Wisconsin Capitol Police continue to harass the Solidarity Singers and have begun sending citations to participants through certified mail. More than 30 people have been given over 80 citations to date.

Singers remain undeterred, with the crack down inspiring them to greater heights of creativity. Check out my photo essay "Fightin' Bob La Follette Must be Rolling in His Grave" in the Wisconsin Citizens Media Cooperative about the Halloween Sing Along for a sense of the spirit and energy of the group. On Monday Jason Huberty unfurled his 5' x 7' poster of Scott Walker as Gepetto pulling the strings of Capitol Police Chief David Erwin as Pinocchio.

Police harassment continues to escalate with the evolution in tactics from handcuffing and physically arresting people for alleged violations of the administrative code to hand-delivering tickets at people's homes and places of work, to the current practice of mailing out citations.

No warnings are given to people about their allegedly unruly behavior as it is happening, and recipients of tickets seem to be selected at random by the police. It is unclear whether or not certified mail constitutes legal service of a document. The practice is likely to be challenged in court.

Court dates for the recipients of the first round of tickets issued in September are scheduled for next month. All cases will be prosecuted by the state Department of Justice rather than the Dane County District Attorney. Defendants have all requested jury trials.

At Monday's event -- the 499th Sing Along over the past 19 months -- Steve Gotcher railed against the crackdown. He was one of the people taken away in handcuffs for displaying text from the Wisconsin constitution in September, and last week received a ticket by certified mail.

Gotcher warned the group of roughly 100 singers in attendance that they shouldn't be surprised to find a ticket waiting for them when they got home. He refuses to be intimidated, however, and urged others to keep coming back and to bring their friends.

Brian Standing, a regular Sing Along participant, has yet to receive a ticket despite repeated announcements to the group and to police of his name and address. On Monday he took to the rotunda and asked, "Do you think it is a good use of taxpayer money to have 12 Capitol Police officers monitoring the Sing Along?" He added, "If you don't, contact the Department of Administration and let them know. We're going to keep showing up here until the teacher to student ratio in our public schools equals the police officer to singer ratio at the Sing Along!"

Rebecca Kemble reports for The Progressive magazine and website. She also participates when she can in the Solidarity Sing Along.

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Trump's politics are not the problem.

The fiery Milwaukee Sheriff is on the shortlist to head the Department of Homeland Security.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.

Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

Public School Shakedown

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