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Wisconsin workers will not surrender, protest set for March 12

By staff |
March 7, 2011
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Protester speaking into a megaphone.
(Fight Back! News/Jennell Jenney)

Madison, WI - The people of Wisconsin will not give up. The fight against Governor Scott Walker's plan to destroy public sector unions, public schools and social services is a daily theme in all parts of this state. Protests are ongoing, some numbering in the thousands. Last Saturday, March 5, tens of thousands march here.

From Appleton to Eau Claire, pickets, town halls and recall petitioning consume people's daily lives. This weekend, Gov. Walker's dinner in Columbus was interrupted by 800 angry citizens. Thousands protested as well In Eau Claire, Grafton, Hudson, La Crosse and Steven's Point.

Rumors buzz through Milwaukee taverns about the 14 Democratic State Senators who are still in Illinois. People speculate whether the bill will pass and what effects it will have on state employee salaries, public schools, low-income mothers and the environment.

One taverngoer, a public school teacher who attended two protests in Madison, had strong opinions. "The truth is that everyone will be affected if Gov. Scott Walker gets his way," he said. "If Walker wins, the rich win and the many of us will have to pay."

Students and workers in Milwaukee are busy preparing for the March 12 protest in Madison. The march will likely be the largest seen since two weeks ago, when over 100,000 arrived from all over Wisconsin and chanted "Kill the bill."

Three buses will be launched from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee alone.

"We're expecting these buses to be full," commented Milwaukee Students for Democratic Society organizer Rachel Matteson. "Students and workers here are joining together to save our unions and stop the over $250 million in proposed cuts to our UW system." 

A farmers’ caravan will also join the March 5 demonstration at the Capitol. It's called the "Farmer Labor Tractorcade" and is sponsored by the Family Farm Defenders, Wisconsin Farmers Union and Land Stewardship project. Their Facebook event says "Farmers from across the dairyland will bring tractors and solidarity to the Capitol to fight for labor rights and a just state budget."

The Wisconsin AFL-CIO is planning a massive march in Madison at 3:00pm, March 12.