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When you get a cold, or the flu, or other viral illnesses, your immune system adapts to keep you from getting that particular strain of illness again. So, too, with vaccines, which essentially train your body to fight off infection from the virus or bacterium they’re designed to protect you from.

Except your immune system doesn’t always cooperate. Some vaccines need booster shots over time, and some people - especially the elderly - are susceptible to diseases they would not have caught at another time in their life. So what’s going on here?

PunkToad / Flickr

Leadership in Milwaukee - at one level - has been pretty consistent for a long time. Since 1948, the city of Milwaukee has had only five mayors. Four of them - Frank Zeidler, Henry Maier, John Norquist, and Tom Barrett - represent 69 and two thirds years in office.

There has been much more turnover on the Common Council - and the presidency of the Council.  One person who has experienced both is Marvin Pratt, who served as mayor in the four months between John Norquist’s resignation and Tom Barrett’s election, and was common council president from 2000-2004.

Courtesy of 'Wisconsin Foodie'

Wisconsin Foodie turns 10 years old this year, but it first began as a vague idea sketched out on a cocktail napkin. The Emmy® Award-winning television series and companion website was the brainchild of Milwaukee-based documentary filmmaker Arthur Ircink, who back in 2007 was watching the popularity of cooking shows explode nationally.

Essay: Billy

8 hours ago
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People who study empathy say that before you can empathize with the plight of others, it’s important to see their humanity and what it has in common with your own.  One of the problems with homelessness is that we don’t always do that - we distance ourselves from the stories of homeless people.

For Lake Effect essayist Jan Wilberg, something profound and life-changing forever changed her view:

Dan Harmon

The Swedish automaker Volvo made headlines last year - twice. The car company, already known for its safety, stepped up its game by asserting that "no one riding in their cars made after 2020 will die in a crash."

"Our idea is to avoid the collision in the first place, so that all those other things, like body rigidity, airbags, seat belts, become a safety net," says Volvo USA spokesman Russell Datz.

Susan Bence

Milwaukee has a lead problem. Sixteenth Street Community Health Centers isn't waiting for city leaders to come up with a comprehensive plan, instead it is holding workshops to inform families how to better protect themselves.

Their second Lead-Safe Home Workshop will take place this Wednesday, March 21 from 6 to 8 pm at the Wisconsin Black Historical Society, just off 27th Street on Center.

Audrey Nowakowski

Not every story assignment turns out to be a life-affirming exercise.  Milwaukee writer Dan Simmons has written about a lot in his time here - from a doctor who treats bonobos to changes in the housing market. But Simmons’ most recent assignment for Milwaukee Magazine turned out to form a connection for which he says he will always be grateful.

A report out earlier this month showed a 30% increase in overdoses from opioid use around the country in just the last year.  In Wisconsin, the numbers are even more striking - the state led the nation with a 109% increase in overdoses reported by emergency rooms.

READ: Jump in Overdoses Shows Opioid Epidemic Has Worsened

Chicken Feed, Probiotics and Staying Ahead of the Agri-Tech Curve

Mar 19, 2018

After getting his PhD in food microbiology from Iowa State, Tom Rehberger took a research-oriented faculty position in Oklahoma State’s animal science department. There he met critical collaborators with whom he discovered that introducing certain friendly bacteria into cows’ stomachs kept them from getting a potentially fatal form of nitrate toxicity, known as chocolate blood syndrome.

That discovery set Tom on a commercial path and gave him Milwaukee connections because Phar-More Biochemical, the company that helped fund that first startup, was based here.

Susan Bence

Along the shore of Lake Michigan, a coal-burning power plant occupies more than 1,000 acres of land in Oak Creek. Joe Dubanewicz, who lives nearby, has been wondering about the plant, so he reached out to WUWM's Beats Me with his concerns.

“I am wondering if the coal ash ponds are leaching into the groundwater. Who tests the groundwater and are there any monitoring stations for coal dust?” he asks.

Justin W Kern

It looks like some of Gov. Walker's big initiatives in this election year, could die in the legislature after all.  That includes school safety measures and a plan to close Lincoln Hills School for Boys.  

The Senate on Tuesday is scheduled to act on Walker's plan to give $100 to families for each child under 18.  But, it's a different plan from what the Assembly passed.  So, the Assembly would have to come back into session to approve the Senate changes -- and so far, Speaker Robin Vos isn't budging.

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Around the country, including here in Wisconsin, thousands of students walked out of school to demand action on gun control. The organized walk out comes after the latest high-profile school shooting which resulted in 17 deaths at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Alex Wong / Getty Images News

Dissent came quickly this week within the Republican Party after President Trump fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and announced he wished to appoint C.I.A. Director Mike Pompeo to the top diplomatic post.  Republican Senator Rand Paul announced he would oppose that appointment, as well as that of Gina Haspel, who Trump named as his choice to lead the C.I.A..  Republicans hold the narrowest of margins in the Senate, so Paul’s objections could place the appointment in peril.

courtesy of Ensemble Caprice

On Saturday afternoon at the Zelazo Center on the UWM campus, Early Music Now welcomes Ensemble Caprice, one of Canada’s preeminent early music groups.  The group is based in Montreal, but are on a North American tour, and will bring Milwaukee audiences a program of familiar and unusual baroque works in a program they call iLove Baroque.

Theatre Gigante

Most of us know the story of Tarzan, the boy raised by apes in the jungle.  We also know about the object of his affection - the woman called Jane. A play getting its U.S. premiere in Milwaukee starts with those well-known characters, but rapidly veers into uncharted territory.