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Independence Day for Two Great Democracies

As we celebrate, with joy and pride, our independence day on July 4, another date is also of significance for us: August 15.  It is India’s independence day. Both US and India obtained their independence from the same country: Britain. India’s freedom in 1947 came much later than America’s.

Both are two large secular democracies, whose constitutions were developed by brilliant, devoted and patriotic leaders. (In the case of India, this group of leaders also included women.) Having the example of a great US constitution was helpful to the Indian leaders, but they still chose the route of a parliamentary democracy in which the prime minister (leader of the party that wins the national elections) is also the government leader, and the president is more a figure of national unity, often chosen without a bitter political campaign.

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Crosswalks: Vehicles vs. Pedestrians


In order to obtain a drivers license in Wisconsin, new drivers must first pass a written test, then a road test.  Over a period of time, many drivers become complacent or just "forget"  some of the traffic laws.  For instance, I have pulled drivers over for passing school busses while the red lights are flashing and the stop arm is activated.  The excuses given are "I thought only cars behind the bus had to stop" or "I saw that the kids had already gotten on the bus". 

With summer months here, we see more pedestrians and bicyclists on the road.  This means drivers need to be more aware of their surroundings.  Remember, it is the responsibility of the driver to stop at a crosswalk to safely allow pedestrians/bicyclists to cross.  This pertains to crosswalks at controlled (signals) or uncontrolled intersections.  In turn, pedestrians/bicyclists have a responsibility to refrain from entering an intersection when any approaching vehicles would not be able to stop safely.

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Ethnic Unrest in Urumqi


I've been back from China for nearly a week now. I'm readjusting to the time difference once again and slowly but surely getting back to my normal routine. Upon seeing my colleague for the first time since returning to Concordia, I was made aware of riots and unrest in China. When I checked out the story online I was shocked to find out the unrest was in the exact city that we were in while in China, only a few miles from Xinjiang University.

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Showing motion in a still photograph

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Local Media Interviews Concordia Staffers

The enthic tension and violence in Urumqi this week continues to get worldwide media coverage. Since our group was in the exact region just days before the unrest began there is interest by local media to tell our story. Specifically, WISN-TV Channel 12 was on the Concordia University Wisconsin campus this week to interview Christine Kao and Kathy Butler, who were both on our recent trip. Patrick Paolantonio is the reporter who will be presenting the piece on Sunday night (7-12) during the 10 p.m. news.

The News Graphic, a local paper in Cedarburg, will also be running a story on our recent trip. This publication ran a story last month just before we departed on Concordia's student exchange program and the effort by the university to reach out to China and other countries. I appreciate the press and their interest in talking about Concordia's program and what we did while we were in China.   

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Bicycle Safety for Motorists

Fox Point, Bayside, bicycle, safety

Recently we have received numerous complaints about bicycles being to far into the roadway. In the past few weeks, Fox Point and Bayside have had bicyclists struck by a motor vehicle. A Wheel and Sprocket employee has also been struck by a motorists.

Wisconsin state law states the following:

  • Bicycles are vehicles. They belong on the road.
  • Cyclists need room to get around potholes, sewer grates and other obstructions.
  • Leave at least three feet when passing bicycles, more room at higher speeds.
  • Change lanes to pass any bicycle traveling in a narrow lane.
  • Train yourself to scan for fast moving (it's hard to tell speed) bicycles and motorcycles in the opposing lane to you when turning left, and scan sidewalks and crosswalks for pedestrians and bicyclists using the sidewalk and crosswalk as a pedestrian. Always scan to your right side sidewalk before you leave a stop light or stop sign. And to the left and right side sidewalks when on a one-way street.

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Free "Eddie Butts" Concert at Whitnall Park

Known for a blend of jazz, pop, and rhythm and blues, the "Eddie Butts' free concert at the Whitnall Park golf clubhouse, 6751 S. 92nd Street, this Friday, July 17th at 6:30 to 8:30pm is going to be one of the top performances of the summer, especially when one considers the beautiful views overlooking Mallard Lake, 150 free State Fair tickets given away with the purchase of a fish fry ( baked option available) and an opening show compliments of the "Seniorgee Dancers" at 6pm.  The fish fry is served from 4-8pm and reservations may be made, though not required, at (414) 425-1810.  Enjoy!

Red White and Brew

I am presently reading Red, White and Brew which is an interesting story of one man's journey to a number of craft breweries around the US.  This leads me to an idea that all readers should send in their best brewery tours that they have been on whether it is a local one, American one or perhaps an international tour.  I will compile a list and post the results on upcoming post.

There are some outstanding local tours and some great ones within a short driving distance.  Some of my personal ones are Lakefront brewery in Madison and the beer garden at Capital Brewery in Madison.

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Exchange Student from China Granted Visa to Study in U.S.


Our recent trip to China is getting a lot of local media attention because of the recent violence in Urumqi. I mentioned in my previous post that Channel 12 came out to Concordia University Wisconsin's campus and interviewed two people who were part of our delegation on the trip. The Channel 12 story ran this past week and focused on our global education efforts over there and how we narrowly missed the ethnic violence that took place in Urumqi. In case you missed the Channel 12 story, click onto the following link:

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Free Air & Water Show July 25-26

Though I've never really seen a live air show, I think I would really like to take the kids and go see this one starting at 10am until about 3:30pm on Saturday or Sunday.  Of course I'll invite the wife, but I honestly don't know if that's her cup of tea or not.  (She gets motion sickness everytime she flies.)  I think just to view the top-notch U.S. Air Force Thunderbird Jet Demonstration Team and U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team would certainly be worth the effort.  I mean the price is right and there's even a "Kids Zone" with inflatable rides, bounce houses, and games.  I understand numberous vendors will be on hand if we get hungry or thirsty.  Bradford Beach will have live music going for the 5th annual Bradford Beach Jam starting at 5pm on Friday, July 24th and running through 5pm, Sunday, July 26th.  Come to think of it, if I take my kids to the Air Show maybe one will want to be a pilot someday or maybe even an astronaut.

Adults Need Tetanus Boosters Every 10 Years

According to the CDC, only 57.2% of adults are protected against tetanus.  It drops to only 44.1% for those over age 65.  This is surprising given the high fatality rate for the disease and the prevalence of the C. tetani bacteria in the environment.

The tetani bacteria produce spores that are very difficult to kill and are found in the soil and intestines and *** of horses, sheep, cattle, dogs, cats, rats, guinea pigs, and chickens.  The likelihood of tetanus is greatest following deep, dirty puncture wounds where there is little bleeding and an absence of oxygen.  But tetanus has also occurred following other injuries such as burns, scratches, slivers, animal bites, body piercing, and tattooing.  In recent years, minor wounds have caused more cases of tetanus than major wounds.  This is probably because more severe wounds are better managed. 

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Calendar Contest Accepting Pet Photos

Smile for the Camera, Scout!
Is your pooch the cutest on the block? Was your kitty destined to model? The Wisconsin and Ozaukee Humane Societies invite you to send your best shot of Scout or Sassy for our 2010 calendar. Local celebrity judges will determine the top thirteen photos, and one lucky companion animal to be chosen for the highly coveted cover photo. Twelve others will be selected for “Pets of the Month.” The first 500 photographs submitted are guaranteed to be included in the calendar!

Entries are now being accepted. There is a $15 non-refundable entry fee for one photo, or $10 each for multiple entries. All proceeds from the calendar benefit the animals at the Wisconsin Humane Society. There are also advertising opportunities available to area businesses! Check out the contest information and submit your photos!

Hughes and Other Familiar Faces will Make for a Fun State Summer Baseball Tournament

To Homestead baseball coach Ernie Millard, Franklin's Jim Hughes is the "silver-haired fox", a talented, genial and driven individual who has had the Sabers' among the state's elite for many years now.

His 700-plus wins are testament to his success, his longeviety and maybe to a sturdy set of combs as Hughes appears still to have every hair on his head that he was born with.

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Continued Struggles to Communicate with Xinjiang University

It's now been one month since our return from China; more than three weeks since the violent outbreak in Urumqi where Concordia University Wisconsin's sister school Xinjiang University is located. Virtually all communication was shut down when the riots broke out and even now there is very limited information getting through. 

Those involved with running the international studies program at Concordia tell me that e-mails and phone calls, especially international calls, are not going through to Xinjiang University. The Chinese government is now forcing international phone numbers to be registered before they will   route them through.

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On June 25, absent even a pretense of objectivity, ABC turned its air waves over to our president, allowing him to make his case for nationalization of one-fifth of the nation’s economy – our health care system. Sadly, the network literally banned GOP commercials in opposition – before, during or after the infomercial, which received rock bottom ratings in its time slot. The man who “loses sleep” over the very deficit he created is proposing to put your children and grandchildren two to four trillion dollars further in debt. And that’s just for starters.  

But wait a second. Health care reform is dead last on the list of things Americans want tackled and polls indicate that virtually everybody seems to be happy with their health care. Reforming health care is even less popular today than when Hillary Clinton tried to saddle us with ill-fated “Hillary Care” in 1993. Back then, a 55% majority said they felt the health care system needed to be “completely rebuilt” compared with 41% today.

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Charismatic Cee Cee is Looking for a Home

You should see Cee Cee! This lovely 3-year-old Treeing Walker Coonhound mix has a tricolor coat and big brown eyes sure to melt your heart. Learn more about Cee Cee and watch her big debut in a video!  Click here:

Nite-Glow Golf - Give it a Try

Two golf courses in the Milwaukee County Parks offer after hours or what is known as "nite-glow golf"  on Friday evenings with tee times starting at 8:30 until 10:30 at night   They are Hansen and Warimont golf courses.  Play with the aid of illuminated tees, flag sticks, holes and glow in the dark golf balls - nine holes for $15.  To make a reservation call Hansen at 453-4454 or Warnimont at 481-1400.

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