By Bruce Fealk on August 11, 2013
I haven't contributed here for at least a couple years, but events happening in Madison, WI, where my two beautiful grandchildren live, compel me to write something about the really heartwarming Solidarity Sing Along.
When likely presidential candidate, Scott Walker, dropped the bomb, the revoking of collective bargaining rights for most public employees, thousands, then hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets and even occupied the Capitol for a couple weeks in 2011.
Then in March of 2011 a few people started what became the Solidarity Sing Along. Every day for more than two and a half hears the Sing Along takes place in the Capitol rotunda from 12-1 p.m. The Sing Along sings adapted union songs, folk songs, etc.
In June of this year a federal judge issued a temporary ruling on a case brought by one of the regular singers. The judge issued a temporary ruling until the full trial takes place in January 2014. As part of his ruling the just said that groups of 20 or more needed a permit to hold an event in the rotunda.
The Solidarity Sing Along takes the position that under the First Amendment, they don't need a permit to conduct the daily Sing Along.
About three weeks ago, the Capitol Police stepped up their intimidation of the Solidarity Sing Along (SSA) and started arresting people participating in the Sing Along, handcuffing and giving tickets to more than 200 people since the crackdown on the Sing Along began.
On Wednesday of this week, I was one of the 20 or so people that was handcuffed and given a ticket for unlawful assembly, which carries a fine of $200.50. The people that have received tickets have been going to court on every ticket and requesting jury trials.
On Tuesday of this past week, the Capitol Police started warning tourists,observers and even legislators that they could be arrested for even observing the Sing Along.
I captured on video an officer going from person to person warning them that if they continued to observe the Sing Along they were subject to arrest.
I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't witnessed it with my own eyes.