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State Street Riot

Please limit discussion in this area to local and state politics.

How to take the trouble out of State Street Holloween?

Poll ended at Wed Nov 12, 2003 12:04 pm

Close the Street at 2:30
1
4%
Curfew at midnight
5
21%
Let bars stay open all night or until 4 or 5
18
75%
 
Total votes : 24

Re: Who's State Street Is It? My State Street

Postby altuniverse » Tue Nov 04, 2003 10:13 am

Dulouz wrote:
altuniverse wrote:.

The city is hardly wrecked....I really get sick of this moralizing crap. :roll:


Ah yes let Madison become the riot town. Insurance will pay for it. Nobody was killed, so who cares. Let people bust windows. The insurance will pay for it! And who is paying for the insurance? Small business owners already struggling to stay on State Street. I already know people who don't shop on State Street because of the concept it isn't safe, so why don't we just make even more unsafe and put up a sign: "Hey if you don't kill anybody go ahead and riot, we'll just clean it up with the tax payers money in the morning."

This type of attitude is why things will only get worse before one of these parties turns into major issue which will harm the image of Madison forever. There was at least one person arrested for assult in this riot (Russell Kuhns). Let's see if we can have a death next year and then maybe you'll care. But some of us of care now. If this continues State Street won't be State Street because small stores won't be able to or won't wish to deal with the cost of Holloween has their business.

If you stick you head into the ground any more you'll find the iron core.
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Postby jjoyce » Tue Nov 04, 2003 10:43 am

Has anyone mentioned that this is yet another obstacle for local businesses to overcome if they want to operate on State St.? Windows of Einstein's break, corporate takes care of it. Windows of Paul's Books break, out comes the cigar box.

Someone quoted Verveer as saying insurance premiums are the "cost of doing business" if your shop is on State St. Really? Did he really say that? (Mike, did you really say that?) Because it's clearly a much larger cost, relatively, to places like Husnu's and Tomboy Girl and saying something like that sounds irresponsible and at odds with everything that comes out of his mouth about retaining the character of State St. Also, these quick remarks about all the money that Halloween brought to State St. are a joke. Do you think Husnu's ended up profiting after replacing all their windows and cleaning up... and having their insurance premiums raised? Are the State St. merchants going to chip in and help? A big bike rally brings a lot of money into Sturgis, SD every year, should we have one? What about a running of the bulls?

I put this all on the city and the cops. Yes, a bunch of assholes gathered on the street and did the actual damage and they should be punished. But it happened last year and everyone predicted it would again this year. Chief Williams remarks about "doing" their plan and carrying it out is arrogant and irresponsible on its face. Hey, Chief. If your plan was really to stand around and wait until glass broke, then go get your riot gear on and "cut the pie," then YOUR PLAN SUCKED!

It amazes me that the cops actually thought they were out of the woods after Friday. Did anyone read up on this subject or remember Mifflin St. from 1996? The energy of the weekend (sexual and otherwise) was bound to crescendo on Saturday night, when there was nothing left to do with it. New Orleans understands this, which is why at the end of Mardi Gras, they clear Bourbon St. Absolutely clear it out, sending the street sweepers and horse cops down the street. Would it be so horrible to do that on State? Hell, move in the snow plows. Yes, you'll still have some problems, but there's almost no way that a crowd of 5,000 frenzied Gen Y drunks can gather without breaking shit. Thankfully it was raining, otherwise stuff would have gotten burned.

The comment that someone made about Woodstock was funny, but remember the last Woodstock? You know, the one where women were raped while Limp Bizkit implored them to break stuff? Maybe the reason the cops were caught flat footed was that they're still not used to this new generation being so violent at their parties. I mean, we never pulled shit like this when I was in school. But look around a little. Minnesota and Mankato have both had riots like this in the past couple years. This kind of behavior is the rule, not the exception.
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An Earlier Street Party

Postby Jattpw » Tue Nov 04, 2003 11:54 am

What about making the party take place earlier. The majority of block parties in Madison end at 8 or 9. What if the City adds family entertainment, costume contest, haunted house, and other activities that actually bring people down town so store owners can make some money. Then close the street later at night.
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Postby pulseCzar » Tue Nov 04, 2003 12:16 pm

jjoyce wrote:I put this all on the city and the cops. Yes, a bunch of assholes gathered on the street and did the actual damage and they should be punished. But it happened last year and everyone predicted it would again this year. Chief Williams remarks about "doing" their plan and carrying it out is arrogant and irresponsible on its face. Hey, Chief. If your plan was really to stand around and wait until glass broke, then go get your riot gear on and "cut the pie," then YOUR PLAN SUCKED!

It amazes me that the cops actually thought they were out of the woods after Friday. Did anyone read up on this subject or remember Mifflin St. from 1996? The energy of the weekend (sexual and otherwise) was bound to crescendo on Saturday night, when there was nothing left to do with it. New Orleans understands this, which is why at the end of Mardi Gras, they clear Bourbon St. Absolutely clear it out, sending the street sweepers and horse cops down the street. Would it be so horrible to do that on State? Hell, move in the snow plows. Yes, you'll still have some problems, but there's almost no way that a crowd of 5,000 frenzied Gen Y drunks can gather without breaking shit. Thankfully it was raining, otherwise stuff would have gotten burned.


Yes, "the plan" sucked big time. The police chief and those involved in planning should step up and take some responsibility instead of blaming this or that. There is plenty of blame to go around, step right up fellas, take a huge helping of it! And like I said in another post, would it kill anyone from Madison to find out how the pros do things in New Orleans? The point about clearing the streets is excellent.

I'm VERY curious to know what "the plan" was for police staffing levels on State Street for Friday vs. Saturday, earlier hours vs. later hours. Were the police breathing a sigh of relief at 1:00 when the concert ended and thus decided to send some people home or elsewhere in the city?

Something that kills me as well is how Larry Kamholtz (sp?) was on WSUM whining about how Halloween is such a huge drain on the police department's budegt. However he also stated that they don't specifically budget for Halloween. Excuse me?!?! I really hope I misunderstood what he said. Seems to me if they can't handle the crowds via their staffing levels then they need to get some help over that weekend which should be budgeted for. Screw this whole warm & fuzzy idea of using revenue from parking ramp ads to promote alternative transportation methods, use the money to pay to keep State Street safe and unharmed during these big events. I think that is much more pressing.

And finally to Mayor Dave on his statement that maybe Madison should change Halloween on State Street to be more family oriented...are you for fucking real?
Last edited by pulseCzar on Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Madison militia

Postby charliedon'tsurf » Tue Nov 04, 2003 12:55 pm

I like to party more than the next person, but these out of town jackasses should be stopped. How about a couple thousand residents of this city line State St. holding baseball bats and wait for some out-of-state frat boy to get out of line. Either that or barricade the city and hang a couple corpses of Indiana and Minnesota students out by the 90-94 interchange to set an example. :twisted:
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Things to do to avoid more violence

Postby True Blue » Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:25 pm

1. Don't allow a head-banging concert to go until the wee hours. Cut it off at midnight.
2. Keep bars open, but don't allow booze to be sold after 2 AM.
3. Have ample cameras on hand to take pictures of the assholes for prosecution.
4. Prosecute them, fine them and make them perform community service here in Dane County, regardless of whether they come from MN or Illinois. Put their names and pictures in the papers and on the web. If they're from out of state, send press releases to their home papers, with mug shots for printing.
5. Play John Denver very loud at 2 AM. It will make their ears bleed and send them running.
6. Fire the police chief. Now. He went AWOL without advance notice and abandoned the city during a time of need. He shouwed terrible leadership. Don't let the door hit you on the way out, Chief!
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Re: Madison militia

Postby eriedasch » Tue Nov 04, 2003 2:43 pm

charliedon'tsurf wrote:I like to party more than the next person, but these out of town jackasses should be stopped. How about a couple thousand residents of this city line State St. holding baseball bats and wait for some out-of-state frat boy to get out of line. Either that or barricade the city and hang a couple corpses of Indiana and Minnesota students out by the 90-94 interchange to set an example. :twisted:

Call me crazy, but you can either try and put the blame on "those out-of-towners" like charlie is doing above or you can address the real issues by looking at legitimate ways to prevent it in the future.

I also like to party more than the next person but if riots and vandalism are the final results the cops need to have more of a presence. If putting a cop on every block is not going to do it (although it does seem like most of them were sent home by the time the bars let out) put 2 cops in full riot gear with clubs, pepper spray, or shotguns if that's what it takes. Do what they did after the Mifflin '96 riots - basically shut 'er down and have enough cops to prevent a riot.

The best thing I've heard yet is to let the bars stay open longer - if not all nite. The reason they don't have repeated problems at Marti Gras, Austin TX, Memphis TN, etc. with huge massive outdoor parties is because they don't try and shut it down at 2:30a with no other alternative but to go home. I'm wondering when our uptight city and uptight mayor are going to realize this before it happens again. "Turn it into a children/family event" - you've got to be kidding me? Maybe during the day, but that will do nothing to curb riots going on after all the drunks get kicked out of the bars at 2a. I could almost guarantee if bars closed early on new years eve there would be riots then too.

This is 2003 and our gov't & media continues to breed fear, hatred, and greed. Why should we expect the citizens to behave differently?
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Re: Madison militia

Postby lunatic fringe » Tue Nov 04, 2003 3:20 pm

eriedasch wrote:I also like to party more than the next person but if riots and vandalism are the final results the cops need to have more of a presence. If putting a cop on every block is not going to do it (although it does seem like most of them were sent home by the time the bars let out) put 2 cops in full riot gear with clubs, pepper spray, or shotguns if that's what it takes. Do what they did after the Mifflin '96 riots - basically shut 'er down and have enough cops to prevent a riot.


I'm an oldtimer by foron standards and back when I was a kid, the cops stayed clear away from Mifflin and it was a beautiful scene. There was a baracade at one end of Mifflin...at one side a half dozen cops stood and on the other a couple of hippy sold pot brownies. There were no riots, the biggest problem was urinating in public. Same with Halloween. The cops were mellow and the people were too. And with Harvestfest. It was so different then.

I disagree with everyone who thinks we need an increase presence of the Madison Municpal Cops. They are the poorest excuse for law enforcement I've ever run across. I am a law abider, but honestly, they only piss me off. I agree with the person who thinks bringing in a loosely formed Madison Militia, hey I'd volunteer, if we can dress in Timber uni's as costumes.

I left town for 7 years and when I came back I was dumbfounded. The peace loving party town I came to embrace was replaced with a lot of fancy haircuts, athleticwear, and heightened security. The Madison Police department turned into the gestapo. Was is Soglin? Bauman? I am dismayed. What the hell went wrong between 1989-1996?
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Re: Madison militia

Postby Dulouz » Tue Nov 04, 2003 3:27 pm

lunatic fringe wrote:I left town for 7 years and when I came back I was dumbfounded. The peace loving party town I came to embrace was replaced with a lot of fancy haircuts, athleticwear, and heightened security. The Madison Police department turned into the gestapo. Was is Soglin? Bauman? I am dismayed. What the hell went wrong between 1989-1996?


Cooper retired and Soglin hired a big city chief wannabe who was too incompetant to get hired in a bigger market (he's tried a few times though). Gone was Cooper and the mellow, in was the big man theory (think LA) of police work.

If the right wing pundits are correct, this should cease to be a problem since we will have concealed carry next year. No one will start a riot then (at least not the unarmed out-of-towners). :wink:
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Postby eratik » Tue Nov 04, 2003 4:12 pm

jjoyce wrote:I put this all on the city and the cops. Yes, a bunch of assholes gathered on the street and did the actual damage and they should be punished. But it happened last year and everyone predicted it would again this year. Chief Williams remarks about "doing" their plan and carrying it out is arrogant and irresponsible on its face. Hey, Chief. If your plan was really to stand around and wait until glass broke, then go get your riot gear on and "cut the pie," then YOUR PLAN SUCKED!

It amazes me that the cops actually thought they were out of the woods after Friday. Did anyone read up on this subject or remember Mifflin St. from 1996? The energy of the weekend (sexual and otherwise) was bound to crescendo on Saturday night, when there was nothing left to do with it. New Orleans understands this, which is why at the end of Mardi Gras, they clear Bourbon St. Absolutely clear it out, sending the street sweepers and horse cops down the street. Would it be so horrible to do that on State? Hell, move in the snow plows. Yes, you'll still have some problems, but there's almost no way that a crowd of 5,000 frenzied Gen Y drunks can gather without breaking shit. Thankfully it was raining, otherwise stuff would have gotten burned.


It's awfully easy to make an argument when you assume all the difficult to ascertain facts.
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Re: Madison militia

Postby snoqueen » Tue Nov 04, 2003 8:06 pm

lunatic fringe wrote:I'm an oldtimer by foron standards and back when I was a kid, the cops stayed clear away from Mifflin and it was a beautiful scene. There was a baracade at one end of Mifflin...at one side a half dozen cops stood and on the other a couple of hippy sold pot brownies. There were no riots, the biggest problem was urinating in public. Same with Halloween. The cops were mellow and the people were too.



I'm another oldtimer who was at the early, early Mifflin parties and Halloweens. I think partiers have changed. Sure, a few hippies used to get mad and rock police cars and and set fires, but those were always a minority and it took significant provoking (which the cops back then were more than happy to provide) to push things to that stage. The windowbreaking rampages on State Street in the late 60s and 1970 were related to anti-war protests, not partying. (This is not an attempt to excuse violence and destruction, just a description of what was going on.)

Now, if you watch State Street almost any weekend, you see a general level of meanness used as a form of entertainment or "style" that is way beyond the worst nights of the 70s. I don't know if it's different drugs, the political climate, or what, but the whole baseline has moved. I'm sorry, but I don't believe Woodstock (or Mifflin 1975) is lurking under the surface, waiting to happen again if the cops just pull back.

One afternoon last summer I got in a conversation with the guy who drives the horse and carriage downtown for the hotel tourists. He remarked to me in the eight or so years he'd been doing State Street, the crowds had become noticeably nastier, more randomly hostile and destructive. I figure he's in as good a position to know as anybody else.

I don't like to think people in general are bad, and I emphatically don't think young people are bad. The whole social atmosphere is meaner, in a way. It's hard to describe. I feel like it's related some way to road rage and concealed carry and a lot of other free-floating hostility in the air at this time. Hope someone else can do a better job than I am at putting this into words.

- - -

Playing John Denver at the crowd might help. A little "Rocky Mountain High" anyone?

:P <--- attempt to select emoticon for barfing
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Postby Black Hawk » Tue Nov 04, 2003 11:45 pm

My, some people suffer from an irony deficiency - or is it just the contaminated groundwater and lead pipes in the Isthmus?

Having been to several World Cup matches myself and encountered hooligans firsthand, I would be the last futebol fan to invoke that as a model of "crowd control." Needless to say, we've carried off bodies of fellow citizens here, too - whether they're victims of police brutality, corporate negligence, or road rage hit and run - as just happened to a unlucky pedestrian in my neighborhood the other week.

Since the whole MBA/WTO world is into finding a nifty "free market" solution to social problems, why not encourage some enterprising insurance company to offer special State St. Halloween Riot coverage? Better yet, we could use the BID to subcontract such a vital service, along with the non-unionized rent-a-cops, the festive holiday lighting, and the glossy promotional brochures. We could also install permanent public surveillance cameras on every corner of State St. - like they already have at UW's Camp Randall - and scan the revelers/passerbys/loiterers for felons/terrorists/drunks using - once again, the efficient and infallible services of privatized facial recognition technology. Of course, the more riots Madison can drum up all the more need for SWAT outfits like the Special Events Team (SET) which was overly anxious to prove its worth all weekend long. With luck, Madison is now set to get another great wallow in the immense trough of Homeland Security funding.

Such silver linings to be found in sarcasm...
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Postby anonymous72 » Wed Nov 05, 2003 3:15 am

Does anyone think these riots would happen if people were stoned on weed instead of drunk on booze? Doobies for all!
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Postby Wesmon » Wed Nov 05, 2003 4:00 am

Interesting, the idea of a later bar time. Of course it would have to be pursued at the state level. IMO, an earlier (2:00 am) bar time contributes to binge drinking as people have to get their drinks in before the bar closes. In fact this is an even bigger problem in Britain where the bars close at midnight.

And in general, countries and states with bars that stay open till 4am or even all night seem to have less binge drinking and the problems that come with it. People go out to party for the night instead of going out to get intoxicated as quickly as they can.
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Postby Jattpw » Wed Nov 05, 2003 11:02 am

The problem with bars not having a closing time is that it takes away the deadline for hooking up. People won't know whether to lower the standards of whom they will go home with at 1 a.m.? 2? 3?

Some of do our best work under the pressure of a deadline.


:lol:
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