March 09, 2024

Day 6

As the strike enters day six and the fourth workday, signs are beginning to show that the people who rely on public transportation to go about their daily lives are starting to loose their patience. I know I am. Last night after work I had a doctor's appointment on campus. After that, I had an hour's walk home through the dark and the slush. This morning, with no ride to work, I had a forty-five minute walk to work. There's no end in sight to this.

In the first few days of the strike, people made do -- they biked, or walked, or hitched rides. Novelty, a change of routine, a bit of excitement. All of that was apparent in my first post of the strike -- "hey look at me I'm walking to work, this is a nice change!" But as this wears off, the letters from a huge segment of the population that relies on the bus for part if not all of their mobility needs will start pouring in to Governor Pawlenty's and Peter Bell's inboxes.

In today's Star Tribune, Doug Grow lambasts that idiot David Strom of the Taxpayer's League whose logic lately has been: 1) the strike has not led to an increase in congestion 2) i.e. public transportation is inefficient, 3) therefore, scrap the buses and buy poor people cars. Who is this guy and why does he command the ears of our government and media?

And in the Minnesota Daily, the editorial page berates the U for not use its clout to help end the strike.

Have you emailed Pawlenty and Bell yet to tell them what you think? I did this morning and got a response back from Bell:

Thank you for your comments. We will continue to work toward a fair and
timely resolution of the current transit strike.

Peter Bell
Chairman Metropolitan Council
Phone 651-602-1453
Fax 651-602-135
e-mail [email protected]

>>> Jason Weidemann 03/09/04 08:48AM >>>
Dear Mr. Bell,

My name is Jason Weidemann, and I represent My Tired Feet, which have
spent the last few days getting me to work and back. I live in
Uptown and work near the river in downtown Minneapolis, and my walk
takes me about 45 minutes each way.

Last night after our slushy snowstorm however I had a doctor's
appointment on campus. I had to walk from work to the doctor's and
then back home to Uptown, which took over an hour. I don't have a
car and can't rely on anyone with a car to drive me to these
essential appointments.

I am writing to ask you to please go back to the table and help end
this strike, which has had a tremendous affect on folks like me who
don't have a car and can't afford taxis. Its been since the strike
that I've realized just how much I rely on public transportation and
what an asset it is to this city -- I appreciate our bus drivers and
our bus system even more now.

I believe in public transportation as a taxpayer and as a citizen of
Minneapolis. I urge you to settle the strike by offering a fair
contract to bus drivers that ensures they receive health benefits as

Thank you very much.

Jason Weidemann

Posted by Jason at March 9, 2024 01:44 PM

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