An Oct. 10 letter writer says that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are “disingenuous and evasive” for not answering the question if they would pack the Supreme Court. “The point of campaigning is to let voters know where you stand on the issues,” he writes. “The American people deserve to know before the election.”

Well! While we’re on the topic of such things, have you managed to pin President Donald Trump down yet on whether he’ll even accept the results of the election? That would seem to be an even more pressing issue.

Steve Hoffmann, Anoka

• • •

The Oct. 10 writer has the court-packing question upside down. The question of packing the court is not one for the future. We are watching the Republican Party pack the Supreme Court today in plain sight of the American people.

Many Republican senators, led by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, objected to acting at all on the Merrick Garland nomination because it was an election year but now support acting on the Barrett nomination in an election year. If Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed, as seems likely, this mass abandonment of constitutional duty and any pretense of principle on the part of the Republican senators will have succeeded in packing the Supreme Court. The question for the Democrats, if they retake the presidency and control of the Senate, is what if anything they will do to unpack the Supreme Court and restore its legitimacy as an independent third branch of government. My answer, after 52 years as an attorney, is, I hope so. The American people deserve no less.

Jeremy Lane, Minneapolis

GOVERNMENT

This is how you get our votes

When I communicate with my elected representatives, as I do from time to time, almost all of them thank me for my input with a form letter. U.S. Sen. Tina Smith is one of two exceptions. She always responds with a detailed, issue-specific explanation of her positions in reasonable detail. The other is state Rep. Jim Davnie. They both have my thanks, my respect and my support!

Mary Ann Hanson, Minneapolis

UNREST

Do these headlines sound familiar?

I was reading Saturday’s paper and came across three articles I had not heard about before:

1. The day before, Friday, police officers in Madison, Wis., marched with clubs into a group of 450 peaceful demonstrators without any prior warning. Several demonstrators were injured.

2. Black students at universities across the country were arguing for their right to have more involvement in campus decisions.

3. An opinion piece described white racism as the “desire to maintain the status quo, yielding slightly if necessary to keep the peace, but not altering the existing power structures controlled by the white community.” This privilege says, “We have to go more slowly,” and fails to appreciate that we have “not the luxury of time, and that justice is not a function of time.”

I checked the date on the paper and saw it was Saturday, Oct. 4, 1969. Yup, 1969. For math-challenged readers, that’s 51 years ago. I don’t know why my parents saved this newspaper in a box of old family photos that I came across this week. But I am amazed what the articles say about those times and today. For anyone who believes that systemic problems do not exist in our country, get real. For anyone who wishes to go back in time when “America was great,” please let us know when that was. It certainly was not 1969, unless you wanted to be in Vietnam. According to that Saturday’s paper, three Americans were killed and 18 were wounded on Friday during heavy fighting.

Kathryn A. Helmke, Andover

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