Wisconsin protests—now with farmers (and tractors)

via Boing Boing by Maggie Koerth-Baker on 3/7/11


convoy!.jpg

Note: This is not an image from next week’s farmer-labor day at the Wisconsin Capitol Building. That hasn’t happened yet. This is an image meant to illustrate the concept of a tractorcade for anyone who’s never seen one. Apologies for any confusion.

Tens of thousands of people were in Madison, Wisconsin, again this weekend, continuing to protest Governor Scott Walkers attempt to do away with collective bargaining for some state employees. We’re at Day 18 now, if you’re keeping track.

This has been a very weird event, by U.S. standards. We don't often have protest movements that sustain their momentum, at this level, over this long a period of time. Hell, one day is usually the maximum. So it's been interesting to me to see the Madison protests evolve. Up next, apparently, are theme protests. Next Saturday, March 12, starting at noon, it's farmer-labor day at the Wisconsin Capitol Building—with farmers from across the state set to bring a tractorcade of support to the protesters in Madison. Yes. A tractorcade. This just got 10x more awesome.

Next week, farmers from across the dairyland will bring tractors and solidarity to the WI capitol to fight for labor rights and a just state budget. Rural communities will be disproportionately hurt by the cuts to education and badgercare, and farmers in Wisconsin stand with state workers, and all working and middle class families in the state. The event is sponsored by Family Farm Defenders, Wisconsin Farmers Union and Land Stewardship project.

All farmers and eaters welcome and encouraged to come! If you have a tractor and would like to join in the tractorcade please contact John Peck at Family Farm Defenders – (608) 260-0900; familyfarmdefenders@yahoo.com

Couple of other notes:
• Remember how cleanup in the Capitol Building was supposed to cost $7 million. Yeah. That’s been retracted. The State is now estimating $350,000.
• The City of Madison issued a press release on Saturday thanking protesters for another huge protest with no arrests and no citations. That's right. In 18 days, nobody has done anything worthy of arrest, or even ticketing. Good work, Wisconsin! In the Upper Midwest, even our “thugs” are well above average.

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