Again, the solution when cops are aggressive is not to stop using cops. It's to make a better police force that understands who they protect. Getting them on their feet or on bikes on Nicollet Mall (and elsewhere) is one way to do that. Behaviors that might appear very aggressive from behind a windshield can look very different when you're out on the street and can hear what's going on.
I can't say I've personally ever been heckled (I have had to deal with very aggressive panhandlers at times, though) and I like to walk with confidence but disinterest...I rarely am bothered. But to write off others concerns about feeling uncomfortable about being called a gay slur or the aggressive panhandling or the drug dealing that happens on the Mall is to ignore why our transit mall is currently a fraction of its potential.
I also don't get how "more diversity" will fix this. Do you mean exposure to more cultures? Even if we weren't going to be a majority white city and metro for the foreseeable future, who among us--black or white, rich or poor, man or woman, straight or LGBT--wants to be exposed to generally distasteful behavior. When we pretend that this is only us not understanding other cultures, we're kind of slapping the face of the majority of folks who don't look like us who also believe in a minimum standard of acceptable behavior.
More diversity equals more residents that have places to go and increases the perception of safety. As this is ONLY a perception of safety issues, considering we are talking about inner city youths yelling, being disrespectful, and being insulting. When you write about writing off others concerns about feeling uncomfortable about being called a gay slur or aggressive panhandling. Don't you gotta take a moment and think about what you just said? The insults people write online make what people say on the streets lame and bland at best. Honestly if your being insulted on Nicollet Mall by some inner city youth why can't you get over it? Of the people that insulted me on the street they tend to be very disgusting people, quite literary! Most smelled or there hair looked unwashed and most of the time they didn't even have a clean shirt. Run your mouth back at them if you feel offended. Usually they have some mental problems that make them such aggressive people, so I rarely respond. I'm sorry if you feel stressed or unsafe at times along Nicollet Mall, but being loud and rude is not or should not be a situation where police are needed to "keep the peace"
As to the Mall not living up to it's potential it's coming back greatly for the better with all the new retail. Downtown won't ever be THE shopping destination of the twin cities considering MOA exists. Yet it can and is fastly becoming a nice place to shop again.