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On Thursday, November 8, Tony Castaneda talks with Daniel Callahan and Brian Gee, homeless residents of Occupy Madison, as well as Brenda Konkel, of the Madison Tenant Resource Center. The 15 tent homeless encampment on the 800 block of East Washington Ave has been served a 48 hour eviction notice by the city of Madison. They will need to leave the premises by Friday Nov 9 at 3pm. Daniel, who has been with the Occupy movement for over a year and homeless in Madison “on and off” since 1979, says that the mayor, who had said that he would hold off on an eviction until they were able to obtain housing, has gone back on his promise. He also says that the mayor has not yet visited them since the eviction. Brian Gee explains that despite many of the occupants being skilled laborers, they still found themselves homeless, due to lack of employment, Brian himself has been a carpenter for 15 years, and has done electrical, plumbing, and stick build construction. He lost his job one and half years ago. Before arriving in Madison in hopes of obtaining work, Brian lived in Stevens Point, where he was homeless for one month. He explains that upon arriving in Madison, he went to Porchlight for assistance in finding a job; he says, “the first thing I ended up hitting was Porchlight…and they literally didn’t help me at all. I had to do everything on my own.” When discussing the difference in treatment of the homeless among different locations, Brenda Konkel mentions Appleton as having a strong homeless program. “There’s not much of a homeless population… [Because] they’re only homeless for 30 days, they’re able to get people into housing really quick.” She also describes Minnesota as having one of the best programs in the US: their ‘housing first’ program ensures that housing is placed as the priority, “if you don’t have a home base to work from, it’s really hard to do the rest.” They believe that Madison has more resources than the city is actually willing to put in towards the homeless. Brenda says, “If we have $50,000 for a music video [in the budget], we can put that towards running a comprehensive day center…so at least they could have a place during the day to be able to use the computer, shower, store their stuff…” With the present situation, one must move to several different centers to ….read article »
On Thursday November 8, host Tony Castaneda speaks with UW Lacrosse Professor Al Gedicks about the resurgence in the mining rush, and the attempts to get rid of anti-mining environmental laws. Al Gedicks is also an organizer with the Midwest Coalition Against Lethal Mining (MCALM). The reintroduction of the mining bill is a top priority on the agenda for the upcoming session. Al comments, “It is a fundamental assault on the environmental protections and the public participation provisions that have been won by environmental battles that have gone back to the 1970s. This is a bill that was written by [mining company] Gogebic Taconite in cooperation with Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce Association to pave the way for a gigantic open pit iron mine in the Penokee hills in the bad river water shed next to Lake Superior and next to the sacred rice wells of the Ojibwe tribe….” Al explains that the passing of this bill would “set a dangerous precedent for future mining proposals of which there are many…that could affect the environment, health, and economies of these northern communities.” There is a resistance movement against the bill, Al reports, “a broad coalition of interests has mobilized to defeat that bill, AB 426 the iron mining bill, and will reconvene when the legislation does to work against the passing of that bill.” There will be a discussion of the issue “Connecting Common Struggles: Destructive Mining in El Salvador and Wisconsin” this Sunday at Edgewood College. Community representatives from El Salvador and Wisconsin will come together to discuss the problems that their communities are facing with the mining threat and legislation. 6:30 – 8:00 PM Sunday November 11 Edgewood College, Washburn Heritage Room, Regina Hall Listen to the entire interview here:read article »
A visual tribute project commemorating the lives of men and women who died crossing the US border from Mexico is discussed on the Thursday November 8 edition of the 8 O’Clock Buzz. Host Tony Castaneda interviews Ariana, a student at Edgewood College, who created the project. Her project, “Dying to Cross,” is a visual tribute commemorating the 177 men and women who died in the deserts while crossing the southern border, in pursuit of their American Dream. The project is displayed in the library courtyard of the Edgewood campus. Says Ariana, “I’ve come from a family of immigrants, so I’ve seen both sides of it; how it affects people here in the US and how it affects people in Mexico. So I just wanted the people of Edgewood to be able to think about it a little.” The project features 177 crosses across the campus and the library courtyard. Each cross contains the name, gender, age, and cause of death of the individual: most of the causes of death say “unknown.” Ariana explains that it is typically volunteers who discover the bodies in the desert. The project is open to the public. A remembrance ceremony will be held today, November 8, at 6:30 PM in front of the main building on campus. There will also be a film showing at 7 PM with a discussion to follow afterwards. “De Nadie” is presented in conjunction with the Immigration film series that is currently being held on campus at the Anderson auditorium. Contact Edgewood’s Center for Diversity and Inclusion for more information. Listen to the entire interview here:read article »
On Wednesday November 7, host Jan Miyasaki interviewed Professor Alfred McCoy, Professor of History at UW-Madison. He is the author of ”Torture and Impunity: The US Doctrine…read article »
On Wednesday November 7, host Jan Miyasaki spoke with Mary Layoun, Chair and Professor of Comparative Literature at UW-Madison. She spoke about the toxicity of political life and the campaign. Mary explains,“The toxicity is worse than I have ever seen it. And the money involved…is just stunning. That piece is so deeply broken, and I would hope that we can come up with ways to address that toxicity. I don’t think we can wait for anybody to fix it…” Layoun believes that it is important to reclaim democracy at the grassroots level. She comments on the ‘big picture issues’, including campaign finance reform and the use of stealth surveillance systems. She believes that the American public must become more aware of the U.S. Foreign policy and the events occuring in the world. Jan asks Layoun to comment on the distinctiveness between the two crowds present for Romney and Obama last night,“one of the things leaders can do is open a space rhetorically where the rest of us can come in and in fact be integrated… that’s something a leader can enable in multiple ways, party by deliberate inclusion and paying attention to who small groups are supported.” When Jan asks Mary which question she would present to the President, she explains that she would ask, “How are you going to empower ordinary americans in the next four years to be engaged, to address the multiple problems of this society, rhetorically, materially, and politically, to work together?” Listen to the interview here:read article »
On Wednesday Nov 7, our host Jan Miyasaki interviewed Selena Petigrew, President of the Allied Dunn’s Marsh Neighborhood Association, and founding member and board member of member run and owned cooperative, Allied Wellness Coop. They speak about the voter turnout in the Allied Dunn’s Marsh neighborhood, where there was, roughly, a 70% turnout. Selena explains that the lines were steady throughout the day, and that voter turnout has increased in her neighborhood ever since the recall election. She explains that the issue most at stake this election was their livelihood. When asked what question Selena would present to the President, if given an opportunity, she said she would ask, “why is there such a difference between communities? My community should be able to get just as much as your community gets… He needs to know that we are all the same.” She speaks about the voter registration drive efforts that began during the recall movement, and she stresses the importance of having the people within a community step up to take leadership positions, so as to activate others within the community. “Please, support your associations,” Selena says. Contact Selena at firstname.lastname@example.org Listen to the interview here:read article »
On Wednesday November 7, our host Jan Miyasaki spoke with WORT News and Public Affairs Facilitator Molly Stentz about the November 6 elections. WORT had a four hour coverage of the elections on Nov 6 night. Molly reports on some of the highlights from last night, including the local elections. She talks about Tammy Baldwin, “…We have not only our first gay Senator, but also our first female Senator, from Wisconsin. So Tammy Baldwin continues to break records and break through glass ceilings here in Wisconsin, and continues to represent that streak in Wisconsin politics of independent thinkers. People that buck the status quo…” Molly also reports on the other highlights; the State Senate did return to the control of the Republicans, picking up two seats – the seat held by Jessica King for the 18th Senate District as well as the seat formerly held by Jim Holperin. Explains Molly, “That gives the Republicans a comfortable majority in the State Senate, adding to their hefty control of the State Assembly. It means that in addition to the Governor’s Office, all three bodies are controlled by Republicans, meaning its going to be an interesting year for politics in the State Legislature next year. They’re in a stronger position now than even in 2011. What happened last night is that the two seats that the Democrats picked up in the recall were effectively just switched back.” Robin Vos was predicted to have leadership in the Assembly. Paul Ryan, who also ran for re-election for US House District 1, will return to congress. Also victorious was Mark Pocan, who is now the congressman for US House District 2. He spoke with Norm Stockwell from the Monona Terrace, “This district has a long reputation of a strong fighting progressive spirits. Im up for that, and i’m going to make sure that I do my best to represent our district in congress and be ready on day one.” Jan asks about the voter turnout from yesterday. Says Molly, “It was high.. it was a record. The state elections board was projecting three million voters statewide.” Also present were international election observers present in Madison to monitor the elections. They will be holding a press conference later today. Listen to the entire interview here:read article »
In this special Election Day edition, Milele Chikasa Anana, of Umoja Magazine spoke with our host Aaron Perry on Tuesday, November 6. Milele joins the program to stress the importance of voting. She explains the importance of just one vote, “in 2004, the Mayor’s race in Milwaukee was decided by one single vote…so you’re single individual vote does count. In 1960…the margin of victory that Kennedy had over Nixon was less than 1 voter per precinct…that was a contest that has some similarities and possibilities for this contest. I hope there are people out there who believe that one vote matters.” She stresses the 15th Amendment, which provides each citizen the right to vote, “people can not be denied the right to vote based on race, color, or previous condition.” Aaron asks Milele to describe some of the changes she has seen, over her lifetime. “I think the election of President Obama is definitely a historical event that will go down in the history books. I think he brought in a fresh perspective, and of course he is the first African American [President]. It is only a few years ago that African Americans were fighting to vote. They had to fight voter intimidation, they had to pass a literacy test, they had to pass the grandfather clause, and they had to pay money to vote. And the NAACP and the ACLU and many organizations were fighting that kind of thing…so to have a person elected president, who just, in the past fifty or sixty years, his folks could not even vote, that is a miracle.” “If you don’t vote, your opinion does not matter,” Milele explains. Read more about Milele here. Listen to the entire conversation here:read article »
In this special Election Day edition, our host Aaron Perry interviewed Stacy Harbaugh, Communications Director of the Wisconsin chapter of the ACLU on Tuesday November 6. She is here to speak about voting rights and election issues. The Hotline, 866-Our-Vote, is available all day today for those who have questions regarding voting or wish to report any problems with the polls. Non-partisan attorneys who are specialists in Wisconsin laws will be on the hotline to answer the questions. While Election Day registration is still possible, there have been other changes made to Wisconsin voting laws, Stacy explains. The corroboration ban will no longer allow for another to vouch for one’s residency should they lack the acceptable documents. Also, the length of time required to establish residency has been extended from 10 days to 28 days. “But fortunately photo ID is not required for registered voters, that’s another big deal,” Stacy says. Stacy explains that the coalition advocates for people’s voting rights, and provides one such example, “today, if you don’t have a printed version of your bank statement to prove your residency, you can take your smart phone into the polls, and you can sit down and work with poll workers and show them your bank statement online…and that was something we pushed for, and fortunately the government accountability board, which administers our elections, saw the wisdom in that, and they made that a rule and now you can do that in Wisconsin.” Aaron asks Stacy to describe trends that are being seen. Rules and restrictions surrounding poll watchers, Stay explains, is one situation that will be closely watched today. She also explains that convicted felons can not vote until they are “off paper.” Stacy said to expect lines today at the voting stations, but to remain patient. She stresses that even though the polls close at 8 PM, people can still vote as long as they were in line before that, “Even if its 8 o’clock, if you are in line, you can still vote. Every polling place has workers that have been instructed to send someone to be the marker to see who is at the end of the line. Stay in line, stick with it.” Hotline: 866-Our-Vote (866-687-8683) Facebook: Wisconsin Election Protection. Twitter: @EPWisco For more information about voting rights materials, visit ACLU Wisconsin Listen to the entire interview here:read article »
On Friday November 2, in this special Wisconsin Book Festival edition, our host Jonathan Zarov speaks with directors of the festival Megan Katz and Allison Jones Chaim, as well as Cherene Sherrard-Johnson, Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The festival, themed “Lost and Found,” runs from Nov 7 – 11, with many of the events taking place at the Overture Center and several other locations in Madison, Wisconsin. Jonathan asks Allison and Megan how much of the work at the festival is ‘local’; Allison explains “upwards of a third, maybe even as many as a half have some kind of Wisconsin connection. It’s not necessarily that the work is about the local, but there are these Wisconsin connections that make people want to come back.” One such author is Cherene Sherrard-Johnson. Cherene, author of Dorothy West’s Paradise: A Biography of Class and Color, will be presenting at the festival on a panel – Recovering Black Women from the Harlem Renaissance and Beyond along with Tracy Curtis and Ethelene Whitmire. The book deals with Harlem Renaissance author Dorothy West, whose work was ‘lost’, “[Dorothy] was one of the younger writers to come to Harlem during the Renaissance, but she was the longest lived writer [of the Renaissance]…she didn’t die until 1998, so she really outlived almost all of them. She wrote for much of her life, but because her first novel didn’t come until 1948, and then she didn’t write for almost fifty years another novel, many people forgot about her.” When asked if the Harlem Renaissance writers, in general, made a living from their works, Cherene explains, “No, even the ones you know of, like Zora Neale Hurston famously died on an unmarked grave until Alice Walker discovered her, so this theme of recovery or discovery is one that often is happening again and again. Most of the [Harlem Renaissance] writers, with the exception of Langston Hughes…stopped writing, disappeared, died…” Jonathan asks Cherene to compare the Harlem Renaissance with the literary scene today in the United States, “The Harlem Renaissance really was an integrated movement, an interracial movement, because you did have this coalition of black artists and white publishers and patrons who were, in many ways, funding the art. That’s part of why there was such an artistic explosion. You also had black ….read article »