Third Milwaukee officer killed since June

A 17-year police veteran was shot and killed as he served a warrant on the Milwaukee’s south side Wednesday, becoming the city’s third officer killed in the line of duty in eight months. (Feb. 6)

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AP Top Stories February 6 P

Here’s the latest for Wednesday, Feb. 6th: Trump claims Islamic State demise in DC speech; Trump denounces House lawmaker over new investigation; Virginia AG admits wearing blackface; Milwaukee museum displays bobbleheads.

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Bobblehead museum opens in Milwaukee

The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum has opened in Milwaukee with a collection of thousands of bobbling heads from sports, pop culture and politics. (Feb. 6)

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Milwaukee parking checker must endure frigid air

(29 Jan 2019) Milwaukee parking official Mark Lewis, who has to work outside in extreme cold, tries to keep a positive attitude (Jan. 29)

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Wisc. residents clear snow ahead of brutal cold

(28 Jan 2019) Heavy snow and gusting winds have created blizzard-like conditions across the Upper Midwest. In Milwaukee, residents cleared snow from their driveways and sidewalks ahead of brutal cold expected later. (Jan. 28)

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Milwaukee bus driver rescues wandering child from freezing temps

A Milwaukee bus driver stops to save a barefoot toddler from wandering into an intersection, and carries the child out of the below freezing temperatures. According to the Milwaukee County Transit System, the 19-month-old girl had gone missing after authorities believed her mother had a mental health crisis.

Police encounter highlights tense race relations

(6 Jan 2019) Two Milwaukee police encounters involving men believed to be armed over the course of 15 months ended dramatically different and with the question of how race factors into officers’ actions. (Jan. 6)

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Obama takes aim at Trump in fiery Milwaukee speech

(26 Oct 2018) Obama takes aim at Trump in fiery Milwaukee speech

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Milwaukee zoo has first red panda cub

(26 Sep 2018) The Milwaukee County Zoo finally has first red panda cub, with Dr. Lily born in June. (Sept. 26)

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Aziz Ansari Didn’t Address His #MeToo Moment At A Sold Out Show In Knoxville

Aziz Ansari is making a comeback.

Over the last month, the comedian has started hosting “pop-up shows” in cities across the country. They’re billed under the title “Working Out New Material” with the intent of doing exactly that.

With only a few days’ notice, he’s sold out venues in Philadelphia, Milwaukee, Madison, Bennettsville, South Carolina, and most recently, Knoxville. They’re some of the first advertised stand-up sets Ansari has done since sexual harassment allegations were made against him in January by an anonymous 23-year-old photographer in a Babe.net article, which added his name to a long list of powerful men swept up in the #MeToo movement. Ansari subsequently shrank himself from the spotlight: no performances, no interviews, barely any paparazzi shots.

Ansari’s position in the constellation of Hollywood #MeToo stories is a complicated one. It happened on a date, while many of the other incidents happened under more professional guises. It’s one woman’s story, in contrast to the scores of victims who have shared stories about Harvey Weinstein and Charlie Rose. These details, however, don’t render Ansari’s accuser’s story or feelings any less valid. If anything, they warrant an even more nuanced conversation about enthusiastic consent and victim-blaming.

But so far, if anyone has gone to one of Ansari’s shows looking to gain clarity on his accusations, they haven’t found it.

Thursday night’s Knoxville show at the Tennessee Theatre was announced a week ago and just a few days after Louis C.K. made a surprise appearance at New York City’s Comedy Cellar. Tickets went for $42 and sold out quickly despite the short-notice. Par for Ansari’s previous “Working Out New Material” shows, the audience was warned that phones and smart watches would be locked away during the show. It’s a practice that’s become de rigueur at comedy shows to prevent jokes from hitting the internet and spoiling the experience of future audiences.

After brief sets from Wil Sylvince and Phil Hanley, Ansari made his way to the stage, wearing a T-shirt from Kanye West’s Yeezus tour, and was welcomed by roaring applause. A bit about staying off his own phone rolled seamlessly into jokes about how quickly and incisively the internet vilifies people — without leaving room for a nuanced conversation. He talked about Roseanne, the CEO of Starbucks, and the teen who was accused of cultural appropriation for wearing a Chinese qipao to prom.

At one point, he quizzes the audience on a new outrage he saw online: Pizza Hut is embroiled in scandal because some customers thought they were delivered a pizza with the pepperonis arranged in the shape of a swastika. But some people online think it looks more like a Star of David. Other people think it just looks like a regular pizza. He likens it to the Laurel/Yanny auditory illusion that went viral in May and encourages the audience to weigh in.

Clap if you saw a swastika. Clap if you saw a Star of David. Clap if you just saw a pizza. (There are no visual aids, he’s operating on the assumption that you know what he’s talking about.) At the end of the poll, Ansari reveals he made the whole thing up, but everyone who clapped chose to take a side anyway. It’s a believable premise, and the bit easily functions as an allegory for a variety of outrage greatest hits like The Dress, “fake news,” or even Ansari’s own experience with the Babe.net article.

To be clear, there is no “Babe.net,” no “#MeToo,” no “Louis C.K.” no “Harvey Weinstein” in this show. The majority of Ansari’s Knoxville material meditated on race in America, especially his own experiences as an Indian actor in Hollywood — getting mistaken for Kumail Nanjiani, his take on The Problem With Apu, having difficulties casting a younger version of himself for Master Of None, and the realities of dating as part of a mixed race couple in the public eye.

Ansari goes on to explain that sometimes his girlfriend doesn’t pick up on racist microaggressions because she’s a white woman from Denmark. He had to explain to her why publications refer to her as “Becky.” When someone yells at them on the street that she probably gets a lot of free taxi rides with him as her boyfriend, she takes it to be a comment on her being perceived as a gold digger, only dating him for his wealth. But Ansari explains to her that the man is using the stereotype that Indian people are taxi drivers to make fun of him.

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