In the News

WNPJ members in the news: Compassion, campaign disclosure and Medicaid funding

Meditation is not the pathway to compassion. "Meditation does not make one more compassionate. I wish dearly that it were otherwise," says Rick Vogle of Alliance for Animals, A WNPJ member group. He goes on to criticize the Dalai Lama and Richard Davidson, director of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at UW-Madison and a friend of the Dalai Lama and meditation proponent. Davidson's work is involves invasive studies of monkey brains. The Dalai Lama supports such work and eats meat, practices Vogle believes are incompatible with the compassion for all sentient beings Buddhism promotes.Capital Times, 6/8/13.

Covering ground to ground the drones media coverage

WNPJ member group Voices for Creative Nonviolence's recent "Covering Ground the Ground the Drones" peace walk brought concerns and facts about drone warfare to people across Iowa and beyond.

The Iowa City Press-Citizen reported:  "The 14-day anti-drone march from Rock Island to Des Moines has drawn activists from here in Iowa City and as far away as England.

WNPJ members write in local media

WNPJ members continue to write.  Click on the author to see the entire letters.

Henry St. Maurice: Armed civilians would not have helped in BostonWisconsin State Journal, 4/27/13

Rick Bogle: Henry Vilas Zoo not appropriate home for giraffesWisconsin State Journal, 5/25/13. Rick Bogle is co-executive director of Alliance for Animals, a WNPJ member group.

WI religious groups call for immigration reform

WNPJ member groups the Wisconsin Council of Churches and Voces de la Frontera, along with WISDOM, a congregation-based social justice network, expressed strong support for comprehensive immigration reform.  "Throughout our state’s history, Wisconsin’s faith communities have been blessed and enriched by immigrants, whether they arrived from Europe before statehood or more recently from Latin America, Southeast Asia, or elsewhere," stated the groups.

Mining and Other Environmental News

Recent articles on environmental issues in Wisconsin. Please click on the titles to read the entire articles.

Band of Ojibwe Begin Occupation of Penokee Hills: "The LCO harvest camp is small — five acres as compared to the four and a half miles proposed for the mine here. But LCO tribal elder Melvin Gasper says that this is not just a way to protest the mine plans, but also to get in the way by occupying part of it. Gasper says this is an exercise of their 1842 treaty rights in the Ceded Territory of northern Wisconsin to hunt, fish and gather." Mike Simonson, Wisconsin Public Radio. For more info on the camp, see the separate page here.

Wisconsin is testing ground for mining industry response to opposition: "The highly unpopular iron mine giveaway bill is not only a major rollback of environmentally protective mining laws, it is also a well-funded mining industry assault on the grass-roots environmental, sport fishing and tribal movement that mobilized tens of thousands of Wisconsin citizens to oppose Exxon’s destructive Crandonmine at the headwaters of the Wolf River and enact Wisconsin’s landmark “Prove It First” Mining Moratorium Law in 1998," says Al Gedicks. And the world is watching to see what happens in the face of "the massive public uproar against this project." Al Gedicks, The Capital Times, 3/7/13. Al Gedicks is executive secretary of the Wisconsin Resources Protection Council, a WNPJ member group.

Wisconsin mining law reforms benefit polluters

"After the passage of Act 1 [the Bad River Watershed Destruction Act], one of the last protections for ecologically critical watersheds in gold and base metal exploration areas in Oneida, Taylor and Marathon counties is the Mining Moratorium Law," write Al Gedicks of WNPJ member group Wisconsin Resources Protection Council (and former WNPJ Board member) and Dave Blouin of the Sierra Club in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Yet mining companies have said their top priority is repealing Wisconsin's mining moratorium - also called the "prove it first" law.

"That the North American mining industry cannot meet the Moratorium Law is a problem of its own making and purely reflects the fact that mining metallic sulfide ores remains proven to be unsafe," add Gedicks and Blouin.  "Our clean air and drinking water and the critical habitats and healthy environment we all depend on are threatened by the mining industry's so-called reforms."

Bill would limit drone surveillance in Wisconsin

A bill introduced by state Representatives Tyler August (R-Lake Geneva), David Craig (R-Town of Vernon), Frederick Kessler (D-Milwaukee) and Chris Taylor (D-Madison) would prohibit law enforcement and individuals from using drones without a warrant, except in special circumstances. It would also bar the private use of drones equipped with video or audio equipment, or with a weapon.

The ACLU of Wisconsin applauded the bill. 

Conservation Congress passes resolutions against mining law

A resolution to repeal the Iron Mining Bill (SB/AB 1) submitted by WNPJ members and allies at the April 8 Conservation Congress passed by wide margins in all four counties in which it was introduced. The total vote was 49-6 in Clark County, 221-67 in Dane County, 32-6 in LaCrosse County, and 158 to 79 in Milwaukee County. Total 460 yes, 158 no. The vote tallies are especially significant considering the resolution did not come to the floor for discussion until the end of the formal agenda, around 11:00 p.m. in Dane County.

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