Target: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
Goal: Don’t slash the state education budget to build a sports stadium.
The governor of Wisconsin wants to cut $300,000 from the state’s public universities in order to build an expensive pro-basketball stadium as part of a new budget plan. This will be the deepest cut to public education in state history, and the proposal has already attracted a wave of criticism from students and educators alike.
Governor Walker has already made multiple cuts to public education, claiming that it promotes “efficiencies.” He commented on a local right-wind radio show that “maybe it’s time for faculty and staff to start thinking about teaching more classes and doing more work.” This shows an incredible amount of ignorance and disrespect, considering the fact that teachers and professors already do far more work than they should have to do for how little they’re paid. If instructors are going to do more work, then they should be paid for that work.
Because of cuts like these, university enrollment in the U.S. is declining, especially for students of color. Rising tuition costs are creating an intolerable burden on students who cannot pay up front for their education and thus must shoulder many thousands of dollars in debt. No sports stadium will ever be worth an increasing lack of reasonable access to education. Demand that Governor Walker remove these cuts from his budget plan, start respecting educators and start putting our youth before profits.
Dear Governor Walker,
You recently announced a budget plan that includes cutting $300,000 from the public university budget in order to build a $500,000 pro-basketball stadium. You claim that budget shortfalls will be made up by the taxes that professional basketball players pay in your state, and yet you also say that universities should simply learn to be more efficient in order to deal with the lack of funds.
It’s clear that you’re entirely ignorant of how universities work and how far they’ve already been stretched by budget cuts. Just like in the past, universities will be forced to make up for these cuts by paying their instructors less and making students pay more in tuition and fees. This will be devastating as both teachers and students are already stretched to the limit. College costs have run so high that enrollment is falling, meaning fewer and fewer young people have access to education. This is terrible for your state and the country as a whole.
Cutting the education budget any further is absolutely unacceptable, and it’s disgusting that you’re doing this to build an unnecessary and expensive sports stadium. I demand that you immediately remove the education cuts from your new budget plan. If you can’t afford to build a stadium without these cuts, then you shouldn’t build one.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Vonbloompasha via Wikimedia Commons