Pentagon surplus program arms school districts with machine guns and grenade launchers

Written by Louis Weisberg,
Staff writer
Thursday, 18 September 2014 11:36

A Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected armored vehicle. -Photo:

Taking advantage of a free military surplus program, school police departments throughout the nation have joined with municipal police departments in stocking up on mine-resistant armored vehicles, grenade launchers and scores of M16 rifles.

Wisconsin voters back clean energy

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Thursday, 18 September 2014 09:57

Wide margins of Wisconsin voters say they want their state to do more to get energy from clean, renewable sources — wind, solar and bioenergy — and to improve energy efficiency.

Clean Wisconsin released the results of the survey earlier this month:

ACLU sues on behalf of married same-sex couples in Wisconsin

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Wednesday, 17 September 2014 10:51

The American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin sued on Sept. 17 on behalf of gays and lesbians who have married in the state but whose marriages are being denied recognition.

In early June, after a federal judge ruled against Wisconsin's constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, more than 500 couples married, with a majority of Wisconsin counties issuing licenses.

U.S. Rep. Moore asks Wisconsin to hold off on voter ID law

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 10:47

U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore is calling on the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board to wait until after the general election to implement the state voter ID law.

The Democratic representative from Milwaukee made the request in a letter to Kevin J. Kennedy, director and general counsel for GAB. She wrote as the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin asked for a full federal appeals court review of the ruling that removed the injunction against the voter ID law, Act 23.

Equality advocates, foes focus on SCOTUS

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Thursday, 18 September 2014 03:23

Dozens of lawsuits are pending in lower courts, but the focus in the campaign for marriage equality is trained on the U.S. Supreme Court. The justices, in a private conference set for Sept. 29, are taking a look at seven marriage-related petitions from five states, including Wisconsin. 

Madison ranks No. 1 in 'best places to live' survey

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Wednesday, 17 September 2014 10:06

Madison comes in at No. 1 on a list of “Top 100 Best Places to Live” in the United States.

The second-annual list from is based on eight factors: health care, education, social and civic capital, demographics, amenities, housing, economics and infrastructure.

Wisconsin officials scramble to implement voter ID law

Written by SCOTT BAUER,
AP writer
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 06:58

Wisconsin election officials were scrambling Monday to deal with a federal appeals court's ruling reinstating the requirement that voters show photo identification when casting ballots.

The law had been on hold, after being in effect only for the low-turnout February 2012 primary, following a series of court orders blocking it. But a three-judge panel of the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago, just hours after hearing oral arguments, said late Friday that the state could proceed with implementing the law while it weighs the merits of the case.

Brewers’ ballpark pup Hank to get literary treatment

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Thursday, 18 September 2014 09:59

Bernie Brewer may be the official mascot of Milwaukee’s team, but this year Brewers fans have given their hearts to a littler mascot: Hank, the stray dog that wandered into spring training and has become a social media success story for the team.

And Milwaukee’s Hank-madness now has a new outlet.

Civil rights group seeks end to ban on gay marriage in Puerto Rico

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Wednesday, 17 September 2014 11:07

Lambda Legal, an LGBT legal defense group, is asking a U.S. District judge for summary judgment to end Puerto Rico's ban on same-sex marriage.

The motion by Lambda was filed earlier this week on behalf of five gay and lesbian couples and a nonprofit LGBT civil rights group on the island.

Comic 'genius' Bechdel among MacArthur fellows

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Wednesday, 17 September 2014 09:17

Cartoonist Alison Bechdel is the recipient of a 2014 MacArthur Fellowship, the foundation — committed "to building a more just, verdant and peaceful world" — announced on Sept. 16.

She is among three members of the LGBT community to receive the prestigious award that is commonly referred to as the "genius grant." Bechdel, 54, lives in Bolton, Vermont, and is the author of the long-running "Dykes to Watch Out For" comic strip, as well as graphic memoirs, including "Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic" and "Are You My Mother: A Comic Drama."

Study: Longer waits to vote in precincts with more minorities

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 06:14

Precincts with more minorities experienced longer waits on Election Day, according to a new study released this week by the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law.

The study found a lack of poll workers and low numbers of voting machines are key contributors to long voting lines.