WISDOM: When We Stand Together, Good Things Happen!

On Tuesday night, the Oshkosh City Council unanimously approved a plan to add five plaques to the statue of Chief Oshkosh in that city's Menominee Park.

The statue itself bears no resemblance to the man who led the Menominee nation for nearly three decades in the 1800's and whose renowned diplomatic skills secured a permanent territory for his people. Instead, the statue looks like a stereotypical "noble savage" caricature of a Native American. The original plaque on the statue credits the Chief only for lending his name to the city.

 

The new plaques will tell the true story of Chief Oshkosh, and will even include a picture of what the man actually looked like. The plaques will also recognize the ways in which colonialist culture has tried to "erase" the original inhabitants of this land, an effort which included this statue.

 

Congratulations to the Menominee people, including the Menikanaehkem organization for their perseverance and hard work in bringing this change about, and for bringing along those who were reluctant. And, many thanks to ESTHER, especially Oshkosh ESTHER, for their support.

 

Finally, kudos to the City of Oshkosh. They recognized a wrong that needed to be righted, and they made a decision to tell the truth about our history. That is the kind of thing we all need to do to start to build a more equitable, respectful future.

 

While we are congratulating...  On Monday night, about 650 people showed up in Kenosha for a "Re-do" of a public meeting for the Kenosha Unified School District. They came to reject some bad policies advanced at a previous meeting, in which a small group tried to push ideas to weaken the public schools. Most of those 650 people were organized by the Kenosha Education Justice Coalition, of which CUSH is an important member.

 

Before that, on November 2, the people of the Mequon-Thiensville School District voted overwhelmingly to reject a politically-motivated attempt to recall members of that school board. Again, people came out in numbers to stand up for our public schools.

 

In just over a week, we have seen three examples of communities coming together to stand up for truth and for equity. I am so glad to see that WISDOM members were in the middle of it!  Together, we can and will be champions for our values in the public arena.

 

In Solidarity,

David Liners

Executive Director WISDOM

WISDOM
Address: 2821 N 4th St Ste 534, Milwaukee, WI 53212
Phone: 414-831-2070
E-Mail: office@wisdomwisconsin.org