TruthToTell, Monday Sept 24-9AM: EMPOWERING U: Civic Engagement for the Disengaged; TruthToTell, Sept 17: VOTER PHOTO ID: Who Shouldn't Vote?


Tune in this coming Monday from 9:00 am to 10:00 am on KFAI, (90.3 FM in Minneapolis, and 106.7 FM in St. Paul) to catch our upcoming program:

Monday, September 24, 2012


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Collaborative efforts between and among advocacy and service groups seeking social justice and eliminating disparities – race, class and otherwise – are nothing new, but Heartland Democracy, Twin Cities RISE! and 180 Degrees have figured out how to take the time necessary to touch many age groups finding it tough to succeed in today’s world.

From Heartland’s website:

Empowering U is Heartland’s deep civic empowerment program. Through a series of guided discussions, participants discover the tangible benefits of involvement in community, politics, and self-governance. They develop the motivation and tools to become active, informed members of their communities. Heartland Democracy works with partner groups serving our neighbors with little or no experience of participation in community, government, or politics. Hence, Twin Cities Rise!, which provides employment training to adults who have faced challenges in gaining and holding jobs, is a natural host. TCR! understands that when their participants learn the methods for networking to achieve a community or political goal, that same network pays off in job networking, the identification of resources, financial stability, and wealth. In other words, when you can till the roots of democracy, you can cultivate the roots of the economy as well. Similarly, HD is working with juvenile ex-offenders under the auspices of 180 Degrees. Both cohorts are in St. Paul.

Policy analysis and progressive advocacy group Heartland Democracy is able to bring Empowering U to our St. Paul area neighbors at Twin Cities Rise!, 180 Degrees, and, later this year, Unity Center for Youth Leadership's high school internship program with the generous support of the F. R. Bigelow Foundation and the St. Paul Foundation. In this way, Heartland and cohorts are helping Minnesotans realize their own self-interest in the full range of citizenship.

Citizenship is really what TruthToTell has been about, lo, these past five years-plus. Civic engagement is the source of survival for our entire democracy.

TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI help you listen to Empowering U stories of the young men and women this program is meant to assist in gaining a grasp of public life and citizenship coming out of more troubled pasts.


TOM VELLENGA – President, Heartland Democracy

KEITH SIMONS – Director of Personal Empowerment, Twin Cities Rise!

MONICA SANDERS – Alumna of Twin Cities Rise! Program

JOE LASH – Juvenile Programs Director, 180 Degrees (residential program focusing on the transitional needs of formerly incarcerated individuals re-entering the community) 180 Degrees

ANDRE ISABELL – Evening Learning Center Program Coordinator, 180 Degrees

AND YOU! Remember – call and join the conversation – 612-341-0980 – or Tweet us @TTTAndyDriscoll or post on TruthToTell’s Facebook page!

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We continue our election coverage with the second of the Constitutional amendments facing Minnesota voters in November – the so-called Voter ID amendment – which would memorialize in cement a requirement that all voters present a government issued picture identification card in order to cast a ballot.

Pro-amendment forces, primarily Republicans who pushed this onto this year’s November election ballot – and even many Democrats who see little harm in such a requirement – claim that such a mandate will prevent voter fraud in a state with no substantial record of it.

Anti-voter ID amendment forces are as adamant about defeating this measure as many have been about the marriage amendment, that it is a costly and disenfranchising move, not just for the usual suspects, but for the fully one-third of Minnesotans who must use Election-Day Registration when voting.

Ultimately, this is about who should get to decide who runs this country, this state, these cities and so on. This is about power – and how you secure it for the future - - like gerrymandering in redistricting – preventing the other party from gaining any kind of foothold or holding a majority or running the government. Voting is just another frontier, is it not, in the acquisition and retention of power and control. The more citizens you can keep from voting, especially those likely to vote for the other guy, you’ll do it, right? 

A recent poll (KSTP) indicates both constitutional amendments are likely to pass.  Another poll has it closer.

As information trickles into the mainstream media about the effects Voter ID would have on the entire election system in Minnesota – as well as every other state where its appeared – powerful political forces are stepping up and denouncing it as much as those who proposed it in the first.

TTT's ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI try to sort out the pros and cons of passing or rejecting this proposed amendment to the State Constitution.


GOVERNOR ARNE CARLSON – former Minnesota Governor - OPPONENT of VoterID Amendment

REV. PAUL SLACK – President, ISAIAH - Twin Cities/Minnesota Faith-Based Community Coalition OPPOSED to VoterID; Pastor, New Creation Church, Minneapolis.

DAN McGRATH - Executive Director, Minnesota Majority – PRO-VoterID campaign leaders

DAN McGRATH - Executive Director, TakeAction-Minnesota - ANTI-VoterID campaign leaders