Madison protests and prayers

Well, I entered the week with high expectations of blogging on our latest topic of how much stuff to own, and then the strike hit, and how can you talk of anything else?  If you live outside Wisconsin and haven’t heard, there’s big-news protests going on downtown Madison over teacher salary/benefit cuts, collective bargaining rights cuts, and more.

The whole thing just makes me feel sad.  I have teacher friends questioning with their whole hearts whether to be at school or not during these three days of protests causing school closures. I give them huge respect and want them to be paid well for the excellent work they do.  I want my children to grow up in a state that is still known across the country for high quality education.

There’s a lot of anger, and when people are angry they don’t always think straight.  It calls for huge prayer.

A friend married to a doctor responded to a Facebook post I’d made, saying:

I WILL pray for WI and the nation, but…What tax break is the upper class getting. My husband works his BUTT off – crazy hours, over night, he trained for YEARS – and he has to give almost half of his earnings back to the government. ALMOST HALF! The fair thing would be to have a consistent percentage of everyone’s salaries. It’s a percentage – it means the upper class is paying A LOT more in taxes. And, because he’s not part of a union and they didn’t protest, people also don’t know that his salary went down about 10% last year and is projected to maybe go down about another 10% based on changes made especially to medicare reimbursement, etc. Okay, I’m done now – sorry. It is just frustrating to me that everybody thinks all these things are happening to just the middle class and nothing is happening to the other classes. Things are happening to everyone. I don’t like [people saying how] Walker and the republicans are out to attack the middle class. I think they are just trying to balance a budget.

I responded:

I hear ya. Didn’t know docs had 10% pay cuts happening. I’m not a fan of [anybody's] angry tone, either, and I’ve also been refraining from saying much about all this because I tend to think it’s a more complicated issue than it looks on the surface, too. Hence my simple comment: pray. I’m hoping God’s got a solution better than I could come up with, and better than what seems to be on the table.

I’ve been struck by having protests happening almost so close I could hear them outside my window.  It makes it hard to ignore, hard to not ask, “How should I respond to this?”

How do you think Wisconsin should make up for its debt problem?

Do you think the teachers should go back to work on Monday?

How would you convince gung-ho no-more-tax Republican Governor Scott Walker to protect equal education and keep fair pay for middle and lower class jobs?

One Response to “Madison protests and prayers”

  1. [...] down to the Wisconsin capitol yesterday to see some of the hoopla.  My husband Adam Jeske snapped [...]

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