Notes from an inaugural Y2K meeting : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Five people gathered at a local restaurant to form the "Metro Milwaukee Y2K Preparedness Group". It lasted about 3 hours.

Mission statement: "To raise awareness regarding the seriousness of the global Y2K problem as it will impact the Metropolitan Milwaukee area, and to encourage individual and community preparedness."

I was provided with the e-mail address of an alternative newspaper, and will write to the editor this evening.

Much discussion about the possible negative reaction of raising awareness amongst urban minorities. My 2 cents worth: This information can save your life. I am not responsible for creating panic; only raising awareness. I feel obligated to do so, and will continue making the effort until 12/99 if necessary.

I was also given the names of the publishers of the largest minority-run newspaper in town. I will also write to them tonight.

We agreed to meet regularly. Meeting times TBA as others expressed interest in attending, but couldn't on a Sunday, due to church or other conflicts.

All in all, a very enjoyable meeting. The group is very dedicated, and the backgrounds are diverse. Anyone in the Milwaukee area who wants more info, feel free to contact me.

-- Steve Hartsman (, October 25, 1998


Here is a copy of my letter to Joel McNally, editor of the Shepherd Express. His e-mail is Their web page is

Mr. McNally: I have attempted to educate the mainstream media in Milwaukee about Y2K. I have had a letter to the editor printed in the Journal Sentinel, but most reporters are either uninformed on the subject, or are under strict orders from their editors not to print the truth, lest the public panic. I suspect the latter. Y2K is the most important issue facing the world, in my opinion. The consequences could very well be catastrophic, making the Great Depression pale in comparison. Is this overstating the case? I don't believe so. Anyone who understands the scope of the problem and researches the issue, as I have, inevitably reaches the same conclusion. I have spent thousands of hours researching this issue. I have worked on a Y2K project, so I have seen firsthand how difficult they are. I am a member of the Metro Milwaukee Y2K Preparedness Group. I have created a Powerpoint presentation on Y2K, which I am attaching. I urge you to view it. The alternative press needs to do an in-depth, informative series of articles on Y2K. Failure to do so is at best poor journalism. At worst, it is irresponsible. I will be happy to write the story if no other journalist will. The story must be written. Raising awareness now will minimize the panic later. If the Shepherd Express doesn't print it, who will?

-- Steve Hartsman (, October 25, 1998.

Steve, everything you are doing is right, but timing is everything, and there just is not enough left. This is a sinking ship, and there are not enough lifeboats for everyone. That is the sad truth about Y2K, the problem that cannot be fixed....

-- Jack (, October 27, 1998.

Raising awarenss IS building lifeboats. Like Steve, I'll be doing what I can to make people aware right up until 12/31/1999 if that's what it takes. Right now, we can still build lifeboats. But I'll keep hammering away when it's no more than a raft or a plank I can offer. If I didn't know about the severity of this crisis, I'd sure want someone to tell ME!

Go Steve! You're shinin' bright, baby!

-- Faith Weaver (, October 27, 1998.

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