Handheld phones aren’t the only driving distraction

Mike KnaakEditorial, Print Sartell - St. Stephen, Print St. Joseph0 Comments

Put down the phone and drive. That’s now the law in Minnesota. The Legislature passed and Gov. Tim Walz signed the bipartisan hands-free bill that bans the use of handheld cell phones. The measure aims to reduce distracted-driving crashes.  The bill requires drivers to be hands-free, but allows use of voice-activated command calls and other functions such as GPS navigation

Along with news, daily email flood brings scams, spam, quirky claims

Mike KnaakColumn, Print Sartell - St. Stephen, Print St. Joseph0 Comments

The U.S. Mail once arrived in a stuffed sack worthy of Santa on Christmas Eve. When I started in journalism five decades ago, the daily mail bag delivered news tips, letters from readers and press releases that often provided background information and ideas for stories. When the big bag landed in the newsroom, a clerk would sort each piece, putting

Ban e-cigarettes in public places, raise tobacco sales age

Mike KnaakEditorial, Print Sartell - St. Stephen, Print St. Joseph0 Comments

There’s smoke in the air at the state Capitol this spring as the Legislature grinds toward a May 20 adjournment. Two measures that would protect our clean indoor air and health are up for debate. The Legislature should pass and Governor Walz should sign these actions. The House overwhelming passed HF349 that expands the definition of smoking to ensure Minnesota’s

Urban explorers risk injury, arrest for social media fame

Mike KnaakColumn, Print Sartell - St. Stephen, Print St. Joseph0 Comments

Two popular hobbies – one pursued in the real, physical world and one practiced in the virtual, digital world – converged in Watab Township last week. For years, adventurers have found excitement as urban explorers – roaming through abandoned buildings, caves and tunnels. Media attention and technology popularized and glamorized the activity fueling increased interest. Recent television shows such as

College scam highlights large problems

Connor KocklerColumn, Opinion, Print Editions, Print Sartell - St. Stephen, Print St. Joseph0 Comments

It was a shock to many Americans when federal prosecutors in Massachusetts announced charges against 50 people for one of the biggest college admissions scams in American history. As a college student myself, it was disappointing to see a system that advertises itself as being based on merit and effort was being blatantly undermined. Unfortunately, with how important college is

Gun safety skeptics weren’t entirely right

Mike KnaakEditorial, Print Sartell - St. Stephen, Print St. Joseph0 Comments

A year has passed. A year ago, we were focused on demonstrations and rallies supporting gun control safety legislation following the killing of 17 people at a Florida high school. Skeptics doubted the public support would result in laws such as universal background checks, bans on assault-style weapons or high capacity magazines. These measures are widely supported, for example, more