H/T to goodservice for passing this along.
The New Yorker has a article featuring the Overpass Light Brigade about the OLB actions and a bit of the relevant history.
During the seven-month campaign to recall Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Lane Hall, an English professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, helped found the Overpass Light Brigade, a loose-knit community of activists that gathered frequently to display anti-Walker messages over highway overpasses. The volunteers, who form words by lining up in a row holding L.E.D.-illuminated letters, are still active, even after Walker’s victory in the June recall vote. Lately, the group has taken to transmitting Occupy Wall Street-inspired aphorisms like “QUESTION AUSTERITY” to motorists, but last Sunday, Lane and his cohorts gathered in downtown Milwaukee at a candlelight vigil for the victims of Sunday’s mass murder at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek. They brought their letters again, with a different message: “WISCONSIN WEEPS.”Noise of rain has already posted a pictoral diary of the Wednesday night event at the community vigil which is well worth a look and read (as well as a tip and rec). From creating the letters, to organizing the events, developing the message of the night, taking the pictures, and even sending directions for the lost and easily confused (yeah, me, even with a Garmin) noise of rain and badscience are the father and mother, founders, and creative geniuses behind it all.
The end of the article was just as important:
Last night, Oak Creek held its own vigil. Thousands of people attended, including Nirupama Rao, the Indian Ambassador to the United States; Scott Walker; and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Walker’s Democratic opponent in the recall. Lane Hall and his light-holders were invited, too. They stood behind their old foe as he spoke. “One of the things that we really felt was that this is our community, this isn’t something that happened to outsiders,” Hall said. “When people envision Wisconsin, they don’t envision it in its ethnic complexity.”Yes, it was hard knowing that Scott Walker and Lt. Governor Rebeccah Kleefisch were up on the stage I was standing behind, placed there to provide relief to any holder who indicated they needed to be replaced by putting their hand behind them. Equally hard to listen to him mouth the typical politician platitudes that said the typical things. He left early because he got a call that his wife was being taken to the hospital (she is recovering from an appendectomy last night and I wish her a speedy recovery).
We were there for different reasons; to honor the fallen, support a hurting community, and demonstrate solidarity with our brothers and sisters because they are our brothers and sisters.