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Sunday Poll: The 2nd Amendment

August 18, 2019 Featured, Politics/Policy, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: The 2nd Amendment
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This year has been violent:

When gun violence erupts in America, the local mayor is often the first to comfort families and try to heal their community. So far this year, there have been more than 35,000 incidents of gun violence in America — 261 of which are considered mass shootings — blamed for more than 9,200 deaths.

CBS News national correspondent Adriana Diaz spoke to four mayors, one of whom had to respond to a massacre less than two weeks ago. Nan Whaley of Dayton, Ohio, Bobby Dyer of Virginia Beach, Virginia, and Christine Hunschofsky of Parkland, Florida have all had to help their cities heal after a mass shooting. Washington, D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser addresses gun violence on a continual basis. Together, they’re part of a growing bipartisan chorus of local politicians pushing Congress to take action on guns. (CBS News)

St. Louis hasn’t been immune:

When classes resumed this week at public schools in St. Louis, some desks were noticeably empty as grief counselors greeted students returning from one of the deadliest summers for childrenin the city’s history.

Xavier Usanga, a 7-year-old student at Clay Elementary School, was killed by a stray bullet while playing near his home Monday, a day before he was to begin the second grade, his family said.

The boy’s death marked the seventh child under the age of 17 killed by gun violence in St. Louis this year, police said. All but two of the victims were slain since school let out in June, and police have expressed frustration about the unsolved killings. (ABC News)

Inevitably the 2nd Amendment comes up whenever guns, and gun regulations, are discussed. So it is the subject of today’s non-scientific poll:

Today’s poll will close at 8pm tonight. Wednesday I’ll have the results and my thoughts.

– Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Where Do You Get Your Food?

August 11, 2019 Featured, Retail, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Where Do You Get Your Food?
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It was ten years ago today that Schucks Markets opened their smaller urban format store, called Culinaria, in downtown St  Louis.

From August 11, 2009:

Culinaria – A Schnucks Market opened this morning at 315 North 9th Street. The store features a 21,000-square-foot main floor and a 6,000-square-foot mezzanine.  (Riverfront Times)

This was much smaller than their newer stores, from May 2018:

A Schnucks spokesman said the chain’s stores average over 60,000 square feet, but their size varies according to location, age and the customer base — ranging from the Culinaria location to stores exceeding 130,000 square feet. “We have several stores that are ‘smaller’ formats, some because of space limitations such as Culinaria (an urban format with limited space) and others because they were built many years ago when the typical supermarket was much smaller,” he said. (Supermarket News)

Culinaria has changed a lot over the last decade, primarily the product mix is much better than it was when it first opened. For a while I’ve been able to buy various King Arthur flours, recently they added Chinese hot mustard.

However, today’s non-scientific poll isn’t directly about Culinaria…at least not directly. Today’s poll is about where your food, primarily groceries, come from. Whether you go to a particular store, or have groceries delivered from there, it counts the same.  This is more about the types of stores where you shop, the answers are randomized.

Today’s poll closes at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Steve Stenger Get Leniency When Sentenced Friday?

August 4, 2019 Crime, Featured, Politics/Policy, St. Louis County, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Steve Stenger Get Leniency When Sentenced Friday?
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Former St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger will be sentenced on Friday in a pay-to-play scheme. From April 30, 2019:

St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger, a target of a yearlong undercover federal investigation into political favors traded for campaign contributions, was indicted by a grand jury Thursday on charges of theft of honest services.

The indictment was unsealed Monday as Stenger resigned in a letter to County Counselor Peter Krane, writing that “it is in the best interest of our County and my family.” (Post-Dispatch)

By the end of that week Stenger entered a guilty plea, he’d just be re-elected to a second term in November.

U.S. District Judge Catherine Perry will sentence Stenger on Aug. 9 — federal guidelines call for three to nearly four years in federal prison, although Perry is free to ignore the guidelines and the memos. (St. Louis Public Radio)

In addition to resigning the office, Stenger has given up his law & accountant licenses. Today’s poll is to see how readers feel about sentencing.

Today’s poll will close at 8pm.

—Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Halloween Be Moved To The Last Saturday In October?

July 28, 2019 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Halloween Be Moved To The Last Saturday In October?
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This blog was started on Halloween, specifically Sunday October 31, 2004. This year, the 15th anniversary, Halloween falls on a Thursday. Last year was a Wednesday, next year Halloween falls on a Saturday.

An online petition is trying to make Saturday the permanent day of the week when Halloween occurs, regardless of the 31st.

There are lots of reasons to hate holidays: traffic, awkward family reunions, expensive gifts that would wring a tear from anyone’s wallet. But if there’s one celebration absent from all of this holiday drama, it’s Halloween.

It’s too bad that, more times than not, the sugar-laden holiday is set right in the middle of the week, when would-be revelers have to get to bed early.

But there’s a petition aiming to change that. This time, instead of demanding#Justice for A$AP Rocky or storming Area 51, it’s lobbying to bump Halloween from October 31 to the last Saturday of the month. (CNN)

Here’s a little more.

A petition on Change.org has topped its goal of 75,000 signatures to change the popular holiday to the last Saturday of October. With that milestone behind it, it’s planning to send the request on to President Trump. (Fortune)

As of yesterday more than 95,000 signatures had been gathered, the goal increased to 150,000. This is the subject of today’s poll.

Today’s poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

 

Sunday Poll: Will St. Louis’ First ‘Blight Elimination Zone’ Be An Asset Within 15 Years?

July 21, 2019 Featured, Neighborhoods, North City, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Will St. Louis’ First ‘Blight Elimination Zone’ Be An Asset Within 15 Years?
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On Friday there was lots of activity in one North St. Louis neighborhood:

The Wells-Goodfellow neighborhood in St. Louis is undergoing a much needed transformation as part of a new Blight Elimination project.

The goal is to demolish 30 abandoned buildings in three days between Cote Brilliante Avenue, Maffitt Avenue, Clara Avenue and Belt Avenue. In addition, 130 vacant lots will be cleaned up for residents to enjoy. (KSDK)

The center point of this four blocks zone is Burd Ave & Wabada Ave.

At an event Friday, Dorsey and Pulte, along with Mayor Lyda Krewson, announced the city’s first Blight Elimination zone.

The zone will cover four blocks in the Wells Goodfellow neighborhood, comprised of more than 130 lots between Cote Brilliante Avenue, Maffitt Avenue, Clara Avenue, and Belt Avenue.

30 vacant buildings will be demolished, 12 by the City of St. Louis and 18 by the St. Louis Blight Authority. Additionally, the Blight Authority will clear eight acres of vacant lots and alleys with the goal of prepping them for future use and purchase.

The plan is to perform all of the removal in three days. (KMOV)

Here is some more specifics:

Tech billionaire Jack Dorsey, a St. Louis native and co-founder and CEO of both Square Inc. and Twitter, along with Detroit native Bill Pulte, whose grandfather founded national homebuilder Pulte Homes, were paying for the demolitions — $500,000 for a pilot program to completely clear more than 130 lots in a four-block area of the northwest St. Louis neighborhood hard hit by abandonment and vacancy.

“St. Louis is a lot easier to solve,” said Pulte, who several years ago launched the Blight Authority, a similar initiative in the Detroit area. “This problem can be solved. This problem can be solved in less than 15 years…. This is just about willpower at the government and private sector level.”

The new nonprofit he and Dorsey are funding, the St. Louis Blight Authority, aims to complement city efforts to tackle vacancy and demolish abandoned buildings, a key initiative for Mayor Lyda Krewson. This initial pilot phase will knock down 30 structures — 18 funded privately and 12 by the city — and then fund debris removal and beautification. Dorsey and Pulte hope to inspire other philanthropists to contribute to the effort and perhaps expand it to other city neighborhoods. (Post-Dispatch)

This effort is the subject of today’s non-scientific poll.

The poll will automatically close at 8pm tonight. Wednesday morning I’ll share my thoughts and the results.

— Steve Patterson

 

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