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Author: Lee Matz

Inconvenient Images: How pictures teach us to see the world for what it is

As the visuals of TV news broadcasts assault our minds with horrific images, turning away from them is both a reflex and a defense. As heart breaking as is to see photos of our country throwing tear gas at women and children or carnage from the latest mass shooting, it is a distant situation for most Americans. Which is to say, privilege provides a safe harbor from the terrible actions that social complicity allows and shared blindness foments. The passion for a career in photojournalism developed later in my life, but had its beginnings in my earliest memories. As...

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Governor-elect Tony Evers at City Hall: A strong Wisconsin means having a strong Milwaukee

Governor-elect Tony Evers made his first trip to Milwaukee City Hall since winning his election to meet with Mayor Tom Barrett and address the Common Council on December 4, while the Wisconsin Legislature’s extraordinary session in Madison took aim at altering the state’s democratic process. Sitting with Governor-elect Evers in his office, Mayor Barrett said that the meeting was the first time in years that a governor or governor-elect had taken the time to make a visit. He was also thankful that the Governor-elect saw Milwaukee was a part of Wisconsin, not a rival entity. “I think it is...

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Fiserv Forum pays homage to Milwaukee’s German heritage with inaugural Christkindlmarket

Milwaukee’s first Christkindlmarket kicked off on November 17, bringing an authentic German holiday festival to downtown that will run until December 31. Popular in cities like Chicago, Baltimore, and Denver, Milwaukee finally has its turn to showcase its German roots for Christmas festivities. The seasonal market was located on the edge of Old World Third Street, the city’s epicenter of living German heritage. Announced several months ago by Peter Feigin, President of the Milwaukee Bucks, Christkindlmarket Milwaukee transformed the Fiserv Forum’s plaza into a picturesque holiday village. Featured are around 30 vendors from Germany, Europe, and around the world...

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Santa comes to downtown by streetcar for 2018 Holiday Lights Festival

Milwaukee officially ushered in the 2018 holiday season with the city’s Christmas tree celebration and Holiday Lights Festival on November 15, events that took place on both sides of the Milwaukee River that once divided the early settlements of Juneautown and Kilbourntown in the 1840s. Staff from the Department of Public Works decorated the 105th annual Christmas tree, positioned across from City Hall by the Frank P. Zeidler Municipal Building, with more than 5,000 lights and 150 ornaments. Milwaukee’s Christmas tree lighting is the second oldest celebration of its kind in the United States, behind New York City. This...

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Rainbow crosswalks installed downtown to honor Milwaukee’s LGBT community

The city’s first rainbow crosswalks were installed at the intersection of Jefferson and Wells streets at the southwest corner of Cathedral Square on November 3, recognizing the LGBT heritage of the location. Milwaukee joins dozens of communities worldwide who have established permanent and visible tribute to their local LGBT communities. Milwaukee Pride, in partnership with the East Town Association and with the support of 13 LGBT organizations, began negotiations with the City of Milwaukee in August 2018. “We are a community that accepts people, and embraces people that we want to be together,” said Mayor Tom Barrett. “I think...

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First weekend of Streetcar operations did not end Western Civilization

The long-awaited streetcar launched its initial 2.1-mile loop along the streets of Milwaukee on November 2. Thanks to the generous sponsorship of Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, rides on The Hop will be free for its inaugural year. On November 3, during the installation of two rainbow crosswalks by Cathedral Square Park at the intersection of Jefferson and Wells Streets – to pay homage to the city’s LGBT heritage – Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett began his speech with a mention of The Hop, Milwaukee’s new Streetcar system. “We have now had one full day of Streetcar service in Milwaukee,” said...

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