Monday, September 04, 2006

Happy Labor Day

I'm never happy on Labor Day... although it's not an official end of the summer, I've had the "school year" schedule of seasons beaten into me for far too long, and so seeing Jerry Lewis on TV over the weekend always marks the semi-official end of the summer for me.

I came across a nice set of quotes which spoke to the holiday, though, and so I would like to paste them here, coutesy of Details:
The fight is never about grapes or lettuce. It is always about people.
-Cesar Chavez

The labor movement means just this: It is the last noble protest of the American people against the power of incorporated wealth.
-Wendell Phillips

What does labor want? We want more schoolhouses and less jails; more books and less arsenals; more learning and less vice; more leisure and less greed; more justice and less revenge; in fact, more of the opportunities to cultivate our better natures, to make manhood more noble, womanhood more beautiful, and childhood more happy and bright.
-Samuel Gompers

The essence of trade unionism is social uplift. The labor movement has been the haven for the dispossessed, the despised, the neglected, the downtrodden, the poor.
-A. Phillip Randolph

With all their faults, trade unions have done more for humanity than any other organization of men that ever existed. They have done more for decency, for honesty, for education, for the betterment of the race, for the developing of character in men, than any other association of men.
-Clarence Darrow
A couple of other thoughts for this Labor Day - according to the United States Census, over 7.5 million Americans hold down two jobs to earn a living. About 294,000 of them actually work full-time in both positions.

This map documents the change in the median household income between 1999 and 2005.

I am a proud member of a union, and I give thanks for the Labor Movement on this Labor Day - for without unions, a majority of you would not have had today off, let alone such luxuries as a 40-hour work week, a safe work environment, or a guarantee of a minimum wage, even if Congress hasn't found a way to raise it in over a decade.

Posted by FleshPresser at 10:30 PM /


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