Madison organizations showed solidarity with Amazon workers organizing in Alabama

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. 

The Bus Stops Here: Voter ID requirement hurts transit-dependent voters

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.

The Bus Stops Here: Madison Needs to Improve Public Transit Without Displacement, Part I

Transit advocates in Madison and elsewhere are quick to point out that traveling with one less car can save a household on average over $9,000 a year (based on national 2019 figures for traveling 15,000 miles), whether that household goes from having two to one car, one to no car or just not getting a car in the first place. Transit advocates also tout the socially inclusive nature of a public system that serves people of all ages, incomes, ethnicities, and physical abilities. And they argue that even riding diesel, rather than electric, buses can substantially cut down on one's carbon footprint while enabling road diets and the reclamation of public space disproportionately allocated to car parking. After all, the city's 2018 Comprehensive Plan's No. 1 transportation strategy (p.

State Street murals draw mixed reactions

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.

What it’s like to be tested for coronavirus

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.

African American Council of Churches leads thousands in Black Lives Matter Solidarity march

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.

The Bus Stops Here: For Essential Travel

As of May 17, there are 12,571 positive cases and 453 deaths from COVID-19 in Wisconsin, and 537 and 25 respectively in Dane County. The numbers will be higher tomorrow. Madison Metro's administrative offices are closed to the public but its buses continue to operate.  Buses provide an essential service. Essential travel includes going to work, medical appointments and grocery stores. Passengers enter and exit the bus through the back door, if they’re able.

Chapman concerned for family, community and country during COVID-19 crisis

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.”

Racism a concern for Chinese students amid COVID-19 pandemic

Tao Zhou is one of thousands among the UW-Madison Class of 2020 whose college years were cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic. For many seniors, the abrupt ending to college has been anything but easy. But for students like Zhou, it has sparked a whole new outlook on life. 

“I started to feel the gaze when I was walking on the street, probably around February, when the U.S. started to first see cases of the coronavirus.” 

Zhou, an international student from Beijing, China, has been studying economics and photography at the University of Wisconsin - Madison for the past four years. Following the first break of news around COVID-19 in February, Zhou started noticing a major increase in acts of racism around her. After spotting graffiti on UW- Madison campus reading, “It’s from China, #chinesevirus” Zhou shared a picture of the chalked words on her Instagram page.

Finding political identity: How the pandemic changed one UW-Madison student’s primary vote

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.