Thursday, December 16, 2010

Wisconsin, Southeast Region, Need Interventions

Consider that in just the last few days, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has reported that either the State of Wisconsin, or its most populous region - - that would be greater Milwaukee - -  is number-one in:

Segregation. (And there is a lively debate here and elsewhere about the data, other data and related matters.)

Drinking and driving. 

Binge drinking. 

And The New York Times cited Wisconsin leading the nation in drunk driving fatalities.

I'm not saying these rankings are perfect measures, or are related causally, but enough already.

Aren't you getting tired of seeing our state or region leading these lists or garnering that kind of publicity?

And we know that it's been this way for a while.

The Brookings Institution seminal, 2006 report card and action plan for the entire Great Lakes region - - "The Vital Center" - - had listed the Milwaukee-Waukesha region as the nation's most segregated (see p. 23), and noted on p. 24 that such disparities "undermine the economic prosperity of the entire region."

So while so much of this reporting is, sadly, old news - - more here, or here  - -  why have we developed such a tolerance for practices which inhibit our growth, reduce our appeal beyond our borders and obstruct regional cooperation?

Appears to me that the common denominator in these rankings is denial of the reality about who we are as a state and a region, and what our larger responsibilities are to each other, but I don't see the Scott Walker administration at all interested in these sociological or behavioral issues.

Do you?


Anon Jim said...

Despite Wisconsin's supposed reputation as being "progressive", what year in the last 50 years were these not in Wisconsin?

And what exactly did Governors Doyle, Earl, Schreiber, Lucey, Reynolds, and Nelson do to address them?

James Rowen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James Rowen said...

Knowles, Dreyfus, Thompson, McCallum?