Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily 1 p.m.(ish) digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.
‘I Took Horse Dewormer, and I’m Still Here‘
Is that the kind of thing you want to hear from a physician and a gubernatorial candidate? If so, Dr. Neil Shah is your dude. On Tuesday night, he was one of five GOP candidates to admit they’ve had COVID-19 and still oppose vaccine mandates during a forum in Wayzata. “I don’t think it’s the job of the press and politicians to tell you how to make these decisions,” said Michelle Benson, who chairs the health and human services finance and policy committee. (Ed. note: In many cases it is quite literally the job of government officials to tell people what to do.)
The Almighty Lord’s opinion was also taken into consideration when vaccine mandates came up. “That’s between you, your doctor, and your god,” explained Mike Murphy, ominously. The Lexington mayor said he lost his sense of taste and smell for three weeks during his time with COVID. God apparently told him to stay unvaccinated, though, because he’s not getting it anytime soon. Paul Gazelka (who is vaccinated but anti-mandate) and Scott Jensen (an unvaccinated physician) were the other two COVID survivors who are “meh” about mandates.
Local Sheriff Gets Drunk at a Work Conference, Decides to Drive
Hennepin County Sheriff David Hutchinson released a lawyered-up statement yesterday that, yep, he was probably intoxicated when he rolled his county-owned car while driving home from a work-related event at 2:30 a.m. That work-related event? The Minnesota Sheriffs’ Association’s winter conference at the Arrowwood Resort near Alexandria. According to an itinerary shared online, the event included sessions on handling the media, a talk on how to cope with an OIS (officer involved shooting), and a jam session from cop-rock band the Brassholes. Hutchinson referred to his decision as “inexcusable.” Meanwhile, he’s in the hospital with hip, head, and rib injuries. Once the results of the tox screening come back, police will determine whether or not to press criminal charges. Getting drunk at a work function is a time-honored (and often pretty fun!) tradition around the world, just smash that Uber button on your phone when you’re ready to head home. Stay safe, everyone.
Report: Amazon Treats Minnesota Workers Like Shit
A new report by the National Employment Law Project and Awood Center more or less confirmed the obvious: Amazon, the world’s largest retailer, treats warehouse workers in its fulfillment centers horribly, including those in Shakopee. The rate of injuries for those workers—10.2 per 100 full-time workers in 2020—far outpaces all other studied industries, as the Star Tribune illustrates in this helpful/disturbing graph. “The first thing that we realized when we started looking into this is just how off the charts the injuries are,” Irene Tung, one of the report’s authors, told the Strib. “There’s this sense of paranoia; [workers] just know that they have to be pushing themselves to the brink or they will be fired.” Additionally, the report discovered that Black workers in Shakopee make 63% of what their white counterparts earn.
Amazon declined to comment on the report, as they’re (allegedly) managed by craven PR-obsessed goblins who, until recently, did the bidding of a rocket-obsessed supervillain. A sliver of potential good news: Last week, federal labor relations officials ruled that workers at Amazon’s Bessemer, Alabama, warehouse will get a second crack at unionizing, having discovered that the (allegedly) monstrous company interfered with the failed union election earlier this year, Politico reports.
Beloved YouTube Weatherman Predicts Nasty Friday Snowstorm
Frankie McDonald, the delightfully animated amateur meteorologist from Nova Scotia, recently issued this dire forecast for Minnesota. Good looking out, Frankie!