Wisconsin Family Connection Transcript


2017 | Week of October 16 | #1225 I love October. But that love wanes with the onslaught of grown men in full football pads and uniforms playing a man’s game on a big field while wearing pink wristbands, hats, gloves, shoes and more. Don’t get me wrong. I’m very sure the football players and other athletes who participate in this annual push by the Susan G Komen Foundation are sincere in their support for finding a cure for breast...

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2017 | Week of October 9 | #1224 Seven months after two bills were given to State Senate President Republican Roger Roth, they are now finally formally introduced. Senate rules stipulate that the Senate President is to “promptly” introduce bills given to him from senate authors. Introduction includes getting a bill number and a committee assignment, the first major steps in the legislative process. For at least 3 bills, all of which...

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2017  | Week of October 2 | #1223 Wisconsin Family Council signed onto an important friend-of-the-court brief to the U.S. Supreme Court last week in Kenosha v. Whitaker, a case dealing with the definition of “sex” and bathroom access rights for a transgender-identifying student. The Amicus Brief urges the Justices of the High Court to take up the case previously ruled on by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit. Wisconsin...

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2017 | Week of September 25 | #1222 In the week following the Governor signing the state’s $76 billion two-year budget, it’s fair to ask, as we echo and take some liberties with Samuel Morse, “What has the legislature wrought?” Maybe there is a budget wonk in a small back office in a government office somewhere in Madison who knows everything in this massive bill, but frankly I would doubt it. It’s a daunting task to figure out the...

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2017 | Week of September 18 | #1221 It was September 1787. It had been a long hot summer in the nation’s largest city, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. However, in spite of the soaring temperatures and the associated discomfort, 55 men had been meeting regularly in The City of Brotherly Love since May, occupying what was then known as the Pennsylvania State House, now Independence Hall. They were truly men on a mission and in the process...

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2017 | Week of September 11 | #1220 Some bad ideas just don’t go away—like expanding gambling in Wisconsin. Simply put, state-sanctioned gambling always involves the state receiving money from the gambling. Thus it is always in the state’s interest to have more gambling so that revenues are increased and the state’s coffers are getting richer. This situation means for the state to win, its citizens must lose. Isn’t that quite...

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2017 | Week of September 4 | #1219 We’ve all heard it from our moms: “Just because someone else is doing something doesn’t make it good or right.” And of course, the classic, “If everyone were jumping off a cliff, would you just follow them?” From time to time, legislators need to listen to mom. Forty-four states don’t require any waiting period before a person who is divorced can remarry. Some state legislators are using that as a...

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2017 | Week of August 28 | #1218 On Tuesday, August 1, about 1:30, I made my way to the Dane County Courthouse, took the elevator to the 5th floor and found Judge Richard Niess’s courtroom. I was apprehensive. I was there to observe oral arguments in a case that we had had something to do with. As I sat outside the court room waiting for the current case to be called at 2 p.m., my mind raced back to a decade before when I had sat in...

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2017 | Week of August 21 | #1217 Few people in Wisconsin realize who Dane County, the county in which our state capital, Madison, is located, is named for. Dane County is named for Nathan Dane. A plaque rather inconspicuously placed on the back of the Dane County Courthouse gives a bit of information about this early American. The plaque says Dane was “a compiler of the Ordinance of 1787, which established the Northwest Territory.”...

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2017 | Week of August 14 | #1216 Finally. A state Republican party willing to push back against using casinos as part of balancing a state budget. Gambling in general isn’t an issue you hear either Democrats or Republicans talk much about. It should be talked about a lot, but it’s not. Thankfully, Republicans in Georgia have decided to break the cone of silence. After apparently several years of wrestling with this issue, the Georgia...

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2017 | Week of August 7 | #1215 The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the public-policy arm of the Southern Baptist Convention, recently published and promoted for use in churches, a bulletin insert entitled “Smartphones, Tablets, and Christian Parenting,”[1] authored by Dr. Russell Moore, president of the Commission. Obviously, this is a timely subject, as digital technology continues its encroachment into every aspect of...

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2017 | Week of July 24 | #1213 Much of politics disgusts me. I am no fan at all of the games, the lies, the posturing, the meaningless rhetoric or the way money buys access and action far too often. That said, I also know that elections and politics matter and have very real consequences. When my disgust with state politics reaches a certain point, I jerk myself around to remembering where we could be. This legislative session has...

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2017 | Week of July 17 | #1212 Court decisions matter, especially those from our nation’s highest court. No doubt they shouldn’t matter as much as they do these days.  Our founders designed a government with 3 branches that are meant to check and balance each other, not one where one branch holds the other two hostage. Thomas Jefferson said of this matter, “[T]he opinion which gives to the judges the right to decide what laws are...

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2017  | Week of July 3 | #1210 (Re-airing #1195, Week of March 20, 2017) The Family Prosperity Initiative is a project of the American Conservative Union. It is based on the idea that communities, states and nations are only as strong as the married dad-and-mom families that make up these entities. Two excellent economists use their experience and expertise to analyze data—lots of data—to create an annual index ranking all 50 states...

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2017 | Week of June 26 | #1209 Next Tuesday we celebrate our nation’s 241st recognition of “Deliverance Day,” as John Adams referred to it, or, as it has come to be called, “Independence Day.”  During these days may we ponder the words independence and liberty.   What do they mean?  Independence from what?  Liberty for what?  And what relevance do independence and liberty have for us today? Clearly the founding generation of America...

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2017 | Week of June 19 | #1208 Domestic partnership registries undermine marriage. That’s why smart conservatives oppose them. Some will say that’s narrow-minded. Others will allege that’s archaic. Regardless of the allegations, the reality is domestic partnerships are not marriage.  While mimicking marriage, in important ways they differ from marriage and should not be afforded government recognition or sanction. In 2009,...

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2017 | Week of June 12 | #1207 I find it a bit ironic that we still have a national “Father’s Day” in a culture that is doing everything it can to deny the importance of fatherhood. We see it in the media, in entertainment, in our schools, our public policy and even in our judicial system. Dads have been given a bad rap and as a result, fewer men are choosing to marry the mother of their child or to be in any meaningful way involved...

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2017 | Week of June 5 | #1206 “Daddy is leaving. In order for daddy to be a good daddy, he needs to be happy. Daddy’s not happy right now. You want daddy to be happy, don’t you?” And I’m not really picking on dads because the lopsided conversation you just heard could, sad to say, just as easily been done by a mom. Parents, hear this clearly. Your children are not interested in your happiness. Nor should they be. They are children....

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2017 | Week of May 29 | #1205 The large billboard on a state highway boldly proclaims, “Sex Trafficking: Porn Creates Demand.” That sign isn’t in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, or Detroit. It’s not even in Milwaukee or the Fox Valley. It’s in Beaver Dam, a city of fewer than 17,000 citizens, located in Dodge County, about 40 minutes north of Madison. This billboard is sponsored by a local activist not-for-profit group,...

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2017 | Week of May 15 | #1203 I watched with amazement recently as a darling two-year-old boy took his mom’s smart phone and began using his miniature fingers to maneuver round the keys and buttons without hesitation, eyes glued to the screen, his handsome little face, complete with pursed lips, intent on accomplishing his mission. Shortly he found what he was looking for—a Muppets’ video, which he proceeded to play. In truth, he...

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2017 | Week of May 8 | #1202 Last Thursday, May 4 was a day showing elections really do have consequences. On that day, President Trump issued a proclamation[1] and an Executive Order[2], both of which deal with religious freedom. The proclamation recognizes the National Day of Prayer which was last Thursday. I was immediately struck with the tone of President Trump’s proclamation, especially in comparison to that issued by President...

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2017 | Week of May 1 | #1201 The transgender issue is not going away anytime soon. Those who think somehow that will happen are sadly mistaken and could be tragically affected. Ignoring this issue will only make it worse. But is trying to stop it worth the fight? Aggressive, well-funded and well-organized activists are bent on making this the next civil rights issue in our country. They have local grassroots advocates, along with...

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2017 | Week of April 24 | #1200 It was October 1997. I think it was my first week on the job with Wisconsin Family Council. It was certainly my first assignment having to do with legislation.  The mission? Attend a public hearing and take notes.  I remember walking up to the capitol and finally finding the North Hearing Room. I sat on the  right side of the room facing the front, on an aisle seat towards the back.  I had a legal pad...

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2017 | Week of April 17 | #1199 The March 31 edition of Wisconsin Taxpayers’ Alliance’s publication, “Focus,” had some pretty eye-opening information regarding income tax in Wisconsin.  For instance, did you know that Wisconsin’s income tax is the nation’s oldest?  It’s true. Our income tax was enacted in 1911 and even predated the U.S. income tax.  From the start, Wisconsin income tax has been what is known as a “progressive tax.” ...

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