Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily noontime(ish) digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.
In the most annoying will he/won’t he spectacle since The Decision, Medaria Arradondo announced this morning that he will not seek a third term as Minneapolis Police Chief. The first Black chief in Minneapolis history, Arradondo, who spent 32 years on the force, says his retirement is unrelated to the events following the murder of George Floyd by an MPD officer. There’s lots to think about here, for example, why did he repeatedly refuse to comment on his future during the months leading up to the ballot question vote, even as he encouraged people to vote against it? Isn’t it weird that we’ve spent so much time over the last several months fretting over his possible retirement instead of asking about his plan to reform the department should the ballot measure fail to pass? And of course, who will Mayor Frey pose with now?
Minnesota’s Omicron Patient Zero: ‘Please, Get the Vax’
The Omicron variant made its way to Minnesota last week, catching a ride with a New York City anime convention attendee named Pete McGinn. It turns out McGinn, a 30-year-old Minneapolis-based healthcare analyst, isn’t just MN’s first Omicron case—with a positive test from November 23, he might be patient zero in the U.S. He’s since done a little media tour, speaking with everyone from the New York Times to ABC News about his COVID diagnosis and experience. The Star Tribune also caught up with McGinn this weekend, and he told the paper the diagnosis surprised him because his symptoms were… not all that bad at all, actually, something he attributes to being vaxxed and boosted. His message to the Omicron-fearful, correspondingly? Get vaxxed and boosted.
Protestors to Prosecutors: See You in Court
In November 2020, Minnesota state troopers arrested 646 protestors on I-94, who were there in response to Trumpy post-election shenanigans and additional social injustices, which are in no short supply these days. The demonstrators, who were supposedly arrested for their safety, were detained up to five hours. While many of those arrested have since accepted plea deals, 280 have refused and are demanding that prosecutors either drop the charges or bring them to trial, J.D. Duggan reports in the Minnesota Reformer. By foot-dragging and gumming up the judicial works, the defendants are essentially protesting the state’s infringement of their right to protest. “We’re trying to be as big of a nuisance as possible,” said Caroline Dahl, one of the protestors.
LOOK BELOW FOR ADORABLE OTTER NEWS!
As anyone on the internet knows, otters are hella cute, super goofy creatures who know how to have a good time. Actual proof: The video below. When the winter storm hit Grand Marais, this sweet baby angel came out to frolic like a puppy discovering snow for the first time. That’s it. That’s the otter news. Simply take in the joy from this pure moment of playfulness.