Friday, June 24, 2011

Issue #3- June 24, 2011

What This Is…
Issue #3- June 24, 2011
Upcoming Events and other thoughts.

Why We Fight…
"Don't do what you can't undo until you've considered what you can't do once you've done it." This is a quote from one of my favorite fantasy authors, Robin Hobb, in her Farseer Trilogy.  It seems to me that the current administration and legislative majority is so intent on pushing their agenda ahead that they haven't given most citizens a chance to think about the consequences of the actions that are being taken.  Several Democratic Senators spoke eloquently about the fact that, while the current legislation can be changed and repealed, the fact remains that there is no way to ever undo the damage that will be caused for citizens impacted now.  Students will lose educational opportunities, people's health will suffer, small businesses will be eliminated and the environment will be impacted in ways that will affect future generations.

What does that mean for those of us who are fighting to stop, or at least slow down this massive effort to change Wisconsin?  Many of us have heard someone say (or even said this ourselves), "What good will it do to ___, it's just going to happen anyway?"  We can't ever forget that without the actions of mid-February all of our outrage over the budget, budget repair bill, voter id, etc. wouldn't be relevant.  Even though we have "lost" and these have all been passed, attention has been drawn to them and we have the hope of recalls and future actions.  I spent part of last Thursday watching the Senate "debate" on the budget with several kids ages 11-15.  They were interested, informed and offered insightful opinions while watching.  That is inspiration in itself, I know that at the age of 15 I never would have been as engaged in politics as they were/are.

Another side-effect of all this has been an awakening of skills, passions and interests in all of us.  I readily admit that until this February I was a pretty uninspired union member.  True, I did have the faded memories of walking the picket lines in 1976 with my dad, but my own personal contributions to the cause were pretty much just my dues.  I also was a pretty quiet person who was rarely heard from during meetings.  Fast forward to today and I certainly feel the need to speak out and represent my views to others.  I find myself standing on the street with signs, canvassing for candidates and connecting with colleagues around the district.  I'm sure that we all can think of examples of this growth in ourselves and in others we know. 

With all of these positive things coming out of such a negative situation it becomes easier to have hope for the future.  However, we can't just hold on to future hopes, we must also seize the present opportunities to stand up for our rights and the rights of others.  If we don't do this now, it will be more difficult in the future and many will have suffered under the current regime.  That being said, I'm encouraging as many of you as possible to use your skills and strengths to fight the efforts of Walker and the majority party legislators.  Each of us has many things to offer to the fight and all our contributions together are our greatest asset.  Look at the following opportunities and see what you can participate in.

How We Fight…
Sunday, June 26 – MTI group canvassing in Baraboo. We need you!
                        10:30 AM to no later than 6:00PM

Thursdays- MTI night to phone bank at the Labor Temple.  There are opportunities for                             data entry as well.  Volunteers are needed any day of the week.

Write/Call Legislators-Governor- Communicating with our elected representatives is
                        important (whether they want to hear from us or not).

Use "A Union Member Just Supported Your Business" cards when shopping-
                        One way to show our purchasing power and just what businesses will
                        lose as we share the sacrifice with the private sector.

Board Meeting Monday @6-  The School Board takes on next year's budget.  Feel free to
                        drop in wearing your MTI shirt.  The Board and administration are noticing.

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