Et Cetera …

Not a perfect solution

The Minnesota Vikings and state of Minnesota broke ground on a new stadium this week. Fans cheered. Critics booed. They both have a point.

Fans know that the way stadiums get built these days is with large public subsidies. If states and cities say no, teams can pack up and move to places that want teams, and are willing to pay. And it’s not as if states and cities don’t subsidize other businesses they hope to retain.

Critics know the whole thing stinks. Pro teams play on the emotions of fans to get lawmakers to give them tax dollars. It’s dirty pool.

U.S. clearly lags behind

A report out this week reveals that students in Asian countries are dominating the world in math and science. There are caveats, including whether those nations are producing well-rounded students with critical thinking skills. However, the results also make clear that the United States is lagging too far behind.

U.S. Secretary of Education Duncan says the results are a “picture of educational stagnation” here. This is not good.

While students in the U.S. may be more “well-rounded,” the question remains: Are they working hard enough? Or, perhaps, are they being pushed enough?

Congrats, Red Rock

We congratulate Red Rock Center for the Arts in Fairmont for reaching a milestone: In February, the site will host its 100th show featuring area artists. At least one artist has been featured every month since 2005.

To celebrate, Red Rock is asking area artists who have not been previously featured to come forward. The facility hopes to attract those shy artists who might feel OK about sharing the spotlight with others.

To take part in the show, contact Red Rock at (507) 235-9262. Sonja Fortune is the executive director of the center.

Gold Cross serves town

Gold Cross ambulance is moving across town in Fairmont, finding quarters at Mayo Clinic Health System. Gold Cross is leaving the fire hall, where it leased space from the city. This once-generous arrangement became more formal – and more expensive – this year for the ambulance provider.

Whatever the case has been, we extend our thanks to Gold Cross for operating in Fairmont, something that is not a money-making proposition. The nonprofit says it is committed to providing a needed service here. We thank them for doing so.