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Why Not

I am a husband, father, son, brother, uncle and friend. I believe in sharing my talents and experiences by giving back to the community by giving my time to coaching, church and especially to the disability community. I truly believe that all men and women are created equally.

Memorial Day Ceremony

There was a very good turnout for the Memorial Ceremony on Monday at the Cudahy War Memorial.

The Cudahy Fire Department started the events by raising an American Flag at the end of the extended ladder truck.

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What would Cudahy residents do?

The New Berlin Mayor has been in the news lately in regards to an email he sent that claimed some people in New Berlin are prejudiced and bigoted.  While I do not condone the language used, I can understand his frustration with some of his residents, more on this in a minute.

It looks like some people in New Berlin are taking issue with the New Berlin City Center. So much so, that the Mayor's family is being verbally attacked.  Going after somebody's family is not acceptable and is totally uncalled for. This project was approved by the New Berlin Planning Commisioin 10 years ago. The vote was 3 to 2.  From what I have read, the developer has had the project approved from the beginning.  This is like a permitting issue, if your neighborhood is zoned for sheds, as long as you build a shed to code, you can build a shed even if your neighbors don't like it. If the residents don't like low income people then you can't build apartments in an area zoned to build apartments?  Where were these people at from the beginning of the process? Did they not have public notice of the public hearing? Did they move to the community after the approval?

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Internet Safety for Children

This week, my 2 older kids came home from school with a survey in regards to computer usage in the home.  Ironically enough, this week I received the same email as Randy Hollenbeck from Sgt Chris Blunt in regards to internet safety for kids.

Since I do not just answer my kids homework questions, I have them looking up things on the computer. Much different then me looking things up in the dictionary or encyclopedia in my school days. In some cases, there have been minor surprises, nothing that has scared them for life.

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Coaching Success

The passing of John Wooden this weekend brought out the many stories of what made him a successful basketball coach.  Sure he had all of his championships at UCLA, but it is the stories that were told by past players that really struck me.

Growing up in Indiana, you couldn't help but hear about John Wooden.  The only thing that hurts is that he attended Purdue, I am an Indiana University graduate.

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Cars and Pedestrians

Since my summer vacation started, I have been entrusted by my wife to pick Tyler up  from school.  Since most of the days have been nice, I have chosen to walk to 2 or 3 blocks, crossing many streets as I walk on Kirkwood.

To my amazement, about 75% of the drivers do not give the pedestrians the right of way when they come to a stop, if they come to a complete stop at all.  I know that when I was younger, I was not required to take drivers education.  But I was taught by my parents that when you come to an intersection that requires you to stop, then pedestrians have the right of way.  I was also taught that a driver should be alert at all interections at all times regardless of stop signs or not.

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Changing My Ways

Some 25 years ago, I was required to take a class that taught ther art of resume writing, interviewing and follow up.  I am learning quickly that these methods are pretty dated.  Not having to really look for a job in the last 25 years or so, I always knew somebody that allowed me to progress through my career in transportation, I have a lot to learn.

All of the jobs that I have applied for have been on-line.  The only real contact you get is a responding e-mail thanking you for your application/resume.  The e-mail stats to please not contact us, if we feel that your application meets their needs, they will contact you.  So far, I have heard back from 1.

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Music and Movies

I have always been the kind of person who enjoys listening to music whenever possible.  I have no personal  musical talent, in fact my family takes away the hymnal away from me at church, but I enjoy it none the less. Today it is the Stones, Springsteen, Steely Dan, Santana ands Stevie Ray.  Tommorow it may be Davis Coltrane, Rollins and Marsalis.

I think the thing that stikes me most these days is how often the kids will come to me and ask when we got  a particular soundtrack from a kids movie.  I have to tell them that for the most that I have the original CD's, in some cases I have the original albums.  I still have my Beatles White Album and Dark Side of the Moon with the posters in them.

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What the Flag Means to Me

The US Flag represents the freedoms that our Founding Fathers fought so hard for. In many ways, I think many people just take for granted the freedoms that we have in the United States.

The 13 stripes reminds me of the bavery of the original colonies. What they must have gone through over 200 years to establish this country.  The 50 Stars, representing the States.  You watch many shows that show how territories fought for and in some cases against statehood.

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Real Accountability?

Listening to President Obama last night, the main message I took out of his speech last night was that he seemed to really want to hold BP accountable for the Gulf spill.  It was not so much BP that he wants to be held accountable, but he also wants to hold the Government Oversight Agency, Minerals Management Service (MMS) accountable for thier lack of oversight.

The Government has many agencies set up to over see just about everything in this country. The FDA oversees food and drugs, the FAA oversees aviation, the FTC oversees consumer protection.  I could go on, but I think you get the idea.  While we have all of these agencies, I am sure that there are not enough people to truely monitor everything, far too much seems to slip through the cracks.  In a lot of cases, oversight is caused by those responsible are caught to be accepting favors from special interest groups. 

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Making a Difference in Their Lives Will Make a Difference in Yours

This is an earlier story posted by my wife Angie

The Down Syndrome Association of Wisconsin, Inc. (DSAW) and the Autism Society of Southeastern Wisconsin (ASSEW) are hosting the 3rd annual Lose The Training Wheels bike camp designed to teach individuals with special needs how to ride a two wheel bike. It is being held Monday, June 21st – 25th, 2010 at Nicolet High School, 6701 North Jean Nicolet Road, Milwaukee, WI 53217.

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Self Advocates

Late last week, I was talking to someone in regards to my dream of the disability complex.  Somewhere in the discussion, an idea came up of who would be best to pitch the idea.  Without hesitation, I said it had to be the people who would benefit the most from the complex, that being the individuals with a disability.  In my short time on the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities, I have been amazed by the experiences shared by the consumers (individuals with a developmental disability).  They know how issues can benefit and affect them.

The person I was talking with was hesitant at first, but as I went on in my description of the talks I have heard in Madison, the person thought it was a great idea.  All to often, people do not give consumers enough credit for what they are capable of doing. In some cases, the consumer has a lot of things done for them, yet they are capable of doing the task. Consumers learn how to get something done if they want it bad enough, just like anybody else.

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Carol Wantuch Award Winner

In case you missed it, Carol Wantuch, the Head of the Cudahy Health Department was recently awarded the 2010 The Wisconsin Public Health Association Lifetime Distinguished Service to Public Health Award.

Most recognize Carol as the person who lead the City Evacuation in July 2009.  What most impressed me about Carol was that at a Neighborhood Watch Meeting, Carol described the process of the evacuation.  After her talk, she mentioned that they continually evaluate the process.  Earlier this year, I asked her if the plan included people with disabilities, I was pleased to hear that it did. Carol was, and I am sure still is,  working with a Milwaukee/Waukesha County Consortium on Emergency Preparedness. My time on the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities has shown how much more we need to do for people in times of evacuation.  Carol asked if I would participate in a survey with a research company, having just met Carol once, and it was a simple hello, I felt honored to be ask to participate.  To think in a short few minutes and emails, I might have something to offer.

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Summer Vacation Update

Summer vacations just aren't what they used to be.  I remember them as getting up early, eating a sugary cerea,l then heading to the local park.  If there were not enough guys to get a baseball game going, there was the rec department holding their camp.  My personal favorite was box hockey.  I don't know that this game would be allowed today.  4 kids with sticks trying to hit a ball through a hole in the box.  I think I went home with more bruises on my hands then I scored goals. I also probably gave more hand bruises then scored goals.

Thankfully, my kids start summer school today, they are procrastinaters. They liked to wait until after lunch to start looking for something to do.   I talked to another parent last night and he had the same feeling, it was time for the kids to have something productive to do in the morning.  I am sure my kids are happy for one thing, a temporary end to morning chores. They were not happy about haviving to get woken up early this morning.

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The Declaration of Independence

As we approach the long July 4th Holiday weekend.  I try to remember to reread the Declartaion of Independence.  It is always a good reminder of why we Love living in America.  It is a day when it seems all Americans feel the same way about our Country.  I often wish both political parties and many more Americans would take the time to reread this important document.  I have included it hear for your enjoyment.

IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

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