Skip to main content

District 13

Alder Tag Evers

Image of Alder Tag Evers

Alder Tag Evers

Contact Information

Home Address:

2329 Keyes Av

Council Office

Common Council Office:
210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd
Room 417
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: (608) 266-4071
Fax: (608) 267-8669
WI Relay Service

Alder Evers’ Blog

2020 Reflections and Hope for the New Year

December 31, 2020 12:53 PM

Hi Everyone,

I recently signed up for Heather Cox Richardson's Substack newsletter, Letters from an American. Richardson is a history professor at Boston College, and her nightly musings on current events have become quite popular.

Yesterday's post began as follows:

And so, we are at the end of a year that has brought a presidential impeachment trial, a deadly pandemic that has killed more than 338,000 of us, a huge social movement for racial justice, a presidential election, and a president who has refused to accept the results of that election and is now trying to split his own political party.

It's been quite a year.

Quite a year, indeed.

I've noticed this current among my friends heading into the new year, a desire for a boring, uneventful 2021. I feel it myself, a desire to get back to some sense of normalcy, to not be battered by wave after wave of awful, depressing news. So many lives lost; by now nearly all of us know someone who lost their battle to Covid. Loss of jobs, hours cut, businesses closing or barely hanging on. Corruption and malfeasance at the highest levels of government, and tens of millions duped into believing an election was stolen.

Wouldn't it be nice to just get back to normal?

But in reading Richardson's newsletter, it's clear there's no going back. The events of the last four years, Richardson writes, can best be understood as the last gasps of the Reagan Revolution and the austerity measures of the last forty years. These last four decades we've witnessed the unparalleled rise of global corporate power and the concomitant and dramatic increase in income inequality. To wit, CEO compensation has increased 940 percent in real terms since 1978, while typical worker compensation has only increased 12 percent. The myth of the self-regulating free market and the mythologizing of the rugged individualist who pulls himself up by his bootstraps ignores the fact America's wealth was built on stolen land, stolen labor and, in effect, stolen boots.

As Nicholas Kristoff opines:

One of America's mistakes over the last half century was to go too far down the track of extolling "personal responsibility" and haranguing people to lift themselves up by their bootstraps. When an infant in three counties in the United States has a shorter life expectancy than an infant in Bangladesh, that's not because the American newborn is making "bad choices"; it's because we as a country are. So by all means, let's talk about "personal responsibility" -- it's real -- but also about our collective responsibility to help America's children and give them a fighting chance to succeed.

We dare not go back to normal, whatever that means. Besides, all the roiling events Richardson referenced in her opening paragraph don't begin to touch on climate change -- the deadly wildfires, the crazy number of hurricanes, the unabated rise in global temperature we cannot afford to ignore.

In some real sense, 2020 may simply be a prelude to the ongoing challenges we'll be facing every year of this next decade, as our collective chickens keep coming home to roost.

So, what are we left with?  To me, the answer comes down to hope. As activist and author Rebecca Solnit states, "Hope is the embrace of the unknown and the unknowable, an alternative to the certainty of both optimists and pessimists." In that sense, hope is akin to faith and the antidote to despair. Father Greg Boyle, the founder of Homeboy Industries, writes of "the lethal absence of hope," the undertow of poverty, trauma and addiction that leads to suicide, drug overdoses and gun violence.

The vaccine is coming, and that brings hope, hope that we can gather together once again, give each other hugs, eat out in restaurants, and, yes, go see live music!

Hope is the lifeline we hold out to each other, and the abiding spirit of those committed to transformational change. It's the basis for human kindness, the impetus to assist those in need, whether it be sewing masks or donating to food banks or shoveling our neighbor's sidewalk when they're unable.  

And hope is the answer to the calling to commit ourselves to real personal responsibility, not the type that looks out for number one, but rather to our common welfare, our collective good -- to the hard and necessary work of dismantling white supremacy, addressing climate change, and continually opening ourselves to the healing power of love and service.

As we enter the new year, may we all be filled with hope and the courage to face our challenges together.

Take care and stay safe,


Tags: Hope

Email to a friend Email to a friend

Subscribe to Email List

Subscribe to the District 13 – Alder Evers email list:

By participating on this list the Wisconsin Public Records Laws may subject your email address to disclosure to third parties. By selecting "Yes" you are requesting that we treat your email address that you have provided to this list as confidential and you are also stating that you would not participate in this service if the City is obligated to release your email address to such third party requesters.






1109 S. Park  1224 S. Park  2020 Census  2020 Referenda  5G Technology  Accessory Dwelling Units  Affordable Housing  Affordable Housing Fund  Affordable Housing; Police Chief  Ahmaud Arbery  Alder Pay  Aldo Leopold  Alexis London  Allen Arntsen  Alleys  American Plan Rescue Act  Anisa Scott  Annie Stewart Fountain  Anthony Cooper  Anti-Racism  Arboretum  ARPA  Aurielle Smith  Badger Football  Bay Creek  Bayview  Bayview Foundation  Bicycling  Big Step  Bikeways  Biking  Black Lives Matter  Board of Parks Commissioners  Board of Public Works  Body Worn Cameras  Brandi Grayson  Brittingham Park  BRT  Brush Collection  Budget  Buildings Energy Savings Program  Bus Rapid Transit  C.A.R.E.S.  CARES Program  CDA  Cedar Street  City Budget  Civilian Oversight Board  Clean Lakes Alliance  Clean Streets/Clean Lakes  Clean Up  Clear Sidewalks  Climate Change  Common Council  Community Control  Community Input  Complete Green Streets  Complete Green Streets  Composting  Computers  Corporate Power  COVID-19  Crime  Curbside collection  D13 Mask Brigade  D13 Neighborhood Alliance  D14 Alder Sheri Carter  D5 Alder Regina Vidaver  Dairy Drive  Damond Boatwright  Dark Sky Ordinance  Defund The Police  Development  Development  Digital Inclusion  Diversity  Dog Parks  Dogs in Parks  Dudgeon Monroe  Dudgeon-Monroe Neighborhood Assn  Earth Day  Earth Week  Ecology  Economic crisis  Edgewood High School  Edgewood Stadium  Effigy Mounds  Elections  Encampments  Engineering Division  Environment  Environmental Justice  Environmental Racism  Eviction Prevention  F-35s  Family Definition  Finance Committee  Financial Assistance  Focused Interruption Coalition  Food Access  Food Deserts  Food Drive  Food Scraps Recycling  Forest Hill Cemetery  Forest Hills Cemetery  Forward Dane  Friend of Olin-Turville  Friends of Lake Wingra  Friends of Monona Bay  Friends of Olin-Turville  Gallery Night  Gaylord Nelson  Gentrification  George Floyd  Glen Golf Park  Glenway Golf Course  Glenway Golf Park  Glenway Woods  Good Neighbor Gathering  Goodman Pool  grassroots leadership  Green Infrastructure  Green New Deal  Greenbush  GreenPower Program  Grocery Gap  Gun violence  Henry Vilas Zoo  Ho Chunk  Ho-Chunk Nation  Homeless Services  Hope  Housing  Housing Ordinances  Immigrant Rights  Independent Community Oversight  Internships  Jacob Blake  Jazz In The Park  Jeffrey Erlanger  John Muir  John Nolen Drive Reconstruction  Judge Everett Mitchell  Juneteenth  Kaleem Caire  Kenosha  Lake Monona Waterfront  Lake Weeds  Lake Wingra  Lakeside Street  Land Banking  Law Park  Leaf Management  Leaf Pick-up  Light Pollution  Listening Session  Local Preemption  Luna's Groceries  Madison Bike Week  Madison Fire Department  Madison Forward Fund  Madison Metro  Madison Parks  Madison Parks Foundation  Madison Public Library  Madison Water Utility  MaskUpMadison  Master Plan  Maurer's Urban Market  Maurer's Urban Market  Mayor Satya  McGrath E. Olin Project  McGrath Project  McGrath Property Group  Men's Homeless Shelter  Metro Transit Network Redesign  MLK Day  MMSD  MMSD  Monona Bay  Monroe Street  Monroe Street Festival  Monroe Street Library  Move Madison Forward  Movin' Out  MPD  MPD  Nature  Neighborhood Grant Program  Neighborhood House  Neighborhood Indicators Project  New Day  New Grocery Store  Noise Pollution  Office Hours  Olin Ave  Olin Park  Oscar Mayer Special Area Plan  Parking Restrictions  Parks  Passenger Rail  Paul Wellstone  Pedestrian Safety  PFAS  PFAS  PFAS  Phosphorous  Pick N' Save  Plan Commission  Plan Commission  Planning Framework  Police & Fire Commission  Police Brutality  Policing  Property Assessment  Property Damage  Protests  Public Art  Public Health  Public Hearing  Public safety  Public Safety Review Commission  Racial Disparities  Racial Equity  Racism  Rain Gardens  Recycling  Recycling User Fee  Redistricting  Regent Street  Reindahl Park  Rental Assistance  Reparations  Resident Input  Resource Recovery Charge  Restorative Justice  Road Salt  Romnes  Rule Enterprises  Safe Streets Madison  Salt Routes  Salt Wise  Sandbags  Schools  Schools  Service  Shared Streets  Shared Use Paths  Sidewalks  Snow Emergency Zone  Snow Removal  Snow Update  Social Distancing  Social Distancing  Solar  South Madison  South Madison Plan  South Park Corridor  Southwest Commuter Path  Spring cleaning  SROs  SSM  SSM Clinic  State Rep. Shelia Stubbs  State Street  State Street riots  State Street riots  Stormwater Retention  Streatery  Street Closings  Street Reconstruction  Street Repair  Streets  Sustainability  Sustainable Future  TFOGS  Tiny Homes  TOD Overlay  Together  Town of Madison  Traffic Calming  Traffic Impacts  Traffic Safety  Traffic Speed  Transit  Transit-Oriented Development  Transportation  Transportation Commission  Transportation Demand Management  Trash Collection  Tree Canopy  Tree Pruning  Trees  Triangle  Truax  Truman Olson  Urban Design Commission  Urban Forestry Task Force  Urban Triage  Vaccination  Vaccine Availability  Vaccines  VFW Redevelopment  Viewshed  Vilas  Vilas Park  Vilas Park Drive  Vilas Park Master Plan  Violence Prevention  Vision Zero  Volunteer Opportunities  Voter Registration  Voting  Walking  Water Conservation  Water Quality  Waterfront Planning  Watershed Studies  West High  White Militia Vigilantes  White Supremacy  Wingra Park  Wingra Proper Watershed Study  Wingra Triangle  Wingra Triangle  Winter  Winter Parking  Wonder Bar  Yard Waste  Zoning  Zoning Ordinance