Wednesday, March 30, 2011
It's in the same family as the glass half full vs. the glass half empty. If I have a Bad Day, it's often the kind of day with one piece of bad news after another falling my way and my coping skills failing. That's the kind of day I ask, "Oh, no. What next?!" It's the kind of feeling that has me wanting to curl up in a fetal position under a blanket and hide.
If I'm feeling decent, feeling like I can face at least a small part of the world, I'm more likely to ask, "Okay, I handled that. Now what's next?"
Wisconsin workers are asking both questions. New Jersey teachers are joining the fray by asking their own governor to respect their workloads. Instead of a sit-in or protest rally, they brought their work out in public. They carried their schoolbags to the local mall and graded papers and wrote lesson plans, creating a new way to publicize teaching: the Grade-In. By creating a useful and productive way to show their work, they asked, "What's next?"
Publicizing the importance of a job is one way to remind lawmakers that the work matters. I prepared a letter to the editor of our local paper reminding readers (and I hope, my lawmakers) that the union-busting could cost us federal grant money that would eliminate our local bus service. Did anyone in the State Senate or State Assembly realize this? Were they and the governor simply ignorant of the connection, or were they truly uncaring? My representative in the Assembly introduced an amendment that would have exempted transit systems from the law, allowing bus service to continue. In the partisan way, the Republican majority voted down every single amendment to the bill, including this one.
Amigo doesn't drive. To get to work or to enroll in higher education, he will need the Transit System in our area. He is not alone; many people without cars or without the ability to drive need the buses to get them everywhere they need to go. Amigo's reason? He's blind.
I can't be in Madison to protest because of my health. I can, however, write letters to my lawmakers and to the newspapers. One newspaper already contacted me for more information; now what's next?! Get on board the bus and save public transit!Stumble It!