Dedicated to The Wisconsin I Love: Sam Cooke, “A Change Is Gonna Come,” 1964 and The Impressions, “We’re A Winner,” 1967
Turn this up. LOUD.
Still feeling great today from being among the throngs of Wisconsinites at the Capitol Square yesterday.
Love you, Fabulous 14, including sista State Senator Lena Taylor of Milwaukee, and State Senators Tim Carpenter, Spencer Coggs, Tim Cullen, Jon Erpenbach, Dave Hansen, Jim Holperin, Robert Jauch, Chris Larson, Julie Lassa (who is pregnant), Mark Miller, Fred Risser, Kathleen Vinehout, and Robert Wirch.
Love you, fiery firefighters who are champing at the bit for a general strike.
Love you, all the other black folks and people of color I didn’t know who are members of unions and to whom I exchanged nods, smiles, raised fists, and hellos. The middle classes of color also benefit from unions, and they are also under attack as never before.
Love you, Tony Shalhoub, Jesse Jackson and Susan Sarandon (and Michael Moore, Bradley Whitford, Ed Schultz, and others who came earlier) for encouraging us to keep up the fight, because it is now going to be up to the courts, the lawyers, the lawmakers, the voters, the recalls, and first off, the April 5 Supreme Court election between candidate JoAnne Kloppenburg and Walker stalwart and State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser.
Love you all.
Even though we lost this one battle, we won. And we’re going to continue to win. We woke up the entire nation, not just Wisconsin to what is occurring. And we can continue to teach the nation about getting organized and fighting back. Even with the ones who voted these Baggers and Unreconstructed Republicans and Neo-Southerners Come North who are experiencing buyer’s remorse. It’s not over yet, but we have to keep pushing and not be discouraged at setbacks. This is no game. We’ve got to get to work and make it happen for ourselves. Gathering and demonstrating is all very fine, with good feelings all around. Work–real political work–takes guts and tenacity, even through times of monotony.
Why have I have chosen these songs that are more identified with the civil rights/black pride struggle? Especially Curtis Mayfield’s song written for The Impressions that was even banned on several radio stations at the time because the lyrics were scary?
Because the lyrics are still scary. These lyrics are for anyone regaining their self-respect and self-worth about themselves, about the work that they do, and about the recompense that they deserve, and also how we negotiate honorably about all these things, if not with respect, with each other.
And a change is going to come to Wisconsin. Bet on it.