By Robert Williams


It was not difficult to appreciate the area in which we live after seeing the headlines that came out of the Fourth of July holiday and the ensuing days, especially in Minnesota’s metro areas.

Holidays like the Fourth are meant to celebrate the country and honor those who died defending this land and its ideals and the originators who put to paper what the United States could be. 

Go ahead, have a few beers, fire up the pontoon, light off a few fireworks.

Unfortunately, it is a literal fact that too many Americans were punching the throttle on over-celebrating their misplaced freedoms just prior to dying for all the wrong reasons. Or worse, others are dead because of an individual or communal stupidity.

It brings an entirely different meaning to “intolerable acts,” which were originally punitive measures imposed by the British Parliament in an effort to control the American colonies.

For the record, I’m all for a sixer, boating and fireworks and maybe a mandatory history lesson for people on these political holidays.

What I find disturbing is people going absolutely bonkers. Some of these lunatics spent the day rampaging a self-centered portrayal of their personal freedoms that ended in death.

Juxtapose that nonsense with the clutched ideal of the United States as an idyllic nation we should all hold on high.

It isn’t.

I’m willing to suggest we don’t even live in a smart nation. 

A favorite phrase I’ve used for a long time to describe my mostly solitary lifestyle is “an island of sanity in a sea of idiots.” 

That could certainly be interpreted as base or egotistically bombastic, but bear with me. If you made it through the holiday without killing anyone or grossly violating the law, kudos to you and welcome to Sanity Island. 

Out in the rough seas of Idiocy, it was a tough holiday break for some people.

I greatly appreciate not having to run anything like the following on the front page of our small town newspaper. 

An elderly man with a box of vodka in the backseat of his car ran over a 15-year-old kid on a bike in a southern suburb of the Twin Cities. The man did not bother to call 911, but told officers responding to the scene he didn’t realize he hit anyone until he saw the body lying in the road. The man was not over the legal limit, but there is now a family with a dead child because this guy allegedly sneezed and ran over the kid after knocking back a couple vodka Sprites before driving.

An 18-year-old Chicago man traveled by bus all the way to Big Lake after talking to an 11-year-old girl on Snapchat. The girl had told the man she was 17, but not where she lived. He was able to locate her via the app. The heartbroken and misguided lothario was sent packing with his gifts and flowers back to Chicago and he should feel lucky that’s all he got for his efforts.

Four people were injured by gunfire a block from where I used to live in St. Cloud during college. A heated conversation took place between a group of four and the suspects who fled in a vehicle after unloading head and chest shots on the group on foot. No arrests have been made.

A Duluth teenager murdered a 17-year-old after being called “a snitch.” The shooter had been placed on probation five days prior for bringing a gun to an Area Learning Center in May and for a 2021 incident in which he brought a gun to East high school.

I don’t know…red flags, anyone?

Brooklyn Center, after 1 a.m., on a Wednesday, two groups of people fired over 100 shots at each other in a residential parking lot.

Downtown Minneapolis footage of morons blasting buildings and people with what appeared to be semiautomatic Roman candles collected all kinds of likes, shares and retweets on social media worldwide.

A recent high school graduate from Brooklyn Park is dead from a blunt force chest injury due to a fireworks accident. 

Fireworks deaths were also reported in California and Indiana.

Hooray, America!

A body was found Tuesday in the Mississippi River just north of the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport.

A body was found along the shoreline of Crystal Lake in Robbinsdale Tuesday afternoon.

A body was found on the Moorhead shore of the Red River Wednesday afternoon.


What a mess.