THUMBS UP: This week, the eyes of the state are turned toward southern Minnesota and New Ulm, as the 150th anniversary of the US-Dakota War is observed.
Like any war, the causes of this war were complex, with many hurts and wrongs adding up until an aggrieved people felt they had no choice but to go to war. Misunderstandings and poor judgments on both sides led to a six week conflict that left hundreds dead, a whole section of the state abandoned, and ultimately, a whole people exiled from their homeland.
A whole week of events is planned in New Ulm, from scholarly symposiums on the causes of the war, to dedications of historic sites and commemorative plaques.
The commemoration of the war has evolved over the years. We're certain the 150th commemoration is much different in focus than the 100th, and certainly from the earlier anniversaries when the wounds and memories were fresher. We are hoping people will approach this anniversary as an opportunity to learn, to reflect, and ultimately resolve to move ahead into a future where differences in culture are met with tolerance, respect and acceptance.
School year nears
THUMBS UP: It is a sign of things to come. The Journal on Friday started printing school lunch menues for the Sleepy Eye School District, which is part of an early start pilot project.
It will be a couple of weeks before everyone else starts back to school after Labor Day, but kids can start to feel the little prickles of apprehension on the backs of their necks, we're sure.
Actually, we're sure some are looking forward to the start of the new school year.
We wish all students an exciting new school year, but also wish them to enjoy the last couple of weeks of vacation, one of the sweetest times of the year.
Good crop report
THUMBS UP: There's no doubt that drought has wreaked havoc in farm fields across the country. Many Minnesota farmers have felt the bite, but for the most part the state has been spared the most dreadful impact.
Minnesota's latest crop report showed 77 percent of Minnesota's corn crop to be fair to good condition. Fair to good yields, coupled with the rise in corn prices brought on by the drought, should bode well for the state's farmers.