I just wanted to post something positive here about the police force I've worked with several times this year- the Capitol Police in Madison. Since the protests against Governor Walker started in February there have been a number of rallies and I've volunteered to be a marshall a half dozen times. The marshalls are all citizen volunteers, mostly from the unions or the Democratic party. They train us to be out among the crowd during the whole day, as a layer between the people and the police and it has worked very well. We wear yellow or orange vests- people ask us for information. We can tell people to stop doing something, but we don't have any authority. We don't get involved in anything that looks heated, but I've actually never seen anything get heated. If we see a situation, we go and get a police officer. They are free to stand back.
Usually what you see at the protests is a bit of shouting and sometimes an occasional shove. Sometimes people have a nasty sign. But all in all, it works. It saves the police department a ton of money, and it saves them from making arrests. It makes people who don't like police more comfortable because there are a lot less of them- or shall I say, they are a lot less visible. They are there, but we are easier to find.
I know that some things have happened inside the Capitol that were more disturbing. But the days that we've had huge rallies with thousands of people - and some from both sides - have been very peaceful. I think its because the police trust civilians enough to rely on us to help them out.
2. i can`t remember if the madison police were dickheads during the 60`s
Edited on Sun Nov-20-11 02:06 PM by madrchsod
i know the students had protests but i don`t remember anything as bad as other cities during those times. i think the madison police force has more pressing issues than trying to crack done on the friendly marchers in madison.
4. I think they were probaly not so good in the sixties as now
although I wasn't here back then.
The police and fire departments are sympathetic to our anti-walker cause but they are also smart and have had the experience of learning to deal with downtown "halloween" and other things unique to Madison. Its a big ten football city, a liberal protest city, a huge presidential visit city (Kerry rally was 100,000+), etc. We do it all, and for a city of 200,000 its a lot for a police force to handle.
There was one incident that I saw yesterday. A pro-Walker lady kinda shoved an anti-Walker lady with the sign she was carrying. She did this within about 25ft of where 2 capitol police were standing, so the anti-Walker lady told them about it and they ran after the pro-Walker lady. From what I could tell they didn't lay a hand on her, all they did was talk to her. But the conversation lasted for a good 15 minutes. I'll bet she didn't do that again.
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