Why nothing changes
Missed the westside Neighborhood Safety Conversation held the past weekend at Elver Park.
Organizer Bonnie Roe (she is a true blessing) pronounced it “A big success! About 75 of us gathered, despite iffy weather.”
Police Chief Shon Barnes and Midtown Captain Jason Freedman attended. So did Deputy Mayor Linda Vakunta, Alders Barbara Harrington-McKinney, Yannnette Figeuroa Cole, Gary Halverson, and Christian Albouras. Also Anthony Cooper and Nick Loumus from Focused Interruption.
Bonnie Roe reports that Chief Barnes said the proposed 5% cut to the police budget, as requested by the Mayor, would be devastating. “They cannot afford to lose any Officers.”
Been following the back and forth since then on the NextDoor social app. Commenter from Midtown Commons neighborhood:
Thank you, Bonnie, for trying. Several years ago we had a similar meeting at the church on McKenna with the police chief, one of the judges, Mayor Soglin and others, hosted by alder McKinney. Same concerns, went nowhere. In fact it’s much worse. I truly hope you have better luck than we did. It’s a sad state of affairs.
Elections, people. Elections. Orchard Ridge/Nakoma/Midvale Heights elected a “Re-imagine/Defund Police” alder this past Spring (Yannette Figueroa Cole). What do you expect?
“Uncalled for comment, Mr. Blaska!” Lisa from Fitchburg thundered.
A neighbor in Parkwood Hills came to our defense. “This is about leadership or lack of it.” He was countered by a good progressive in Ald. Tag Evers’s Vilas neighborhood:
“Funny thing is nothing has changed at MPD but you keep believing that an overfunded police department is the answer.” In other words, the lady believes police are the problem!
Blaska noted that “Police did not kill the 17-yr-old boy in drive-by shooting on Lathrop Street on August 14. Nor are they stealing our cars. But you keep believing in defunding the police. May be why nothing has changed in Madison.” Your intrepid bloggeur then risked another banishment from NextDoor by suggesting:
We need people to run for local office. We need good common sense citizens to run for alder, county board, and especially school board. We need to quit teaching kids that some are victims — and therefore powerless to direct the arc of their lives. Where there are victims, there must be oppressors. We need to quit teaching you cannot succeed until we can get those oppressors to admit their guilt.
To which, a lady from the Foxridge neighborhood judged: “Wow. Your an unpleasant and judgmental person.”
Blaska’s Bottom Line: Maybe, but at least my grammar is correct.