And now this message from Save Lake Calhoun

Someone has hacked (Update: the domain name expired and was repurchased) the Save Lake Calhoun website following Monday’s Court of Appeals ruling that the Department of Natural Resources doesn’t have the authority to approve the changing of Bde Maka Ska from the one honoring a proponent of slavery of Native American genocide.

Well played on the minimalist approach, hero.

Archive: Venture capitalist is behind Save Lake Calhoun ‘group’ (NewsCut)

  • Jack

    Was that an actual website before?

  • Guest

    I gotta admit, just a clean page with one simple message and no slurs is a classy way to hack.

    I don’t like their vandalism, but at least it does not detract from their message and cause me to disdain the proponents.

    • merry_rose

      They’re good. The domain name ownership expired, so when the owner didn’t renew, another enterprising individual snapped it up. Well played.

  • MrE85

    Not all heroes wear capes.

  • Guest

    IF they had worked on a groundswell, engaged the locals (and businesses with Calhoun in their name) and made reasoned explanations of just who this Calhoun was, asking for personal reactions and gently promoting a replacement……

    It would have taken a lot longer than pressuring a few politicians, but the acceptance of the change would have been wide and permanent. AND supportive of the next conversation on U of M bldgs.

    • Actually, they did exactly that.

      But it wasn’t enough to counter the white supremacy. Because you can’t logically engage white supremacy.

      Just look at the how the Republicans in the Senate are losing their **** at the mere mention of a non-white aspect of history.

      You can’t reason with these people

      • jon

        It only takes one person to throw a fit.

        You can engage with nearly the whole community, but one guy who throws a fit, and gets on the right (far right) media outlets can get a go-fund-me to run a lawsuit, and a counter media campaign…

        heck one wealthy white supremacists cuts out the need for a go-fund-me.

      • Mike

        Was “white supremacy” behind the Court of Appeals ruling? Because that’s what this alleged “heroism” is countering.

        • Jerry

          White Supremacy is why the case was brought to court, but not behind the ruling.

        • No, white supremacy is behind it getting to the Court of Appeals.

          • Mike

            Or, people just not wanting the name of a place changed for reasons that they consider intellectually specious.

          • Jerry

            Is there a logical reason for opposing the name change?

          • Racists, basically.

          • Mike

            Yeah, because if there’s anything that lends itself to simplistic moral arguments, it’s human history.

            This is all about the need for white liberals to feel good about themselves, while doing absolutely nothing to improve the lives of racial minorities.

          • “simplistic moral arguments”

            OK, I’m listening. Take all the time you need to make your complicated case for embracing John C. Calhoun.

          • Mike

            It’s not my job to convince you, but you don’t seem to grasp the basic difference in philosophy and approach. Calling everyone a racist who disagrees that this is a priority or worthy of concern is bigoted in itself.

            Every human being is product of his/her time and place, including every historical figure – even those whom everyone agrees was great. Abraham Lincoln stated that he would have kept the Union together without freeing a single slave if he could have. He was not a pure crusader for freedom the way he’s often portrayed.

            If circumstances had been different, Lincoln would likely not be the great hero we see him as today because slavery would have persisted beyond his presidency. He wasn’t a 21st century person, despite the efforts of many people to pretend he was.

            There was nothing remarkable about Calhoun’s views on non-white people in the early/mid 19th century. It was a mainstream view that all non-white people were inferior. This was true in the north and the south. He was not a singularly evil genius like Hitler or Stalin. He merely was a typical representative of the evils of his era. Certain factions here seem to want to deny that they are part of country where slavery was practiced for 250 years, and obsessing about Calhoun I suppose serves that purpose.

            The point being: if we’re going to run around renaming everything because of the sins of the past, then pretty soon we’ll have to rename everything, because the past was by nature not the same as the present. And many of today’s mainstream views will likely be condemned by people of the future. Things change.

            It’s fair to say that on occasion we should rethink which people we admire and honor as a society, but I don’t even think Calhoun falls into that category. Few people today have any idea who he was. That a lake in Minnesota is named after him is a historical accident, but that in itself is typical of how history works.

            In their zeal to erase the name of someone who was forgotten anyway, the proponents of this initiative proceeded in ignorance of the law, and have now created something of a mess with respect to the lake’s name. Wouldn’t those efforts have been better spent trying to accomplish something worthwhile?

          • Well, you had your chance.

            Let’s summarize the basic foundation of the defenders of Calhoun as it currently stands, then:

            “I’m not a racist.”
            – Every racist ever.

          • Mike

            Like I said, it’s not my job, and you’ve made up your mind anyway. You have a right to your opinion, as others do to theirs. But it would be nice if you could stop the name-calling of people who disagree on this.

          • The embrace of racism isn’t really a different opinion that has a right to protection from being called what it is.

            The foundation of the embrace of John C. Calhoun comes from a deep, if unacknowledged or, perhaps, unrecognized, racism that is usually masked in a cowardly way by specious and disingenous declarations of “where does it stop” etc.

            It is what it is, however.

          • Mike

            How is what I’ve said “embracing racism”? Take all the time you need to explain why a different perspective on the past is racist.

          • Because we’re in the present now, Mike. And things that might’ve been normal as a result of ignorance and bigotry aren’t normal anymore and inflict a pain.

            You can claim an ignorance in history. But you can’t claim an ignorance in the present.

            The question isn’t so much what history once embraced. The question is what the present chooses to embrace.

          • Mike

            Well, you had your chance. You proceed from a charmingly childish notion that by renaming something that no one even remembers the source of, we’ll strike some great blow for social equity. I call BS. This is a substitute for confronting injustice in the here and now.

            But as long as we’re renaming things, I have a candidate: the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building in DC. Now there’s a figure from recent history who caused a great deal of damage. Where is the groundswell for putting the stake in the heart of Hoover?

          • But as long as we’re renaming things, I have a candidate: the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building in DC. Now there’s a figure from recent history who caused a great deal of damage. Where is the groundswell for putting the stake in the heart of Hoover?

            They are way ahead of you buddy (the first link is from 1997).




          • Mike

            Thanks for the links. But it certainly hasn’t changed yet. That says way more about our federal government than a lake in Minnesota says about people here.

          • You asked about support for changing the name so I obliged.

            As an aside, the Feds are in the process of building a completely new FBI HQ so the need for renaming the old building complex is a moot point.

            The new building will certainly not be named after Hoover.

          • Mike

            And I appreciate the info. But the lack of success here makes the point that Bob is too busy calling names to understand. It’s easy to point out the flaws of the distant past for purposes of public grandstanding – the historical equivalent of shooting fish in a barrel.

            But the closer we get to the present, even reprehensible people like Hoover have their defenders. His evil is far more relevant to the present than Calhoun’s. Nor does his name blight something benign like a lake, but rather a major institution of our government. Calhoun has few defenders in our era, but I’m not so sure about Hoover.

          • The fact you do not see a continuing embrace of Calhoun as even relevant today undercuts your own stated argument about why Lake Calhoun should exist.

            In a tweet today, Bill Lindeke pretty much nailed it. The defenders of Lake Calhoun are pretty much straight out of the 1870s.

            The people of the 1870s, however, had the benefit of ignorance . The people of 2019, even as they demand protection from criticism, do not have that security blanket.

          • Mike

            Who actually embraces Calhoun, the historical figure? This must be a vanishingly small group of people. What most people embrace are their own associations and memories of a lake called “Calhoun”. That you apparently don’t grasp that is startling.

          • I grasp it but I categorize it in the same field — bull**** — as Mary Kiffmeyer claiming she’s honoring the military and veterans by insisting they not be besmirched by including a relevant fact of history that happens to involve non-whites.

            She’s lying. That’s not what’s behind her slashing the MNHS budget over it.

            What’s it behind it is the same thing that’s behind the Lake Calhoun crowd.

            That’s why Tom Austin’s comment on Dakota Indians was so important. He dropped his act just long enough to reveal his true character as a racist.

          • Mike

            For the record, I agree with you that Kiffmeyer is full of bull. The way I understand it was done at Fort Snelling (addition, rather than substitution or subtraction) is more historically accurate.

          • Danielle S

            Why is the uninformed nostalgia of some people worth more than the historically ignored pain and mistreatment of others? Your notion that no one remembers the context of John Calhoun is limited by your particular worldview.
            I also take issue with your idea that this issue is a waste of time. For one thing, it was the Save Calhoun group that has made it an ongoing issue. Second, you imply that those who care about retaining the Bde Maka Ska name are doing nothing else to work for equity and justice and the dismantling of white supremacy, which is just obtuse.

          • Andy K.

            No, I think that Bob gets it plainly. The question is: “Who gets to decide what memories are more important? The people who have had emotional experiences that make them fond of the name ‘Lake Calhoun’, or the people who have had emotional experiences that have made them not fond of the name ‘Lake Calhoun'”. It’s an issue of power, and who gets to wield it.

          • RBHolb

            Although Calhoun did not live to see Treason in Defense of Slavery, he was certainly one of the prime inspirations behind it, what with his racist theorizing and his defense for nullification.

            If you think America is not still impacted by the Civil War, all I can say is that I am a member of the Nigerian royal family, and I need your assistance in getting money out of my country for humanitarian purposes.

          • // This is a substitute for confronting injustice in the here and now.

            You mean like Black Lives Matters? See the racist underpinnings of debates like this always involves dismissing the legitimacy of the isolated sample while intentionally ignoring the larger context of reality. And for good reason, of course. Doing so invalidates the entire smokescreen argument and lays bare that racist underpinning, just as Tom Austin did when he said, “What good have the Dakota Indians ever done.”

            That’s the point at which the reality of the argument leaked through the smokescreen.

          • Mike

            No, you’re deliberately distorting the position to suit your own needs to claim moral superiority. I am not Tom Austin. My argument essentially is that there’s more danger in burying history than it keeping it exposed, including all the horrible parts.

            The Germans have preserved the stadium at Nuremberg – the site of the infamous Nazi rallies of the 1930s – because they want people to remember. By your logic, how does this not cause harm to Jews and other groups who were persecuted by the Nazis? Shouldn’t it be demolished?

            My approach is more consistent with the German one than yours. You can disagree that this is correct, of course, but please be honest.

          • Jerry

            Just because something is the least you can do is not a reason to not do it.

      • LifebloodMN

        “But it wasn’t enough to counter the white supremacy” Oh dear.

      • Quite a few people are ignorant of history, especially that involving first peoples. I never really began to understand it until I read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee maybe around 1973. This in spite of the fact that I grew up in Mankato, site of the nation’s largest mass execution. It looks like the MN GOP is picking nits with this historical naming because it plays into the white victimhood and political correctness narratives that are playing as Trump’s “best hits” nationwide. What it really says to me is that their party is bereft of players capable of serious governance.

        • Frank

          Well that, and it’s a lot easier to grand stand than do something to help your rural constituents.

    • John Maddening

      Well, the former Calhoun Cycle changed its name to Perennial Cycle even before the lake’s name change went through, so it’s not too difficult.

  • Rob

    Nice one, hacker! Oops – I meant to say “Bad, bad hacker!” : )

  • Ruth Virkus

    I love that the hackers had the cultural sensitivity to use the language of their opponents: mansplaining.

  • Matt Pennig

    The site wasn’t hacked. The domain name expired, the original owner failed to renew it. An enterprising advocate noticed this, and snapped it up.


      That’s even better… and something that happened to us 15 years ago.

    • Gary Leatherman

      you’d think a rich venture capitalist could have afforded to select the auto-renew on their $25 domain name purchase.

      • RBHolb

        It makes it look like he wasn’t especially serious about the whole thing, but was doing it as an attention-seeking lark.

        • Except that he was among the most secretive of people. Yes, he appeared at a parks board meeting, but everything else was behind a cloak of anonymity. He’s also never responded to requests for interviews.

          • jon

            Perhaps a more fitting term would be Trolling.

          • RBHolb

            That’s interesting. I had put him down as one of those smirking *****s who say they’re just being a “gadfly.”

      • pixelsnbits

        Actually it only cost me $9.06.

        • Depends on your host / registrar. I’ve registered domains for $1 before.

          • pixelsnbits

            Well, I’m telling you, I bought for $9.06.

          • Laurie K.

            Well played pixelsnbits, well played.

          • You. Are. Awesome.

            /I grabbed for $1. I just need to figure out content.

    • Domain name “hijack”?

      Well played!!!

      Bonus: It looks like this person just grabbed it yesterday.

  • AL287

    All 300 people “surveyed” likely live in the Calhoun Beach Apartments or similar establishments nearby.

    The whole “not in my backyard” attitude is why the state and the country will remain divided until we put into practice tolerance and acceptance of people who do not look like you, talk like you or dress like you.

    Whether we want to admit it or not, we are still dealing with the aftermath of the Civil War and for that matter the U.S. Dakota War.

    My grandmother made her black maid use designated plates, silverware and glasses when she ate her lunch until my oldest sister told her gently that it was no longer nice or acceptable to do so.

    It is difficult to “let go” of prejudices that have been drilled into us when we were children which is why it is so important to teach children tolerance and acceptance from a young age.

    Take the plank out of your own eye before you try to remove the splinter from your brother’s.

  • LifebloodMN

    Even the Dakota didn’t agree on one single Lake name: Mde Maka Ska, Mde Med’oza, Heyate Mde. I am personally partial to Mde Med’oza, which translates to loon lake.

  • Mike Worcester

    Classic 🙂

  • ChrisX

    Absolutely ridiculous racist my foot! That name has been around for centuries! And now the libs have to waste tax payers money to change the name! So wasteful and so stupid!

    • Centuries? There’s a historical falsehood right there.

  • Ryan Johnson

    I’m still partial to “The Lake Formerly Known as Calhoun”…

    • scoronam

      I’m from Texas so my opinion doesn’t really count here, but for what it’s worth I think that’s the most distinctly Minneapolean approach. + 1 “The Lake Formerly Known as Calhoun”