Local organizations Socialist Alternative and Our Wisconsin Revolution gathered Sunday, April 12 outside the Amazon Locker location on Johnson Street in Madison to show solidarity with the Amazon warehouse workers voting to unionize in Alabama. Social activists supported the working community fighting for their employee’s rights in one of the largest companies in the country.
Next week, perhaps for the last time, the City of Madison will elect 20 City Council members for a 2- year period. Among their duties, Council members pass annual budgets that set taxes and determine how those taxes get spent. Those budgetary decisions in turn impact everything, from housing and police, to parks and yes, transportation.
Various politically-minded groups gear up for this event, help with political campaigns and/or endorse particular candidates. Their activity is based on the probably incorrect premise that potential or actual transit riders are as able to vote as others. It should be correct, and the Dane County Voter ID Coalition has assigned itself the task of identifying voters who may not have an acceptable voter photo ID, then arranging for them to receive assistance in obtaining one.
After the Madison Black Lives Matter protests, I made a point to see the murals along State Street. For me, this artwork raised new questions to consider, community issues to understand, and social concerns to contemplate.
With the continually rising cases of coronavirus infection in the greater Madison area, testing for the pandemic responsible for nearly 140,000 deaths in the US has become a regular occurrence for many. At least for me. Nasal swabs which determine the presence of the virus are currently being done by the National Guard at the Alliant Energy Center and promised until at least August 31.
On day number seven of protests in Madison, thousands turned out in representation of the faith community.
The Black Lives Matter Solidarity march organized by the African American Church Council started at the Bethel Lutheran Church Sunday evening at the intersection of University Avenue and Park Street and ended at the state Capitol. Every nine minutes the group, which stretched for blocks, stopped in recognition of the 8 minutes and 46 seconds in which a white police officer knelt on the neck of George Floyd. Mackenzie Krumme was there.
Kathleen Chapman admitted she is bored under the current stay-at-home order, but she also recognizes the struggles faced by millions of others around the country — especially people of color and those in single- income households.
“I live in a position of enormous amounts of privilege. My husband’s job is secure. My job is secure. Heck, even my daughter’s job is secure,” Chapman said. “We are not in a position to worry about whether or not we’re going to make our mortgage payments or any of that. My concern is for the people who are going to be more disproportionately affected, and that’s going to be people who have always been more vulnerable in our society.”
Dylan Witte can count on one hand the number of times they’ve brought up politics to their parents. In fact, it was only once, in fourth grade, when they were learning about then-presidential candidate Barack Obama.
Their father’s response was, “Excuse me, what?”
Witte — a nonbinary, queer-identifying UW-Madison junior (who uses they/them pronouns) — thought that was a normal reply. That is until they came to study in the state’s politically diverse capital.