Extracurricular sports will not survive Walker’s cuts
The high school basketball or football game is one of the most exciting community events in all of the small towns and villages that dot the State of Wisconsin. When the team is going on to a sectional or state competition, the highways and byways are marked with home made signs that read go Trojans, Beavers, Wildcats and just about every other animal or warrior mascot representing the thousands of students in our public schools. The levels of creativity and innovation in the mounting of signs of support for the team would put the Superbowl ad makers to shame. “GO MASCOT” written across the length of a white feed tube stretched along the road, or on a banner supported by balloons over main street with more displays of streamers and flashing lights strung across the windows of every business and office on Main Street. Above all this signage and decoration is the spirit of the town or village itself as people in the street or the local cafe cheer and pat the backs of the staff and players that have put the town on the map and plans are made to have the police or fire truck escort the bus of heroic players into town at the end of the game.
All this is on the wane and will end
The first signs of the demise of high school extracurricular sport events is already as evident as dry rot on the foundation. Towns, villages, and communities have been given free admission to the house of political smoke and mirrors that have framed villages, schools, and children as pawns in a political process. The mirrors reflect distorted images of unions, teachers, benefits with huge billowing puffs of collective bargaining and benefits. The very elegant display leaves the people walking away with shaking heads and rumblings how teachers are over paid and under worked villains. That, somehow, the very community members who attended the high school and hung the banners and beat the drums, were part of some conspiracy to over reward the coaches and teachers who rode the bus, chaperoned the dance, and took tickets at the wrestling match. They had not realized that they had been victims of big union bosses and money grabbing coaches and teachers, when they carried home the two foot conference trophy amid cheer and the honking of horns, just a few years ago.
What has changed the school or the politics?
Before people buy into the smoke and mirrors of the talking heads making claims as large as any given TV screen that “It is working”, look at the first rumblings of the end of high school basketball, wrestling, and football games. Turn off the TV and go to the next game. Look at the faces of the kids on the court, mat or field. Look at the spirit of the fans from both teams rising to their feet to cheer a score or question a bad call. When you leave, understand that all of this is in jeopardy and do something about it before it’s too late.
Report of WEAU TV Eau Claire
Did you know that, under Walker’s cuts, many teachers are forced to take second jobs to make ends meet?
And that leads us to Oakwood Mall. By day Mary teaches middle school phy-ed, by night she works at Scheels customer service center to help pay all her bills and have a little extra at the end of each month.
And Mary says she’s not alone,”One gentleman is toward the end of his teaching career, he needed a second job so he could pay for his kids college. And other people are to the point now they are struggling to make their house payment, or they’ve really had to cut back on extras,” she says.
This the beginning of the end. Enjoy the last high school basketball game.