Saturday, December 23, 2023

Taking a break.

 But, everything must change.

“If animal agriculture were phased out over 15 years and all other greenhouse-gas emissions were to continue unabated, the phase-out would create a 30-year pause in net greenhouse gas emissions and offset almost 70 percent of the heating effect of those emissions through the end of the century.”

Animal ag is not only bad for global heating, it's bad for animals, especially species on the extinction escalator

Transportation is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than any other sector. Cars and light trucks make up more than half of transportation sector emissions. Are you driving a fossil-fueled vehicle? Stop. Just stop. Or at least cut back. Walk. Ride a bike. Take the bus. Share your ride and trips with others. Take the train or a bus for long distance travel. Stop flying. 

If the systems that help you reduce transportation-related emissions don't work for you, use your power/voice/privilege to insist that they improve. If they don't work for you, they don't work for a lot of people. Help improve the systems.

Thursday, December 14, 2023

3rd CD Candidate Forum

Who will replace the guy who yells at teenagers while hosting beer crawls through the Capitol?

Join Citizen Action for a virtual candidate forum on Sunday, December 17 at 6 p.m. featuring candidates challenging Derrick Van Orden for the 3rd Congressional District in Western Wisconsin. The forum will feature questions from Citizen Action Organizing co-op members who live in the Third Congressional District. Citizen Action has three separate organizing co-ops located in the district.

This forum is part of Citizen Action's endorsement process and will include a survey of attendees on their candidate preferences and if they think Citizen Action’s Board should vote to endorse in the Democratic Primary. All final endorsement decisions are made by their Board, but member opinions matter very much in that decision.


Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Just say no (part 2)

So, a legislatire passes and a governor signs  a budget, and then a gerrymandered legislator can put a hold on distributing the money? I don't think that's how it's supposed to work, but here, nothing's over until the MINjority twists the rules enough to "win."

Now, it looks like threats of not finalizing confirmation of one regent (another abnormal behavior by the hostage-takers) may cause her to switch her vote. Bad precedent. Bad governance. Still no input on the "deal" from students and staff. 

Monday, December 11, 2023

Everything must change


While 2023 is not yet over, a provisional report from the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) confirmed that it is set to be the warmest on record, with global temperatures rising 1.4 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. ... From deadly Cyclone Daniel in Libya in September to devastating floods in the Horn of Africa following five consecutive seasons of drought and severe smoke pollution from Canada’s forest blazes, WMO’s report highlights the grim effects of climate upheaval on lives, health and livelihoods.  

Throughout the year, communities suffering from extreme weather around the world faced food insecurity and displacement. 

Final five voting


Join the League of Women Voters for their last program of the year, a look at a form of instant runoff voting known as Final Five voting. The guests seem to be connected to the American Enterprise Institute. The program is on December 13 from noon to 1 at The Waterfront OR on Zoom. (Lunch reservations are closed, but you can still attend the program if you wish.)

Final five/instant runoff voting has been touted as a way to make elections less contentious and candidates nicer (so voters might choose them as their second or third choice). But what if voters don't pay attention to what candidates really represent? 

Much more needs to be understood about how this could be hacked, and especially about how campaigns use psychology to  twist, distort, lie, and manipulate.

Register here:

Friday, December 08, 2023

Just say NO


On December 9th, the Universities of Wisconsin Board of Regents will be meeting to vote on a resolution based on this proposal negotiated with Republican Legislators. This resolution would restrict diversity, equity and inclusion and further enshrine the far right's agenda at our educational institutions. 

Sign on to tell the Board of Regents that we need them to keep working for a better deal.

Students, say no.

Thursday, December 07, 2023

Transportation Input!

Two important opportunities to share our priorities and ideas about how we get around in our community are upon us.

For decades, cars have had priority--in funding, space, health, and safety. As we now know, car driving creates greenhouse gases that are driving the planet to uninhabitable extremes. Air pollution from fossil fuels, including cars, kills millions of people per year. The National Safety Council reports that 46,000 people died in traffic crashes last year and traffic crashes are a leading cause of death for children. Cars and car storage eat up vast amounts of public space that could better be used for housing, business, parks, play, and life. 

Budgets are skewed toward motor vehicles. The Sierra Club notes that, "Nearly half of WisDOT's $3 billion annual budget is spent on highway construction and expansion," nine times more than on public transit and rail. In La Crosse, we all subsidize free or low-cost public parking whether or not we drive cars. We all live with the mess, pollution, and danger of mostly free public street parking. We all lose out on the taxes, small businesses, housing, and green space we could have if cars didn't take up so much space. We all pay for the infrastructure that is almost solely for cars (Where are the safe bike lanes on Losey, South Ave., and La Crosse Street? Paint is not safe infrastructure.)

There are two chances to push for better funding, planning, and priorities for walking, biking, and taking the bus, the cleanest, safest, least expensive ways to get around.

First, on Thursday, December 14, Talk Transit with MTU staff and riders from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Southside Neighborhood Center, 1300 6th St. S. (accessible via #1 and circulators). Even if you are not currently a regular bus rider, your voice is needed. If reducing emissions and pollution, improving safety and equity, and boosting community cohesion means more people taking the bus, the MTU needs to hear, and be able to report, what changes are needed to get YOU on the bus. If you are a rider, feed back about what you love and what could be better. 

And, you are invited to "up and down vote" the suggestions neighbors have made as part of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan update. 

Review the comments added about walking and bicycling in La Crosse made by fellow community members and like or dislike those that you agree or disagree with. This will help the planners understand which issues are most important to La Crosse residents as they being to develop plan recommendations. Visit the site at
And, if you want to think more about it, read 

You can order it or borrow it (email).

Tuesday, December 05, 2023

What Happened to You?

 From La Crosse Waking Up White:

The last public presentation for the Regional Read of What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing is this Thursday, Dec 7 at 6:30 p.m. at The Nature Place, doors and music open at 6pm. We are having speakers from The Resilient Option in Rochester, MN come and speak about practical strategies to manage stress often caused by adversity to improve overall health and well-being.

Learn more here:

Friday, December 01, 2023

School District Candidate Training

The Board of Education for the School District of La Crosse will be hosting an informational meeting about the upcoming April election and available positions on the school board.

Those interested in serving students, staff, and the La Crosse community as a member of the Board of Education are encouraged to attend this meeting. The meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, December 6, 2023, at 6:00 p.m. and will be hosted at the Hogan Administrative Center in Room 209 located at 807 East Avenue South in La Crosse.

Residents planning to attend the workshop are asked to please RSVP to the superintendent’s office by sending an email to or by calling 608.789.7659 to register for the meeting.

An election will be held in the School District of La Crosse on Tuesday, April 2, 2024, for the following board of education seats. The terms of office for school board members include 3-year terms.

Incumbents are Annie Baumann, Brad Quarberg, and Jeff Jackson.

To be placed on the spring ballot, a Campaign Registration Statement, Declaration of Candidacy, and Nomination Papers must be filed no later than 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 2, 2024, in the office of the School District Clerk, 807 East Avenue South, La Crosse.

The first day to circulate nomination papers was December 1, 2023.

Detailed information about the role of a Board member is available in the Wisconsin Association of School Boards (WASB) Guide for Candidates.

Nick Marcou | Communications Coordinator
School District of La Crosse
o: 608.789.8460 c: 608.498.9144

Vets for Voting Reform


Wednesday, 12/6 

- NOON -


Many people are expressing concerns about the electoral system in the United States, notably the partisan primary process. There is an active movement among military veterans to do something about these concerns. Panelists from Veterans for All Voters will discuss their efforts to build and mobilize a community of veterans to advocate for meaningful electoral reform, including Final Five Voting in Wisconsin.

To participate in this no-cost virtual program, click HERE.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Planned Parenthood Town Hall


Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is hosting a virtual town hall to review of the past year through the stories of staff, supporters, patients, and community members, moderated by PPWI Board President, Eileen Force Cahill.

Tuesday, December 5th 

12:00 - 12:45 p.m.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

FREE MONEY for enviro ed

The Coulee Region Sierra Club offers grants of up to $200 each for environmental education projects to schools or community organizations involving young people at the elementary and middle school level within the CRSC region: Crawford, Grant, Jackson, La Crosse, Monroe, Richland, Trempealeau, and Vernon counties.

Applications may be completed online, emailed or mailed. The deadline for applications is January 5, 2024. For more information, visit or

These grants are funded by an annual grant from the Paul E. Stry Foundation, shared dues from Sierra Club memberships, and donations made by community members. 

To donate or learn more about the grants, email or call 608-315-2693.


Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Race in America - Giving Voice


“Fancy Dance” is a family drama and crime thriller set on a Seneca-Cayuga reservation that writer-director Erica Tremblay has called a “love letter” to Native communities. 

On Wednesday, Nov. 29 at 2:30 p.m. CT, Tremblay and actor Lily Gladstone join Washington Post Live to discuss the independent film, Native representation on screen and their own artistic journeys.


Madison-Palestine Solidarity Week



Consider carpooling:

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Killer water


Join Ricochet Media for a discussion of the new original documentary by award-winning journalist Brandi Morin and Geordie Day called ‘Killer Water,’ about water pollution affecting Indigenous communities around the Alberta oil sands. The event will feature Chief Allan Adam of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, lawyer Steven Donziger, and more. The program starts at 11 a.m. Central.

YouTube link:

Zoom link:

In northern Alberta, Canada, sit the Athabasca tar sands—the world's largest known reservoir of crude bitumen, and a major driver of Canada’s economy. The vast majority of Canadian oil production comes from the extraction and processing of the crude bitumen found in the tar sands. But while Canada prospers off the tar sands industry, Indigenous communities downstream are in the grips of its toxic impact. It is well documented that the people of Fort Chipewyan, in northern Alberta, have been struck by disproportionately high rates of cancer, and their proximity to the tar sands has long been the suspected dominant factor contributing to their sickness.

In a new feature documentary, "Killer Water," award-winning journalist Brandi Morin and award-winning filmmaker/director Geordie Day delve deep into the heart of the environmental crisis plaguing the Alberta oil sands, uncovering the hidden truths that have long been ignored. The film exposes the detrimental impact of toxic tailings ponds leakage on the delicate ecosystems, water sources, and human life in and around Fort Chipewyan. Through stunning visuals and compelling narratives, viewers are taken on a journey that highlights the injustices faced by the Indigenous community living in the shadow of this industrial development.

“Killer Water” was produced in partnership with The Real News Network, IndigiNews, and Ricochet Media. The documentary and an accompanying transcript will be co-published by: IndigiNews, Ricochet Media, and The Real News Network on November 24, 2023.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Buy Nothing Day

For the global "well-off," the opportunity to press a button and have stuff magically appear at our* doors is a hard habit to quit. The rush to buy a 65-inch Roku TV for $369.99 or a Nintendo Switch Console Mario Cart 8 Bundle for $299.99 is news - not just that mobs crowd stores for bargains and camp out over computers to snag them, but the actual lists of "Best Friday Deals" is now part of the reporting for national news organizations. 

As the climate crisis worsens, as wars rage on, as the gap between who can afford life and who can't grows wider, as more immigrants and refugees suffer, as the social fabric seems to be breaking down, overconsuming stuff (including food) becomes a way to seek comfort. 

Stress can cause overeating. Stress can drive us to buy more and buy impulsively. At the same time, overconsumption can cause stress. And, there you have it. The engine for the sick system that is making the planet uninhabitable for most fellow creatures and our own descendants, rolls on.

At least this is what I've read.

There are other ways--sharing, reusing, finding healthier ways--but the marketing, advertising, news, entertainment, education systems pull strongly to keep us in the loop.

A start might be "mindful consumption," catching the thought that this next thing will make me feel better before the finger hits the keyboard or the foot steps into the Black Friday crowd. Will it really? Do I need it? Is there an alternative? Will I use it? Can I afford it? Being aware of thoughts and desires, and to potential consequences, might help us not "bite the hook."

The BUY NOTHING PROJECT can help make us aware of alternatives. The ANTI-BLACK FRIDAY movement promotes sustainable behaviors. Media literacy and education can help, too. Films like "Killing Us Softly" and "Advertising at the Edge of the Apocalypse" can start to deprogram us. 

Wake up, help others wake up, and do what we can to pull away from the death spiral. Especially encourage educators and childcare providers to be aware of the predatory nature of marketing to children (and those who care for them). Or, maybe, promote ScreenFree Week during the first week of May.  

Here are a few resources. 
Can we start or support? What about weekly or monthly community swap meets - give or take, no sell. What about more neighborhood victory gardens, where local, volunteer-grown food is available free for whoever needs it? What about service swaps or babysitting co-ops? 

We have to change. We HAVE to change. Or else a baby born in the next few years will be unable to live as long as I will. Is that what we want?

I am trying, trying, trying, but as someone who's earliest memories include watching Saturday morning kid TV and commercials that looked like kid TV, and who spends, now, too much screen time (albeit, much of it in search of links for blog posts and letters to editors), and, while not in the top 1% but certainly in the top 5%, I am often afflicted by the mindless consumerism as well. 

We have to try harder I think.

*Did you know the "global top 1%" who are famously responsible for more than half of greenhouse gas emissions includes many "middle class" Americans? At least that's what Jonathan Foley pointed out recently on Twitter.

Monday, November 20, 2023

Transgender Day of Remembrance


Join the UWL community to honor the memory of transgender people whose lives have been lost to violence. Stop by the Hall of Nations throughout the day. We will hold a candle vigil at 6:00PM.

From Tuesday, November 21, 2023 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM CST at Centennial Hall of Nations.

Saturday, November 18, 2023

Monday - BadgerCare Public Option

Join Citizen Action for a press event with Rep. Doyle and Rep. Billings to show support for the BadgerCare Public Option Bill

MONDAY, NOV. 20 9:30 a.m.
St. Clare Health Mission, 916 Ferry St.

State Rep. Steve Doyle and Rep. Jill Billings, along with Driftless Region advocates, will speak at the Saint Clare Health Mission about the local impacts posed by this legislative session’s only comprehensive bill to curb the skyrocketing healthcare costs that prevent people from seeking care.

The game-changing plan would lower healthcare costs throughout the state and create more affordable healthcare options for families, small businesses and individuals. All told, the BadgerCare Public Option Bill is the most comprehensive health care reform bill proposed in Wisconsin in over a decade. The bill opens Wisconsin's popular BadgerCare program for everyone who does not have good coverage through their job. It would expand eligibility well beyond traditional Medicaid Expansion, including families of four making up to $60,000. People who make more than that could buy in at cost, and use Affordable Care Act subsidies to help with premiums.

Additionally, small employers, only one-third of which can currently afford to provide health coverage to their employees, could buy into BadgerCare at much lower cost and without the high deductibles and claims denials common in private insurance. This would dramatically improve the competitiveness of small businesses in the Driftless Region and across Wisconsin.


Kristie Tweed, Citizen Action of WI Driftless Co-Op Organizer

State Representative Steve Doyle (Democrat from 94th Assembly District - Onalaska)

State Representative Jill Billings (Democrat from the 95th Assembly District - La Crosse)

Lori Toso, Holmen Resident

Jason Larsen, Executive Director of the St. Clare Health Mission

Dr. Robert Kraig, Executive Director of Citizen Action of Wisconsin

Additional speakers may be added later 

WHEN: Monday, November 20 at 9:30 AM

WHERE: Saint Clare Health Mission, 916 Ferry St., La Crosse

Be at Saint Clare Health Mission, 916 Ferry St., La Crosse on Monday, November 20 at 9:15. Signs provided!

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

DEI Survey

All community members of La Crosse County are invited to share their views in a short and anonymous survey as part of a project to make the county more equitable and inclusive for all.

The survey is  being conducted by Chanin Kelly-Rae Consulting, LLC., a firm hired by the county to develop a Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging plan. As part of that work, Kelly-Rae has met with dozens of community organizations and interviewed hundreds of residents from every corner of the county.

To participate in the online version of the survey, click here. The survey will close at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 4. Learn more about the county’s equity work at

Friday, November 10, 2023

Harry Chapin film


Get ready to fill some food pantries! 

Join us for a free screening of an inspiring documentary about the legendary Harry Chapin, and in his honor help us fill the shelves of WAFER and The Hunger Task Force.  While this event is free we encourage you to register with the button to the side and bring two non perishable items to donate at the event. Thanks and see you there! GET YOUR TICKETS HERE.

Monday, November 06, 2023

Nov. 14 - Politics & Pints

Politics & Pints is coming back to La Crosse! So brush up on current events, Wisconsin politics and some local history and join us at Pearl Street Brewery on November 14. from 6 to 8 p.m. Hosted by Opportunity Wisconsin, For Our Future Wisconsin, and Citizen Action Driftless Co-op. Trivia teams will be limited to 6 people. Learn more here:

Saturday, November 04, 2023

Preparing for 2024

Issues Briefing:

Preparing for Elections in 2024

Three Topics and Three Days
The Wisconsin League of Women Voters will host three programs on "Preparing for Elections in 2024." Programming will be held virtually over three days, all with their own sub-theme. Visit the Issues Briefing website for more information and to register for one or more programs. It's free to attend, but make sure to register.

Thursday, Nov. 9 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

FAIR MAPS - Redistricting in Wisconsin

  • Historical overview, background, analysis and insight on redistricting in Wisconsin
  • Legal perspective on the Redistricting Lawsuit provided by Law Forward
  • Hear from Petitioners on the Redistricting Lawsuit

Saturday, Nov. 11 from 10 a.m. to Noon

Citizen Action at the State Level: Proposed Wisconsin Constitutional Amendments

  • Overview of proposed Wisconsin Constitutional Amendments
  • Presentation on Separation of Powers
  • Non-citizen voting and why this issues is important
  • Using private money for elections: How elections are financed and where those funds come from
  • Solutions from another State: How the Ohio League and partners successfully achieved retaining the 50% threshold for passing Constitutional Amendments

Tuesday, Nov. 14 from 6:30 to  8:30 p.m.
  • Election administration and protecting election workers
  • What are current barriers to voting and what can be done?
  • Overview of LWVUS Moonshot Goal: Abolishing the Electoral College
  • Status on achieving the National Popular Vote


Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Native American Heritage Monthr

November is Native American Heritage Month. Here are some local and online programs and speakers. I'll add more as I learn of them.

November 1: A free online town hall from the National Constitution Center on "Native Peoples and Redefining U.S. History," from 11 a.m. (our time) to noon. Speakers include historians, Ned Blackhawk, Brenda Child, and Richard White. They will discuss Blackhawk’s national bestseller, The Rediscovery of America: Native Peoples and the Unmaking of U.S. History. Jeffrey Rosen moderates. Register for the link at

On November 1 at 1:30 p.m. Central, the School Library Journal will host a webcast on Native Storytelling in Children's Books with Angeline Boulley and Cynthia Leitich Smith discussing Indigenous representation, craft, and the future of Indigenous kid lit, moderated by Dr. Debbie Reese. Register at

On November 2 at 4 p.m., an online webinar  from the University of Mississippi will feature Joshua Whitehead, a Two-Spirit, Oji-nêhiyaw member of Peguis First Nation (Treaty 1). He is currently a Ph.D. candidate, lecturer, and Killam scholar at the University of Calgary where he studies Indigenous literatures and cultures with a focus on gender and sexuality. Register here.

On November 3, the National Constitution Center will host a student program on " Civic Stories: Indigenous Influence on the Constitution" from 11 a.m. to noon our time. Learn more at

On November 4, the National Museum of the American Indian and Teaching for Change will host "Native Knowledge 360° and Teaching for Change Virtual Teach-In" for a day of online conversation, curriculum highlights, and ideas exchange. The teach-in will be held virtually via Zoom. Registration required.

On November 6:  Keynote Speaker Leanne Vigue will speak about The Lasting Trauma of Indian Policies in the United States on Indigenous Students from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the UWL Student Union. More info:

On November 16, UWL will host a screening of the film, Warrior Lawyers: Defenders of Justice from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the UWL Student Union. Learn more here:

More resources 


Saturday, October 28, 2023

Roots of war Sunday


At 2 p.m. on Sunday, members from the Coulee Region Coalition for Palestinian Rights will explore the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, its historical context, and the role of the U.S. in a panel discussion.  

A moderated Q&A session will follow after the discussion. 

Registration is optional. The registration form also allows you to submit questions you would like the panel to address in advance. 

Register here:

Volunteer opportunity

We're excited to let you know about our upcoming Rice Pantry event on Friday, Nov 3rd, at the Hmoob Cultural and Community Agency, 1815 Ward Ave, La Crosse. We're in need of volunteers - Calling for Volunteers - and would love your help with setup, language support, guiding cars, loading rice, and cleanup. Here's the link to register: Sign-Up Form

Thank you for thinking about joining us to support our cause. Your support means a lot to us.

Warm regards,

Julia Yang
Office Assistant & Volunteer Coordinator

Cia Siab, Inc.
Building a Culturally Vibrant Hmoob Community.

Tuesday, October 24, 2023