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Riverblast 2014

THUMBS UP: Riverblast is kind of an inspired idea. If you want to teach people and get them thinking about the importance of the Minnesota River, a good way to do that is to get them to have fun by the river. Riverblast has been doing that for several years now, inviting people to come to Riverside Park in New Ulm for a couple of days of music, food and fun. While they are there, they may pick up some information about the river, its condition, and what you can do to improve it.

In the meantime, there will be plenty of good food, free entertainment, and even a few camping spots down by the river. We hope people will have a good time, and pick up a little river lore while they are at it this weekend.

Minnesotans in ISIS

THUMBS DOWN: It is disturbing to hear that some young men from Minnesota have been traveling to join the Islamic State rebels in Syria. This week two Minnesota men were reportedly killed while fighting with this upstart group of Islamic fanatics.

We feel little sympathy for them. You reap what you sow, as St. Paul said in Galatians. Those who wish to take up arms with a group that massacres unarmed villagers, steals women and children of other faiths and executes those who don’t abide by their strict beliefs, leaving their bodies on display for days, as a UN panel announced this week, should expect no sympathy.

It is worth studying how these people are recruited, however, so others can be warned against the propaganda ISIS spreads on social media about joining with comrades and “fighting the good fight.”

Autumn athletics

THUMBS UP: High school football season has begun, bringing back the prospect of spirited competition on crisp, cool evenings, pep bands playing, people warming themselves with hot chocolate and warm apple cideer. It’s a great time of year. And let’s not forget the talented volleyball teams that are playing as well.

We wish all our area sports teams best of luck this fall.

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