. Though the FBI's ruling has not been released yet, the Department seems to consider the case effectively closed.

In the memo, Dolan writes that none of the involved officers have been disciplined, but the policies in question have been changed. "I thought we were using excessive force in some group arrests and you thought I was being unfairly critical. We were both right. The reality is that those involved officers were doing what they were taught. None of them were disciplined, but we changed our policies and our training," Dolan wrote.

Mylan Masson, a Minneapolis police officer, told the Star Tribune that kicking is not advised by the department, though he explained the legitimacy of the officer's actions. "There is kicking that can be used for passive aggression," Masson said. An officer would kick a suspect who is not actively resisting to make sure they aren't reaching for a gun, for instance.

Still, the change is welcome as the brutality present in the later sections of the video cannot be denied.

Michelle Bachmann Ranked In Most Embarrassing Re-Elects of '10

Michelle Bachmann, voice of Minnesota's sixth district in the House of Representatives, was ranked the number one most embarrassing re-elected member of Congress in 2010 by a citizen's watchdog group, City Pages reports.

The group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, is a non-profit based out of Washington D.C. dedicated to "promoting ethics and accountability in government and public life by targeting government officials -- regardless of party affiliation -- who sacrifice the common good to special interests," their website says. This is the fifth year they have compiled the list.

City Pages reports that her inclusion in the list seems rather self-evident. "She pumps out gaffes and pants-on-fire moments with such gay abandon that it's mostly a matter of picking the best of the best," it said, going on to state that the entry for her in the report didn't even touch on several of her more publicized faux pas, saying that "Perhaps space was a consideration."

In the entry, CREW focused on the illegal rally Bachmann planned and her bout of McCarthyism when she accused several members of Congress of harboring "anti-American" sentiments, going so far as to accuse Barack Obama of having ties with terrorists.

The rally was held to oppose healthcare reform in 2009. Not only did Bachmann use her official government website to organize the demonstration on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, she then neglected to secure the proper permits for the rally. This was in direct violation of House rules, which prohibit "grassroots lobbying" and soliciting a particular member's position on Representatives websites.

The other claim relating to McCarthyist politics referenced a 2008 appearance on Hardball with Chris Matthews. During her time on the show she called for a deep examination to root out members of congress with anti-American leanings, calling Obama out in particular.

She did partially apologize for her remarks several days later, saying that she should not have gone so far as to use the phrase 'anti-American', but she has since allowed her true colors to show. In March of 2010 she referenced the comments she had made on the show at a fundraising rally. ""I said I had very serious concerns that Barack Obama had anti-American views," Rep. Bachmann said. "And now I look like Nostradamus."

Gopher's Head Coach Chosen

Joel Maturi has recently returned to Minneapolis with Jerry Kill, the fruit of a seven month search for a replacement head coach for the Gopher football program

Kill previously held the position of head coach at Northern Illinois University, where he led the team to a bowl game all three years of his tenure there, WCCO News reports. It seems that Maturi fulfilled his promise to bring a head coach with experience in the field, though he isn't the big name the program was hoping for.

Kill has already demonstrated some level of competence to fans at TCF Bank Stadium. While coaching Northern Illinois, Kill led the team to a 34-23 victory over the Gophers earlier this year.

Kill also coached at Southern Illinois, Emporia State, and Saginaw Valley State University before Northern Illinois. He doesn't have any experience in a conference as competitive as the Big 10, but he promises to pour himself into his new role in Minnesota. "I can promise all the people at the University of Minnesota and throughout the entire state that I am going to give them every single ounce that I can give them," Kill said in a statement released by the U.

Fan reaction has been less than optimal, said KSTP Eyewitness News. Though several fans interviewed in person expressed excitement at the possibility of a turnaround for the Gophers, many more posted to the team's facebook page to express their outrage and disappointment at the hire. Some vowed that they would not purchase season tickets for the 2011 season, one poster even going so far as to say "I have never seen a football program aspire to mediocrity."

Kill certainly has his work cut out for him. Inheriting a program that went 3-9 last season, it seems that he'll be rebuilding from the ground up. He has a history of repairing struggling programs, though, leading the Huskies to back-to-back-to-back bowl appearances during his time there and posting winning records at all of his previous positions, too. Whether he'll be able to do the same with the Gophers and quell the criticism leveled at him, only time will tell.

Family of Three Killed by Runaway Driver

A woman and her two children were killed early Sunday morning after a reckless driver ran a red light in the midst of a high-speed chase, State Troopers say.

The Star Tribune reported an interview with a representative from the State Patrol saying that the chase began on interstate 94 westbound near the Dowling exit. After the Trooper turned on his lights to initiate a traffic stop, the driver accelerated quickly away and exited the highway, eventually reaching North 2nd Street. The officer dropped back at this point, realizing that the suspect was endangering other drivers on the road.

When he reached the intersection with Broadway, the suspect ran the red light and broadsided Amanda Thomas's vehicle. KSTP Eyewitness News aired an interview with an eyewitness saying that she went through the intersection five seconds after the crash occurred. She said that Thomas's car spun rapidly after the collision, ejecting 12-year-old Andre into a nearby building.

The Trooper reported that Amanda and Andre died immediately on the scene, while 3-month-old Akeron passed away in the hospital later that day. He also said that while the incident was still under investigation, the Trooper pursuing the suspect was not at fault in this situation. "It appears that trooper really could not have done anything else this make this outcome any different. It was truly in the hands of the fleeing suspect."

Where'd it go?

Did another writeup on this article in City Pages - I don't know where it went. My internet has been inconsistent, it must have been eaten by the system. I haven't the time to rewrite it all by weekend's conclusion, so I'll just do next week's with more time to spare, I suppose.

Mobbed at McDonald's

The Minnesota Daily recently did an investigation into the happenings at one of the hottest spots on campus any given weekend: the Dinkytown McDonalds. Reporter Kyle Porter was on-scene for 4 and a half hours on a Friday night to observe the insanity that is large groups of drunk college students.

The evening begins calmly, the Daily reports. At 10:30 p.m. there are a mere 20 customers inside the store. The employees are relaxed for the time being, taking advantage of the small break in rushes between dinner and drunk. Only a half hour later, though, the crowd has swelled in size until around 50 people are waiting just to place an order.

With all this business and the obscene crush of people, some form of authority is necessary to keep the peace and maintain a smooth flow of customers. The staff, the Daily reports, refers to their security as "hospitality" personnel. "They're our hospitality people," owner Dave Choate told the Daily. "They're just there to help and make sure nothing gets out of hand."

What the Daily discovered as the night progressed is that though people go to McDonald's for the food, that is hardly the only reason they stay once arriving. Between a band at the top of the steps, sauce fights on the patio and a freestyle rap battle just outside the door at various points throughout the night, there are ample attractions to convince patrons to lengthen their stay.

As the night drew to a close, the Daily cataloged the damage to the building. Fries littering tables, wrappers scattered willy-nilly and bathrooms absolutely decimated, the price of being a drunken staple is made painfully clear. After 3:00 a.m. on the dot, the restaurant locks its doors and the employees begin the task of cleaning up to do the whole thing again tomorrow.

Gopher Basketball Takes Another Hit

Continuing the chain of unfortunate happenings on the Gopher basketball team, Tubby Smith announced Thursday that junior guard Devoe Joseph was suspended indefinitely because of off-court issues

Joseph averaged 9.4 points last season, stepping up to try and compensate for the loss of Al Nolen's after his suspension last year, the Minnesota Daily reports. Now that Joseph has himself been suspended, the Gophers must work to fill another hole on an already embattled team.

Joseph's suspension came after undefined off-court events, Smith told the Star Tribune. Joseph sat out of Monday's exhibition game against Winona State University and though Smith attributed it to a leg injury, he told the Tribune that he was "having some off court issues," too. Even with a formalized suspension, the coach remains vague on the underlying cause.

"He's got some off-court issues," Smith said. "Hopefully he gets what he has to get done so he can get back on the board at some point in time during season. And at this stage, I'm not sure when that will be."

Even so, the Daily reports that though the future is unknown, the outlook need not be overly grim. According to the Daily, Smith said later that evening that Joseph was aware he let the team down and that it doesn't take long to recover from them.

If Joseph's suspension lasted only one week, said the Tribune, he would still miss five games - a serious blow to the Gophers. After the legal trouble of various players and even the coach himself over the last year, cited the Tribune, the team will band together and do their best to bounce back again.

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