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Short Takes

College students putting bars at risk

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Some of our college students are putting some of our bars and restaurants in a tough spot by not practicing public safety rules. One bar owner had to shut his doors early last weekend because students wouldn’t stop crowding together. Bar owners have a right to be concerned. State regulators sent emails to them warning of compliance checks at bars and restaurants. Of course that puts the burden on these owners to make sure employees and customers are complying with social distancing and wearing masks. Lesson 101 for college students: you can follow the rules and still have fun.

Consequences for risky actions

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Of course, college students can’t look toward Sturgis, South Dakota for any guidance. Despite the concerns raised by health officials, the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally was held last month. And now we are seeing why health officials were worried. The first reported coronavirus death that might be linked to the biker rally has been reported and at least 290 attendees in 12 states have tested positive for COVID-19. That proves the point there are consequences for our actions.

Governor asks for help

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On Thursday, Gov. Tim Walz and Minnesota Department of Health Commissioner Jan Malcom urged Minnesotans to double down in their efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19. “As we head into the fall and long winter ahead, we must double down in our fight to combat the spread of COVID-19,” Walz said. “We’re seeing concerning instances of community transmissions in our state, often linked to private gatherings like parties or weddings. Each of us needs to take responsibility and work hard to keep COVID-19 at bay in our communities,” Malxolm said. Their pleas follow the letter sent by Republican legislators, including Rep. Chris Swedzinski, urging Walz to improve his “tone and approach” toward businesses. The letter was in response to the governor’s email to bar and restaurant owners urging compliance. Well, this time the governor is asking. Are we listening.

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