Thursday, January 7, 2016

Have a seat, Bob Gannon

Legislators should focus on uniting the state, not on finding ways to divide us further

My state rep, Bob Gannon (R-Slinger), needs to have a seat.

As Chris so eloquently wrote about yesterday, not only is his recent press release racist, but it's also fact free. Milwaukee is the economic engine of the state.

But unfortunately, his press release resonates with so many people who live out here. Their disdain for Milwaukee and anybody who isn't white is clear. I moved to Washington County from the city when I was a teen and it was kind of a culture shock. I've heard so many openly racist comments from people who live here I've lost count.

They express such contempt for our wonderful city and how "dangerous" it is, etc. Then they drive into our fine city to work every day, and then dash back to the burbs where they live.

I find that frustrating, and it pisses me off. Milwaukee is good enough for these folks to collect a paycheck in and when they want to go to Summerfest, Brewers Games, State Fair etc...but they'll rant about how bad it is and how much they hate it. Just lovely.

I find Gannon's comments super disappointing as well because the WOW counties (Waukesha,Ozaukee and Washington) should really be looking for ways to work together with Milwaukee on things and as a region. Lots of folks from those counties (who don't hate the city) come down on the weekends with their families to our attractions like the art museum and lake front.

Just after he got elected Waukesha County Executive (and right before he left the state legislature) State Sen. Paul Farrow supported and voted for (PDF) the Bucks arena, as well as other initiatives for Waukesha and Milwaukee to work together on. We are stronger as a region and a state when we work together on things -- and find solutions -- rather than looking for people to blame or be angry at, as Gannon does in his statement.

The press release from my new state rep only serves to cause more divisiveness between the two counties when we should be having more collaboration.

I call on Bob Gannon to apologize and retract his statement.

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