Below are links to the articles I wrote for one of UW-Madison’s student newspapers, The Daily Cardinal. The articles are split into features, politics, and campus/city news.
Time for change? For students without financial support from home, college costs more than just money
Published: Thursday, October 18, 2007
On a typical Thursday, Kathryn Grajeda, a UW-Madison junior majoring in engineering mechanics, finishes class at noon and hurries home to work. Grajeda is luckier than many student workers–she can work from her apartment and set her own hours for her job at Total Water Treatment Systems handling data entry and spreadsheets. But the 10-20 hours she works in addition to a 17-credit, six-class schedule is critical, because Grajeda pays for school entirely on her own. When she graduates in 2010, she anticipates $40,000 in debt.
Grajeda described her situation as a Catch-22. “I love my job, but it can be inconvenient because it takes away time from studying,” she said. “But I can’t feel anything about that because there’s nothing I can do about it. I have to work to be here.”
Willy Street melting pot played host to activism, local artistry of ‘working class’
Published: Monday, April 24, 2006
Part six of a semester-long series East of the Capitol lies a neighborhood whose rundown, shabby appearance attracted the attention of energetic artists and activists in the turbulent ’70s. Today, that spirit of individualism has blossomed into a center of local businesses and diverse residents who maintain the neighborhood’s original closeness.
Though quiet today, “Miff-land” was a hotbed of unrest, activism and crime
Published: Sunday, March 26, 2006
Formerly a well spring of political activism, the Mifflin and Bassett Street neighborhoods have settled down into adult, residential neighborhoods as students have moved out and new construction has begun in the historic area.
Langdon Street once hot bed for frat/co-op tension
Published: Monday, February 20, 2006
The Langdon Street area was once the heart of UW-Madison student activity. While the construction of off-campus apartments and dormitories has shifted some of the focus away from Langdon Street fraternities and sororities, the neighborhood is still alive and well. Langdon Street was one of Madison’s first residential neighborhoods. Named for John Langdon, a signer of the U.S. Constitution, it was one of the city’s most prestigious areas in the second half of the 19th century.
Doyle to lighten up on smoking in bars
Published: Thursday, February 8, 2007
Gov. Jim Doyle announced Tuesday he is open to exempting bars from his proposed statewide smoking ban, giving hope to legislators and bar owners still opposed to the Madison city ban against smoking in public establishments.
Risser takes title of longest serving lawmaker in U.S.
Published: Thursday, January 18, 2007
First elected in 1956, state Sen. Fred Risser, D-Madison, became the longest-serving state lawmaker in the country this month. At age 79, Risser has become a respected leader in the Legislature, and the senator said he has no plans to quit yet.
Wis. reps, senators reap benefits from sick leave
Published: Monday, November 27, 2006
In mid-October, state legislators criticized UW System faculty after an audit showed that school employees reported much less sick leave than other state workers. But another audit performed recently found that state lawmakers themselves report almost no sick leave.
Wis. attorney general race goes down to the wire
Published: Wednesday, November 8, 2006
The race for state attorney general between Democrat Kathleen Falk and Republican opponent J.B. Van Hollen remained in a dead-heat as ballots continued to be counted early Wednesday morning. As of 2:45 a.m., Van Hollen had 50.1 percent of the vote and Falk held 49.9 percent.
Death penalty aided by high profile crime
Published: Monday, November 6, 2006
High-profile murders in Wisconsin’s recent history have prompted the death penalty referendum appearing on the Nov. 7 ballot and may strongly influence voters’ stance on the issue, experts say. But some law experts see more problems than benefits in reconsidering capital punishment.
State Senator Alan Lasee, R-De Pere, authored the resolution in January 2005. “There have been a number of murders that have occurred here in Wisconsin that have been extremely disturbing,” he said, referencing Jeffrey Dahmer and David Spanbauer, the 1990s serial rapist and murderer.
Activists list human error, race as reasons against death penalty
Published: Thursday, October 26, 2006
Death penalty opponents addressed law enforcement error, racial disparity and mental competency at a panel Wednesday night at the Wisconsin Historical Society. Cynthia Hirsch, a former Illinois prosecutor, said death penalty cases take a heavy toll on prosecutors. “[A death penalty case] becomes a career case, and suddenly deciding halfway down the road that ‘maybe we’ve got the wrong guy’ or ‘maybe the death penalty isn’t appropriate’ could have been career disaster,” she said.
“The result of all this pressure cooking . . . is that good, competent people lose judgment,” Hirsch said. “We develop a kind of tunnel vision; we are absolutely convinced in the merits of our case because we have so much at stake in this case.”
3rd gov. debate sees sparks fly
Published: Sunday, October 22, 2006
The third and final gubernatorial debate Friday night in La Crosse focused mostly on healthcare and education issues, and the candidates took their last opportunity to defend themselves and attack each other.
Cash could determine future of gay marriage
Published: Tuesday, September 5, 2006
The contentious statewide debate regarding the legality of same-sex marriages may be decided ultimately by the power of the dollar. Despite evenly divided public opinion, there is a large discrepancy in the amount of funds the two major advocacy campaigns representing each side have managed to raise.
Dems and GOP call candidates ’main focus’ of Nov. election
Published: Thursday, June 1, 2006
Despite the state Assembly’s recent decision to put the death penalty referendum on the November ballot along with the ’Defense of Marriage Act’ amendment, Democrat and Republican officials agree those two issues will not be the main focus of the 2006 governor election.
Kids may not have emotional needs met through virtual-parenting bill
Published: Friday, April 14, 2006
When parents divorce, oftentimes distance further divides parents from their children, and typically the non-custodial parent loses their close relationship with their children. However, thanks to new legislation, this will be avoided through virtual-visitation privileges via the Internet.
South Dakota abortion ban may put limits on birth control options for Wisconsin women
Published: Monday, March 20, 2006
With the introduction of legislation to repeal Wisconsin’s criminalized abortion statute, state anti-abortion and abortion-rights activists are preparing for a fight about contraception, health issues and rape victims.
Political party organization has strong implications close to home
Published: Wednesday, February 15, 2006
From municipal to state and national governments, political organization has continually proven a capstone of efficiency, often characterizing and defining its leadership. Although public opinion may hold that Republicans are organized machines, while Democrats are fly-by-their-pants hippies, such characterization may not accurately capture the complexities beneath, professors say.
Students plead guilty to hate crime charges
Published: Thursday, April 27, 2006
Two college students pled guilty to charges stemming from their involvement in the Ogg Hall hate crime in December after seeing their charges reduced. Kevin Cochacki, a freshman from Purdue University, and Caleb Moore, an Auburn University freshman, pled guilty to disorderly conduct misdemeanors after felony criminal damage to property charges against them were dropped.
Chancellor asks student gov’t committee to rethink budgets
Published: Friday, April 14, 2006
The Associated Students of Madison’s Conference Committee met Thursday night to discuss a letter sent by UW-Madison Chancellor John Wiley listing student organizations whose budgets need to be reviewed because they have a religious affiliation or use segregated fees to pay rent for facilities.
Mayor Dave serves cake at city’s 150th
Published: Sunday, April 9, 2006
Madison’s sesquicentennial celebration at Monona Terrace was a blend of art and ethnic heritage. But despite the variety of historical and cultural activities, the most popular event was the cake.
Lower beer garden capacity could hurt bars
Published: Monday, February 27, 2006
With the Madison Fire Department proposing a new capacity maximum on outdoor beer gardens, some Madison bars may have to brace for a drop in income on football Saturdays. Beer gardens are parking lots next to bars that convert into fenced areas where large numbers of people can drink in a party atmosphere before and after home football games. For many, they have become an established part of any game at Camp Randall.
This last one’s just for fun. A student reporter quoted me on my thoughts about tanning while I was sitting out on Bascom Hill shortly after graduation: Too Much Tanning Not a Bright Idea