Shawano County Dems – June, 2021 Newsletter

UNITED STATES SENATE CANDIDATES

Now there are six candidates vying for the chance to defeat Ron Johnson in the November, 2022 election. In addition to Tom Nelson, Alex Lowry, Sarah Godlewski and Gillian Battino, the following candidates have announced their candidacy.

State Senator Chris Larson wants to unrig the system in addition to stopping the fascism that has been taking over America.  He believes in affordable child care, paid family leave and access to healthcare for all.  He will Zoom with us at our July 21st meeting.  https://voteforlarson.org/

Steve Olikara is the founder and former CEO of the Millennial Action Project which trains young elected officials to build diverse coalitions for real change.  He wants to lead with the values of dignity, inclusion and compassion.  You can find out more at https://www.stevenolikara.com/.

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AMERICANS BEHIND IN FIXING INFRASTRUCTURE

Below is a Letter to the Editor published in the Shawano Leader.

AMERICANS BEHIND IN FIXING INFRASTRUCTURE

After decades of disinvestment, our roads, bridges, and water systems are crumbling. Our electric grid is vulnerable to catastrophic outages. Too many lack affordable, high-speed Internet and quality housing. It’s embarrassing that the greatest nation in the world is ranked 13th in the overall quality of infrastructure according to a study in 2019.

Government officials from both parties have been promising for years how they will move forward with an infrastructure plan.  Former President Trump announced two different infrastructure weeks that never happened.  Governor Evers promised if elected he would fix “the damn roads”.  Finally, we have a president and a governor who are working on infrastructure at the same time.

Evers’ Badger Bounceback agenda shows his commitment to fixing the 1,949 miles of crumbling roads as well as the 198 bridges which are in poor condition in Wisconsin. His 2021-23 budget brings the state’s investment in transportation aid for local roads to its highest level ever.

Infrastructure telecommunications include internet connectivity and broadband access.  Every Wisconsinite should be able to access and afford internet.  Evers’ would like to invest five times the amount invested in the 2013, 2015, and 2017 budgets combined making internet services affordable to all income levels.

President Biden is also committed to improving our infrastructure.   Biden’s American Jobs Plan is an investment in America that will create millions of good jobs and rebuild our country’s infrastructure.

The American Jobs Plan will invest in America in a way we have not invested since we built the interstate highways and won the Space Race in the late 1960’s.  The past year has led to job losses and threatened economic security.  Our nation is falling behind its biggest competitors on research and development (R&D), manufacturing, and training. It has never been more important for us to invest in strengthening our infrastructure and competitiveness, and in creating good-paying jobs of the future.

In a Monmouth University Poll survey sixty-eight percent of U.S. adults supported the president’s infrastructure package dealing with physical needs including road, bridge and tunnel upkeep, as well as broadband internet expansion and electric vehicle investments.

Hopefully our elected officials can support the people, compromise, and come up with infrastructure plans that improve life for all Americans.

Shawano County Dems – May, 2021 Newsletter

UNITED STATES SENATE CANDIDATES
So far there are four candidates vying for the chance to defeat Ron Johnson in the November, 2022 election.

Sarah Godlewski will be speaking at our May 19th meeting.  She is a small business woman and our State Treasurer.  She is running to fix Ron Johnson’s mess and get Washington laser-focused on the kitchen table issues facing Wisconsin families.   www.sarahforwisconsin.com.

Tom Nelson has been the Outagamie County Executive since 2011. He previously spent six years in the Wisconsin Assembly. He believes we need real leaders in Washington who will take COVID seriously.  www.nelsonforwi.com

Alex Lasry is a businessman and co-owner of the Milwaukee Bucks.  He served in the Obama White House.  Alex is running to bring a new way of thinking to Washington and deliver real results for Wisconsinites.  www.alexlasry.com

Gillian Battino is a radiologist from Wausau.  She spent more than 20 years in medicine and public service.  She wants to use her empathy to build a brighter future for all of Wisconsin.  www.battinoforsenate.us
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Shawano Dems News Update

March Meeting Reminder

Wed., March 17th
7:00 pm

Zoom link below

Jay Heck, Executive Director of Common Cause

Jay will speak about the voter suppression measures being introduced in the Wisconsin Legislature and about the fair maps redistricting process.

Contact us for Log In information.

TEXT

For Our Future is a grassroots group calling voters across the state, reminding them about the election on April 6th.

Throughout the month, they are spending every Tuesday night hosting a fun virtual phone bank to educate voters about the candidates for the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) race and encourage them to request their absentee ballot ahead of the April 6th election.

Sign up for our next phonebank- March 16th @ 5:15pm- now!  They will also be texting on March 23rd  and 30th.

This year, we have a chance to elect Jill Underly, a state superintendent of schools who cares about all students and teachers, and who will take the necessary steps towards getting them back in the classroom safely and effectively.

Letter to the Editor

Below is a letter that was on the online Shawano Leader.

Can White people claim they’re not racist?

Published by andynewsengin on Thu, 03/11/2021 – 11:16am

To the editor:

Based on certain events of the past year including the infamous George Floyd affair, it has become increasingly embarrassing for me to be a White man in America. I have put a considerable effort into learning more about how deeply racism is ingrained in our society. I have come to agree that racism is systemic and that each White American bears a portion of the collective responsibility.

Let me give a personal example. If I see a White person walking on the street in front of my house, unless that person trespasses onto my property, I don’t give the matter a thought. If that same incident involved a Black person, I would have the reflexive reaction of “What is he or she doing in my neighborhood?” Another example, have you ever had the automatic verbal or internal response of “Gee, he sure does not sound Black”? I’m not proud of my reactions but they are real.

It is absolutely true that no white person can experience the daily profiling that occurs. No matter how successful in life, every Black dad or mom has to have the “talk” of how to act around a White police officer. Every Black person regardless of how successful has in effect had to start 20 yards behind a similarly qualified white person in life’s 100-yard race. Most white people’s ancestors came here by choice in search of a better life. Black people starting in the early 17th century came here as property.

Here is food for thought:

  • Consider the reaction of government to the events of Black Lives Matter protests compared to the insurrection of Jan. 6 largely put on by White people.
  • Consider that Wisconsin still does not formally acknowledge Black History Month. Politicians like Robin Vos and Jim Steineke let the matter slide and when asked why offer no response.
  • Consider the actions of Republicans to suppress the scope of absentee voting and voting by mail for the implicit purpose of impairing the process for people of color — a modern day version of Jim Crow.

I have submitted this piece as a form of personal and public shaming. I need to take ownership. Though not a traditional Christian, I do believe that Jesus came not only to comfort the afflicted but to afflict the comfortable. Think about it.

Ken Kroenke, Shawano

JULY OP-ED ON INEQUALITY

If you did not get a chance to read the op-ed in the Shawano Leader, here it is:

OUR PAST ACTIONS DON’T SHOW EQUITY

“…with liberty and justice for all.”

How often have we said those words when reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and not really thought about what the words really meant.  Being free within a society from the oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life is liberty.  It means civil rights and human rights.

Just behavior or treatment is justice.  It means fairness and equity.Since 1892 these words have been recited as an expression of allegiance to the flag of the United States and the republic of the United States of America.  However, the “for all” part of the pledge has never really applied to everyone. Continue reading

Who’s muddying the election year waters?

To the editor:

Although I agree with Wendy Gribben to a point — “government for the people” and “every vote is important” — I do believe we still have a big decision to make this election year.

“Vote your conscience.”

Now for the real problem. Mr. Watters is so quick to blame all these murders, yes, senseless murders, on our elected Democratic officials that he fails to look at who voted for the gun laws that are now in place.

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Letter: State residents need to stand up for public education

To the editor:

The continued destruction of the public school system in Wisconsin needs to stop. The provisions of Act 10 eliminated teacher bargaining powers and effectively silenced their voices. Now reduced to second-class citizenship, these teachers would put their jobs in jeopardy if they made any strong protests in regard to the current reductions in public school budgets.

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Letter to the Editor: Walker is Not Moving Wisconsin Forward

We are being bombarded by TV and radio ads promoting our next governor. The profusion of ads is the result of the Citizen’s United Supreme Court ruling which allowed seemingly unlimited caps on campaign donations so today big money groups like the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce Foundation and the Koch Brothers can attempt to buy elections. Walker’s campaign is using this money to flood the airwaves with negative ads against Mary Burke and half truths about himself. Too much of this money is from out of state. Continue reading

Author Refuses to “Stand With Walker”

There is a very real threat to the continuation of the tradition of family farming in Wisconsin if Governor Walker is reelected. The threat is that he is trying to give the hard earned use value assessment tax status to his wealthy out of state investors. In Walker’s first budget he inserted the policy change to allow non residents to own more than 640 acres of farmland. Fortunately, it was removed from the final budget. Outside investors will drive up farmland prices beyond the market prices. The prices of crops grown on the land will not be a factor in determining the price of the land. Farmers will not be able to afford to compete with these investors. Continue reading