Many of us are members of oppressed minorities.
But almost ALL of us are members of the the largest and potentially most powerful majority in the world: the working class.
Fun fact: According to @nfrykman in his wonderful "The Bloody Flag - Mutiny in the Age of Atlantic Revolution", in 1768, sailors on the Thames River struck their sails in protest, and this was the origin of the term 'strike'.
#LaborHistory #WorkingClass #protest #Maritime
Today in Labor History June 7, 1913: The radical labor union, IWW, held a fundraising pageant at Madison Square Gardens. The production featured songs and a reenactment of events from the ongoing Paterson strike. It was created and performed by 1,000 mill workers from the silk industry strike. John Reed organized a march of strikers into Manhattan for the pageant.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #iww #paterson #women #union #strike #MadisonSquareGarden
Today in Labor History June 7, 1896: Anarchists supposedly set off a bomb during a Corpus Christi parade in Barcelona, Spain. As a result, a dozen people died and thirty were wounded. No one knows who actually set off the bomb, but the government blamed anarchists, who had set off numerous bombs over the previous four years. Consequently, the government went on a witch-hunt, arresting and torturing dozens of anarchists in the infamous Montjuich Prison. However, many leading anarchists denied the accusations and said they would never have set off a deadly bomb in a working-class community like this. They reserved their attacks for members of the ruling class. Nevertheless, the government tried and executed five anarchists, all of whom proclaimed their innocence. They sentenced 67 others to life in prison. Worldwide protests erupted in response.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #bombing #WitchHunt #prison #spain #barcelona #execution #torture #protest
Today in Labor History June 7, 1892: The authorities arrested Homer Plessy for refusing to leave his seat in the "whites-only" car of a train. He lost the resulting court case, the landmark Plessy v. Ferguson Supreme Court decision, which codified segregation and paved the way for Jim Crow. The ruling is commonly known as “separate, but equal,” and was later ruled “unequal” in actuality, in 1954, in Brown v Board of Education.
On the one-year anniversary of Plessy’s act of civil disobedience, Mahatma Gandhi was forcibly ejected from a train in Pietermaritzberg, South Africa for refusing to vacate a 1st class carriage for a white man, in a similar act of civil disobedience.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #racism #segregation #JimCrow #CivilRights #CivilDisobedience #gandhi #SouthAfrica #apartheid #SCOTUS
Today in Labor History June 7, 1866: 1,800 Fenian raiders were forced back to the U.S. after looting and plundering the Saint-Armand and Frelighsburg areas in Canada. The Fenian raiders were members of the Fenian Brotherhood (Irish Republican Brotherhood), a U.S.-based Irish Republican organization that attacked British installations in Canada. Their goal was Irish independence from the UK. They carried out raids in 1866, as well as 1870-1871. The IRB also took part in the ill-fated Fenian Rising, in Ireland, in 1867.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #irish #independence #ireland #republican #colonialism #IRB #canada #british
Today in Labor History June 7, 1788: Residents of Grenoble, France, tossed roof tiles and junk down upon royal troops during the Day of the Tiles. This was one of the first events of the French Revolution. Tensions had been rising because of poor harvests, poverty and hunger. To make matters worse, the aristocracy and the church continued to collect royalties from the peasants and refused to do anything to help alleviate their misery. On the morning of June 7, men and women began marching through the streets of Grenoble, with sticks and rocks, axes and metal bars. They took over the cathedral and rang the bells, which drew in peasants from the countryside. When the navy attacked a 75-year-old man, the people began ripping up the streets. They climbed to the rooftops and began throwing tiles and other projectiles at the soldiers below. They forced the politicians to flee.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #France #Revolution #poverty #peasants
Today in Labor History June 7, 1971: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that clothing with the words "Fuck the Draft" was protected by the First amendment. The Court overturned the conviction of Paul Cohen for disturbing the peace, setting the precedent that vulgar writing is protected under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.
In 1968, Kiyoshi Kuromiya designed this poster and sent orders by mail. He was arrested by the FBI and charged with sending indecent material through the Post Office. Later that year, after beating the charges, Kuromiya defied the authorities by handing out 2000 of the posters at the Chicago Democratic Convention. The photo is of Detroiter Bill Greenshields was taken at random during a 1967 March on the Pentagon and used by Kuromiya.
Today in Labor History June 7, 1929: Striking textile workers battled police in Gastonia, North Carolina, during the Loray Mill Strike. Police Chief O.F. Aderholt was accidentally killed by one of his own officers during a protest march by striking workers. Nevertheless, the authorities arrested six strike leaders. They were all convicted of “conspiracy to murder.”
The strike lasted from April 1 to September 14. It started in response to the “stretch-out” system, where bosses doubled the spinners’ and weavers’ work, while simultaneously lowering their wages. When the women went on strike, the bosses evicted them from their company homes. Masked vigilantes destroyed the NTWU union headquarters. The NTWU set up a tent city for the workers, with armed guards to protect them from the vigilantes.
One of the main organizers was a poor white woman named Ella May Wiggans. She was a single mother, with nine kids. Rather than living in the tent city, she chose to live in the African American hamlet known as Stumptown. She was instrumental in creating solidarity between black and white workers and rallying them with her music. Some of her songs from the strike were “Mill Mother’s Lament,” and “Big Fat Boss and the Workers.” Her music was later covered by Pete Seeger and Woodie Guthrie, who called her the “pioneer of the protest ballad.” During the strike, vigilantes shot her in the chest. She survived, but later died of whooping cough due to poverty and inadequate medical care.
For really wonderful fictionalized accounts of this strike, read “The Last Ballad,” by Wiley Cash (2017) and “Strike!” by Mary Heaton Vorse (1930).
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #EllaMayWiggans #textile #women #feminist #union #communism #vigilante #PoliceBrutality #police #acab #solidarity #racism #poverty #NorthCarolina #fiction #HistoricalFiction #author @bookstadon
Added to my reading list.
How schools teach children about their social station
Check it out! 👇
#WorkingClass #UpperMiddleClass #Socioeconomics #SocialClass #Schools #Privilege #PeterFrancisHarvey #Kids #InequalityInAmerica #Harvard #Fas #ElementarySchools #Children #NationalnworldAffairs
Today in Labor History June 6, 1982: Israel invaded Lebanon, remaining until June 6, 1985. The war was led by Ariel Sharon, who later became prime minister, despite the Kahan Commission later finding him culpable for the Sabra and Shatila massacre, which killed up to 3,500 Palestinian refugees and Lebanese Shiites. By the end of the war, Israel had lost over 650 soldiers. However, up to 2,400 PLO militants and 1,200 Syria soldiers were killed. And as many as 20,000 civilians were killed during the war.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #zionism #israel #palestine #lebanon #invasion #occupation #massacre #SabraAndShatila #refugees #HumanRights #PLO
Today in Labor History June 6, 1937: A general strike by 12,000 autoworkers and others in Lansing, MI shuts down the city for a month in what was to become known as the city’s “Labor Holiday.” A judge had recently imposed an injunction on workers, making it illegal for them to picket, blockade or interfere in the operations of Capital city Wrecking Company. The workers ignored the injunction were arrested, including the wife of the auto workers local union president, leaving their three children at home unattended. In response, they called a General Strike. Flying squadrons of out-town workers came in solidarity to support the General Strike. They were successful in forcing negotiations that got all the prisoners released. However, the strike continued in East Lansing, where anti-labor university students battled with workers, dumping some of their cars into the river.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #strike #union #sabotage #GeneralStrike #prison #solidarity #autoworkers #michigan
Today in Labor History 1894: Colorado’s governor sent in the Colorado state militia to support the Cripple Creek miners' strike, the only time in history that a state militia was used to help a workers’ struggle, rather than to suppress it.
The mine owners were demanding a 10-hour day without an increase in pay. In response, the miners went on strike. There was considerable violence from both sides during the strike, led by the Western Federation of Miners (WFM). On March 16, some miners ambushed, shot and beat some sheriff’s deputies. The judge, a WFM member, let the miners off, but charged the deputies with carrying concealed weapons.
Furious, the Sheriff arrested 20 union leaders. Meanwhile, the mine owners conspired to bring in hundreds of scabs and deputized vigilantes. When the new deputies marched on the strikers’ camp, the miners blew up several mine structures, forcing the deputies to flee. The mine owners hired hundreds more vigilantes for their army. When he heard about the size of the miner owners’ force, the governor declared the deputies illegal and sent in state troops to defend the miners.
On June 5, the day before the state troops arrived, the mine owners’ army began cutting telegraph lines and arresting reporters and hundreds of town residents. When the state troops arrived, there were already gun battles going on between the vigilante army and the miners. However, the state troops gained control of the town relatively quickly and the mine owners disbanded their army and sent them home.
300 miners were arrested, but only four were convicted. And the populist governor pardoned them all. The WFM won, keeping the 8-hour day and their $3/day wages. And, they were so popular because of their victory, that they easily organized most of the other industries in the region (e.g., waitresses, laundry workers, bartenders, newsboys) into 54 new locals.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #mining #colorado #union #strike #solidarity #militia #sabotage #police #PoliceBrutality #acab
David Sirota: Working Class Will Be “Deeply Harmed” by Biden’s “Big Win” on Debt Ceiling
"President Joe Biden on Saturday signed a debt ceiling deal into law that averts a catastrophic default by the United States through January 1, 2025, hailing it as a “big win” for the country. Critics say the agreement protects wealthy corporations and tax dodgers while imposing new cuts on key social programs and expanding work requirements for some recipients of food stamps. The legislation has also been called a “dirty deal” by climate activists because it rolls back environmental regulations and fast-tracks the approval of the Mountain Valley Pipeline through West Virginia and Virginia, a pet project of powerful Democratic West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin. “The working class of this country was deeply harmed by this bill,” says investigative journalist David Sirota of The Lever. He also faults Democratic leaders for not raising the debt ceiling after the midterm elections, when the party still had control of Congress. “What you see is a picture of a party that wanted this outcome,” says Sirota."
#climatechange #ClimateCrisis #climatejustice #biodiversitydecline #socialjustice #Biden #WorkingClass #systemchange
David Sirota: #WorkingClass Will Be “Deeply Harmed” by #Biden’s “Big Win” on #DebtCeiling
"The working class of this country was deeply harmed by this bill."
"The President celebrating this bill as a 'big win' instead of saying 'this is something we had to do, it's kind of unfortunate' is an admission about what the Dem President & Party see as a win & for whom they want to secure such victories."
- David Sirota on #DemocracyNow today
#Biden #Democrats #DebtCeiling #Climate #Environment #Poverty #FoodStamps #DirtyDeal #FossilFuel #MountainValleyPipeline #StudentDebt #WorkingClass
SCOTUS hands major blow to Labor:
Last Thursday, the U.S. Supreme court ruled 8-1 that employers could sue employees to recover "damages" resulting from a strike action. This could, potentially, make all strike actions illegal, since the entire point of a strike is to cause monetary damages as leverage to force employers to agree to workers' demands.
Ketanji Brown Jackson was the only dissenting justice. She said this was a question of whether workers were legally free or just “indentured servants,” who can be prohibited by law from refusing to work. The other 2 liberal justices, Sotomayer and Kagen, both sided with the right-wing justices, and with employers.
Solidarity with striking dockworkers!
Dockers refused to come to work on June 2, causing the complete shut down of the ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, Oakland, Tacoma, Seattle and Hueneme. This came in the wake of insulting offers of a $1.56/hour wage increase by the Pacific Maritime Association.
#solidarity #strike #wages #longshore #docker #union #ilwu #WorkingClass #inflation
Today in Labor History June 5, 1925: Mine owners in La Coruna, Chile, launched an attack on rebel workers in a nitrate mine encampment, killing over 2,000 workers. Over 500 workers were tortured in Iqueque. This came in the wake of an earlier massacre in March, in which 500 were slaughtered by the government.
#LaborHistory #WorkingClass #strike #massacre #PoliceAbuse #police #acab #chile #torture #rebellion
Today in Labor History June 5, 1969: 250 imprisoned U.S. soldiers rioted at the military penal stockade at Fort Dix over barbarous conditions and the tortures being inflicted on them by the US military state. The majority were in prison for going AWOL, resisting the draft, or as conscientious objectors. Many were being held without trial. Their grievances included overcrowding, starvation, beatings, being chained to chairs, forced confessions and participation in an unjust war. 38 of them were charged with inciting to riot. (Note the sign over the entrance to the prison: “Obedience to the Law is Freedom.” The photographer, David Fenton, called it Mussolini-like. It reminds me of the slogan over Auschwitz: “Work Sets You free.” Embarrassed, the military removed the sign soon after the photograph was published).
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #prison #mutiny #uprising #vietnam #antiwar #PeaceActivist #torture #Riot
Today in Labor History June 5, 1967: Israel attacked Egypt and Syria, during the Six-Day War, resulting in its illegal occupation of the Sinai Peninsula, West Bank, Gaza Strip & Golan Heights, and the displacement of 400,000 Palestinians. During the war, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan and Kuwait all supported the Arab coalition. Over 700 Israeli soldiers died in the war. 10,000-16,000 died on the Arab side. Additionally, 15 UN peacekeepers died, as well as 34 U.S. marines, navy and National Security Agents, who died when Israel torpedoed the USS Liberty, a U.S. spy ship that was in international waters. Israel claimed it was an accident and the U.S. government officially accepted this explanation. However, many believed it was a deliberate attack, including Secretary of State, Dean Rusk, and many survivors of the attack.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #israel #palestine #occupation #war #SaudiArabia #lebanon #syria #egypt
Today in Labor History June 5, 1919: Richard Scarry was born. Scarry wrote and illustrated humorous children’s books with elaborate scenes of anthropomorphized animals. Some of his recurring characters were Lowly Worm, Huckle Cat, Mistress Mouse the tow truck driver, Wild Bill Hiccup, Gold Bug and Dingo the reckless driver. His fictional world, Busy Town, is characterized by a strong sense of community and mutual aid. Over the years, he revised his stories in an attempt to eliminate racial and gender stereotypes.
#RichardScarry #children #fiction #ChildrensBooks #books #author #writer #illustration #WorkingClass #MutualAid @bookstadon
Today in Labor History June 5, 1832: The poor of Paris revolted against the new monarchy, in the wake of crop failures, food shortages and a cholera epidemic, which killed over 100,000 people in France. The poor were especially hard hit by the outbreak. Many believed that the wealthy had poisoned their wells. The Society of the Rights of Man organized an army and raised the red flag, declaring "Liberty or Death." Nearly 100 Republicans died in their attempt to overthrow the government. Over 70 monarchists died defending it. The uprising was the inspiration for Victor Hugo's “Les Miserables,” which depicts the period leading up to the rebellion. Hugo was living in Paris at the time, working on a play. When he heard the gunfire, he ran outside to see what was happening, and quickly got pinned down by gunfire, taking shelter between Republican barricades.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #poverty #uprising #insurrection #rebellion #VictorHugo #epidemic #outbreak #paris #france #novel #fiction #author #writer @bookstadon
When 3 Men Richer Than 165 Million People, Sanders Says Working Class Must 'Come Together'
#CommonDreams #IncomeInequality #BernieSanders #WorkingClass #EconomicJustice #WealthGap #Politics #News
Today in Labor History June 4, 1947: The House of Representatives approved the Taft-Hartley Act. The legislation allows the president of the United States to intervene in labor disputes. Even worse, it banned wildcat strikes, solidarity or secondary strikes, and political strikes, effectively eliminating the General Strike from workers’ arsenal. The law was a direct response to the strike wave of 1945-1946, the largest wave of strikes in U.S. history. It was particularly a response to the Oakland General Strike of 1946, the last General Strike that has occurred in the U.S. And it is one of most effective anti-labor laws ever enacted in the U.S.
#LaborHistory #WorkingClass #TaftHartley #wildcat #strike #GeneralStrike #solidarity
Today in Labor History June 4, 1943: The Zoot Suit riots began in Los Angeles, with white soldiers attacking and stripping mostly Latino, but also some black, Italian and Filipino youth who wearing zoot suits. They did it in response to wartime propaganda vilifying the wearers of zoot suits as unpatriotic hoodlums. There was a government ban on zoot suits and other long, woolen articles of clothing because of war rationing. Additionally, the LA Times had been whipping up racial tensions by publishing propaganda associating Mexican and Hispanic youth with delinquency, particularly in the wake of the Sleepy Lagoon murder. Race riots also occurred that summer in Mobile, Beaumont, Detroit, Chicago, San Diego, Oakland, Philadelphia and New York City.
During the Great Depression, the U.S. had deported between 500,000 and 2 million Mexicans. Of the 3 million who remained, the largest concentration lived in Los Angeles. Because of discrimination, many were forced into jobs with below-poverty wages. And then, the U.S. military built a naval academy in the Latino community of Chavez Ravine, further exacerbating tensions.
Zoot suits (baggy pegged pants with a long, flamboyant jacket that reached the knees) became popular in the early 1940s, particularly among young African American men. It was associated with a sense of pride, individuality and rebellion against mainstream culture. The trend quickly made its way into the Hispanic and Filipino subcultures in southern California. During this time, there was also a rise of pachuco culture among Latin youth. Chicano or pachuco jazz had become incredibly popular. Some of the great Pachuco band leaders included Lalo Guerrero, Don Tosti and Don Ramon Martinez.
Margarita Engle depicted The Zoot Suit riots in her young adult novel, Jazz Owls (2018), which she wrote in verse.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #racism #RaceRiot #riot #ZootSuit #chicano #Mexican #LosAngeles #propaganda #ww2 #immigration #deportation #hisfic #fiction #novel #books #author @bookstadon
Today in Labor History June 4, 1939: The U.S. blocked the MS St. Louis from landing in Florida. The ship carried 963 Jewish refugees who were fleeing the Nazis. Canada also refused. As a result, the ship was forced back to Europe. Over 200 of its passengers ultimately died in Nazi concentration camps. The ordeal is also known as the Voyage of the Damned. It has been depicted in numerous books, including Julian Barnes’s novel, A History of the World in 10 ½ Chapters (1989); Bodie and Brock Thoene's novel Munich Signature (1991); and Leonardo Padura's novel Herejes (2013). Cordell Hull, who was Secretary of State at the time, and who led the fight to turn the refugees away, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1944. It was one of the worst Nobel prizes ever awarded (along with Henry Kissinger (1973), who facilitated bloody dictatorships in Chile and Argentina, genocides in Bangladesh and East Timor, and carpet bombing of Cambodia. Or Elihu Root (1912), the U.S. Secretary of War who oversaw the brutal repression of the Filipino independence movement. And let’s not forget Shimon Peres, Yitzak Rabin and Yasser Arafat (1994), who jointly won the Nobel Peace Prize despite their histories of human rights abuses. Or Aung San Suu Kyi (1991). Or Mikhail Gorbachev (1990), who sent tanks into the Baltic republics less than a year after winning his “peace” prize, killing numerous civilians. Or Barack Obama (2009), who began assassinating civilians with his drones and arresting more immigrants than his predecessor, George W. Bush, not long after winning his Nobel. Or Woodrow Wilson (1919), an outright racist and apologist for slavery, who sent troops to occupy Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic, and to “intervene” in Cuba, Honduras and Panama, and who oversaw the Palmer raids that led to over 10,000 arrests and over 500 deportations of union leaders, peace activists, socialists and anarchists. Or Menachem Begin (1978), who four years after receiving his “peace” prize launched the bloody invasion of Lebanon, and who refused to fire Ariel Sharon, even after the Kahan Commission found Sharon culpable for the Sabra and Shatila massacre.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #nazis #jews #holocaust #NobelPrize #massacre #genocide #imperialism #invasion #occupation #ConcentrationCamp #HistorialFiction #novel #books #author @bookstadon
Today in Labor History June 4, 1932: Chilean politicians and the military carried out a coup d'etat, installing Marmaduke Grove, who declared Chile a "socialist republic." However, workers were given no means to participate. The Communist Party and many unions opposed the new government because it was run by the military and not by the workers. However, the “socialist” government did temporarily halt evictions and ordered the “Caja de Crédito Popular” to return tools and clothes that workers had pawned there. They also pardoned everyone who participated in the Sailors' mutiny of 1931, when enlisted men rebelled against their officers and the state. Furthermore, they provided free meals to the unemployed. Twelve days later, the military ended the "workers republic." That same year, Farabundo Marti led a short-lived, but successful communist revolution of indigenous peasants in El Salvador. It was violently suppressed by General Martinez a few months later in La Matanza, a genocide of up to 40,000 mostly indigenous people. Martinez then became the first head of state to officially recognize Hitler as leader of Germany.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #socialism #communist #Revolution #uprising #massacre #indigenous #genocide #hitler #nazis #fascism #chile #ElSalvador #FarabundoMarti #mutiny
Today in Labor History June 4, 1919: Trotsky banned the 4th Ukrainian Congress of Free Soviets with his Order #1824. He also sent troops to destroy the Rosa Luxemburg Commune near Provkovski, and declared the Ukrainian anarchist insurgent Nestor Makhno an outlaw. The Free Territory within Ukraine, also known as Makhnovia (after Nestor Makhno) lasted from 1918 to 1921. It was a stateless, anarchist society and it was defended by Makhno’s Revolutionary Insurrectionary Army (AKA the Black Army). Roughly 7 million people lived in the area. The peasants who lived there refused to pay rent to the landowners and seized the estates and livestock of the church, state and private landowners, setting up local committees to manage them and share them among the various villages and communes of the Free State.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #ukraine #NestorMakhno #Revolution #soviet #communist #trotsky #insurrection #BlackArmy #peasant #commune
#DougFord and the #Conservatives have spent their entire time in office sticking it to working people across this city and across the province. Their utter contempt for the #workingclass is palpable.
Today is yet another day of proof that we know what they’re doing, we see through their deceptions, and we won’t stand for it.
Today in Labor History June 3, 1913: IWW Marine Transport Workers Union in New Orleans continued their strike against United Fruit Company (now known as Chiquita) after wages were cut by five dollars per month. The strike, which started on June 2, turned deadly on June 13, when police opened fire on strikers trying to stop scabs from loading a ship, killing two of them. The IWW lost this strike. However, they were highly successful in other longshore strikes up and down the Eastern Seaboard. At this time, the IWW controlled all but 2 of the Philadelphia docks. Their multiracial union was led by Ben Fletcher, an African-American docker. Fletcher was also instrumental in organizing the Baltimore dockers.
You can read my longer article about Ben Fletcher here: https://michaeldunnauthor.com/2021/05/13/ben-fletcher-and-the-iww-dockers/
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #wobblies #union #strike #racism #NewOrleans #philadelphia #police #PoliceBrutality #acab #PoliceMurder #scab #antiracism #solidarity #BlackMastadon
Today in Labor History June 3, 1910: U.S. anarchists formed the Francisco Ferrer Association in Harlem, one year after the wrongful execution of anarchist educator Francisco Ferrer in Spain. The organization founded libertarian socialist schools throughout the U.S. based on the principles of Ferrer’s Modern Schools. The American Modern Schools were designed to counter the discipline, formality and regimentation of traditional American schools. Regular working-class people ran the schools for the children of workers. They sought to abolish all forms of authority, including educational, with the goal of creating a society based on free association and free thought. They emphasized learning by doing, as well as crafts and reading. They avoided rigid curricula, rote memorization and regimentation, as well as rewards and punishments. They also believed that learning was a life-long process that never ended. Therefore, parents and other adults were encouraged to participate in the operation of the schools and to attend evening and weekend lectures. Some of the speakers at these lectures included Clarence Darrow, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, Jack London, Upton Sinclair, and Man Ray. The schools also served as cultural centers for the promotion of revolutionary unionism, free speech, sexual liberation, and anti-militarism.
Read my full article on the anarchist roots of the Modern School Movement: https://www.fifthestate.org/archive/411-spring-2022/the-modern-school-movement/
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #ModernSchool #FranciscoFerrer #Revolution #union #school #education #children #liberation #FreeSpeech
Mainstream Media always gives us the update on impacts on the economy, businesses etc. while only looking at people whose houses burned to the ground... but the impact on everyone in the area is considerable - Great outline of the hits on working people from the fires in Nova Scotia.
#nsfires #climatechange #workingclass
Today in Labor History June 2, 1945: World War II: The segregated, all-Nisei U.S. 522nd Field Artillery Battalion stopped a death march from Dachau to the Austrian border. As a result, they saved several hundred prisoners. Ironically (and criminally), back in the states, most Nisei (Japanese-Americans) were living in concentration camps.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #WorldWar2 #ConcentrationCamps #dachau #antisemitism #AntiAsianHate #racism #fascism #nazis #nisei
Today in Labor History June 2, 1917: IWW Fifty IWW teamsters won a strike for higher wages and better conditions in Atkins, Iowa. On that same day, IWW macaroni workers called off their strike in Chicago due to interference by the AFL. And in Pittsburgh, also on this same day, Fifteen Wobblies were arrested on charges of conspiracy against the US and released.
#LaborHistory #WorkingClass #IWW #union #strike #wobblies #teamsters #conspiracy
PSA that Michelle Gallen's Big Girl Small Town is on sale in the US for Kindle this month, and it is vital reading for anyone interested in Irish, working class, neurodiverse literature. Not a clean read, but an absolutely vital one for sure. #reading #books #Ireland #WorkingClass
Today in Labor History June 1, 1929: A meeting of the Korean Anarchist Federation (KAF) was held in Peking in which it was decided to divert all resources outside Korea itself to Manchuria. Over 2 million Koreans were living in Manchuria at the time, and the KAF was a significant force. They were focused on providing mutual aid for all Koreans in Manchuria, establishing a society based on liberty and equality, in which resources were to be distributed "from each according to their ability, to each according to their needs". Their significance was short-lived, however, as the Japanese attacked from the south, while Stalinists attacked from the north. By 1931, many of the anarchist leaders were dead and the region was devastated.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #korea #china #manchuria #japan #stalin #communism #massacre #MutualAid
Today in Labor History June 1, 1916: The predominantly immigrant iron miners of the Mesabi Range, Minnesota, participated in a seemingly spontaneous strike in response to expensive housing and goods, long hours and poor pay. The group was led by radical Finns who quickly drew the attention and aid of IWW organizers. Wobbly organizers, including Carlo Tresca, Joe Schmidt, Frank Little, and later Joe Ettor and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn came to help local strike leaders draw up a list of demands which included an 8-hour day timed from when workers entered the mine until they were outside; a pay-scale based upon the day worked; pay-days twice monthly; immediate back-pay for hours worked upon severance; abolition of the Saturday night shift; abolition of the hated contract mining system. In the Contract Mining system, the bosses hired and paid “skilled” miners to do most of the mining. The contract miners then had to hire their own laborers and pay them out of their meagre wages. The contract miners were often native-born people, while the laborers were often immigrants. This created a racialized two-tiered system that divided the workers and made it harder to organize. The bosses would routinely offer the contract miners a minor concession to get them back to work, while offering the even more poorly paid laborers nothing, destroying their solidarity and ending the strike.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #union #strike #wildcat #Mesabi #iron #mining #solidarity #immigrant #ElizabethGurleyFlynn #FrankLittle #racism
Today in Labor History June 1, 1906: The bloody Cananea copper miners' strike began in Sonora, Mexico. The miners were demanding 5 pesos a day and an 8-hour workday, commensurate with what the U.S. citizens who were working side-by-side with them were earning. As many as 100 miners were killed in the strike, mostly by U.S. citizens working for the company. Although they were forced back to work without winning any of their demands, it contributed to the general unrest leading up to the Mexican Revolution.
The anarchist, Ricardo Flores Magón, along with members of his Partido Liberal Mexicana, organized a brigade of revolutionaries, who traveled from Arizona to the Cananea copper mines with the goal of exterminating all Americans employed there. The Arizona Rangers captured several of them. Magón and many others were extradited to Tombstone, Arizona, charged with violating U.S. neutrality laws, and imprisoned until 1910. After this, the Magonistas conquered parts of Baja California, including Tijuana, during the Mexican Revolution.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #cananea #mexico #copper #mining #anarchism
#RicardoFloresMagon #strike #massacre #mexico #Revolution
Today in Labor History June 1 is the day that U.S. labor law officially allows children under the age of 16 to work up to 8 hours per day between the hours of 7:00 am and 9:00 pm. Time is ticking away, Bosses. Have you signed up sufficient numbers of low-wage tykes to maintain production rates with your downsized adult staffs?
The reality is that child labor laws have always been violated regularly by employers and these violations have been on the rise recently. Additionally, many lawmakers are seeking to weaken existing, poorly enforced laws to make it even easier to exploit children. Over the past year, the number of children employed in violation of labor laws rose by 37%, while lawmakers in at least 10 states passed, or introduced, new laws to roll back the existing rules. Violations include hiring kids to work overnight shifts in meatpacking factories, cleaning razor-sharp blades and using dangerous chemical cleaners on the kills floors for companies like Tyson and Cargill. Particularly vulnerable are migrant youth who have crossed the southern U.S. border from Central America, unaccompanied by parents. https://www.epi.org/publication/child-labor-laws-under-attack/
Of course, what is happening in the U.S. is small potatoes compared with many other countries, where exploitation of child labor is routine, and often legal. Kids are almost always paid far less than adults, increasing the bosses’ profits. They are often more compliant than adults and less likely to form unions and resist. Bosses can get them to do dangerous tasks that adults can’t, or won’t, do, like unclogging the gears and belts of machinery. This was also the norm in the U.S., well into the 20th century. In my soon (I hope) to be released novel, “Anywhere But Schuylkill,” the protagonist, Mike Doyle, works as a coal cleaner in the breaker (coal crushing facility) of a coal mine at the age or 13. Many kids began work in the collieries before they were 10. They often were missing limbs and died young from lung disease. However, when the breaker bosses abused them, they would sometimes collectively chuck rocks and coal at them, or walk out, en masse, in wildcat strikes. And when their fathers, who worked in the pits, as laborers and miners, went on strike, they would almost always walk out with them, in solidarity.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #children #ChildLabor #exploitation #capitalism #nike #AnywhereButSchuylkill #coal #mining #fiction #novel #HisFic #HistoricalFiction @bookstadon
Today in Labor History May 31, 1913: The IWW Marine Transport Workers strike against United Fruit ships in New Orleans spread up the Atlantic coast. The Sailors Union of the Atlantic (AFL) joined them in New Orleans. On June 13, 1913, police officers and private security guards opened fire on the strikers, killing two and wounding several.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #NewOrleans #PoliceBrutality #PoliceMurder #police #acab #union #strike
Today in Labor History May 31, 1921: The Tulsa Race Riot. From May 31 through June 1, deputized whites killed more than 300 African Americans in the worst race riot in U.S. history. The violence began in response to a false report in the Tulsa Tribune accusing a black man of attacking a white girl in an elevator. The headline made the front page. However, there was an accompanying editorial that called for a lynching. White Tulsans went to the African American community of Greenwood (the Black Wall Street) and started shooting black people. They looted and burned 40 square blocks, destroying over 1,400 African American homes, hospitals, schools, and churches. Ten thousand became homeless and had to spend the winter of 1921 living in tents.
Many African American residents fought back, including veterans of World War One. This attempt at self-preservation prompted the deputized whites and National Guardsmen to arrest 6,000 black residents. Furthermore, they bombarded the community from the air in what was likely the first aerial bombardment of mainland U.S. residents. At least a dozen planes, some carrying police, circled the community and dropped burning balls of turpentine. They also shot at residents from the air. Many of the whites were members of the Klan, such as W. Tate Brady, who had also participated in the tarring and feathering of members of the Industrial Workers of the World in 1917.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #TulsaMassacre #riot #racism #pogrom #IWW #police #PoliceBrutality #massacre #greenwood #BlackWallStreet #kkk #klan
Today in Labor History May 30, 1972: The Angry Brigade went on trial in the UK for a series of bombings it had carried out. In total, the police blamed 25 separate bombings on the far-left militant group. Targets included banks, embassies, the BBC and the homes of some Members of Parliament. No one died from the bombings. The court acquitted four of the eight activists in the trial.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #AngryBrigade #bomb #police #communism
Today in Labor History May 30, 1937: “Memorial Day massacre:” Police attacked striking steelworkers, shooting many in the back, killing 10 and wounding 100, at the Republic Steel plant in South Chicago. 1937 – In what became known as the Memorial Day Massacre, police open fire on striking steelworkers at Republic Steel in South Chicago, killing 10 and wounding more than 160. The press called it the “Red Massacre,” as if to justify police violence and murder of working class people.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #MemorialDay #massacre #strike #union #PoliceBrutality #PoliceMurder #police #acab #chicago #steel
Today in Labor History May 29, 1941: Animators working for Walt Disney begin a five-week strike for recognition of their union, the Screen Cartoonists’ Guild. Disney’s initial response was to fire them. However, the union held fast and ultimately prevailed, winning union recognition. Still, dozens of Disney’s best animators left for good, joining other studios or, as in the case of Hank Ketchum (creator of Dennis the Menace), starting their own studio, United Productions. At the time of the strike, the Disney animators were working on Dumbo. The clowns in the film were a caricature of strikers, when they “hit the big boss for a raise.”
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #strike #union #disney #animation #hollywood #dumbo
Today in Labor History May 29, 1913: Rioting broke out at the Paris premiere of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring. The rioting occurred because of antagonism between the wealthy, in the box seats, who were offended by the “ugly, earthbound lurching” of the dancers and the strange avant-garde music, and the working-class Bohemians, who loved its mocking style and despised the elites in the boxes. However, some of the rioters threw objects at the orchestra, which tried to play on in spite of the disruption.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #paris #stravinsky #ballet #riot
Today in Labor History May 26, 1937: The "Little Steel" strike began in Ohio. Over 600 workers picketed at Republic’s mill in Cleveland, while virtually every one of its 6,500 workers abandoned the mill. The National Guard was used to crush the strike, first in Youngstown, and then in Canton, Massillon, Warren and Cleveland. They completely busted the strike by mid-July. Overall, 100,000 steel workers and miners working for the steel companies struck in seven states. Four days later, police killed 10 strikers at Republic Steel in Chicago, in the Memorial Day Massacre.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #union #strike #police #PoliceBrutality #PoliceMurder #acab #steel #chicago #MemorialDay
Today in Labor History May 26, 1937: Henry Ford unleashed his company goons on United Auto Workers organizers at the “Battle of the Overpass” near the River Rouge plant. General Motors and Chrysler signed collective bargaining agreements with the UAW in 1937, but Ford held out until 1942. Ford Motor Co. security guards attacked union organizers and supporters attempting to distribute literature outside the plant. The guards tried to destroy any photos showing the attack. However, a few survived and they inspired the Pulitzer committee to establish a prize for photography.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #strike #union #uaw #HenryFord #scabs #photography #pulitzer
Today in Labor History May 26, 1895: American photojournalist Dorothea Lange was born. She is best-known for her empathetic photographs of people during the Great Depression. However, she is also one of the first to document the suffering of Japanese Americans who were imprisoned during World War II.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #GreatDepression #poverty #ww2 #japanese #prison #ConcentrationCamp #journalism #photography #DorotheaLange
Today in Labor History May 26, 1851: Stevedores and longshoreman struck in San Francisco. This was the first documented longshore strike in California. They were demanding six dollars per day, which was a lot in those days. However, the gold rush caused massive inflation and six dollars was not much in light of that. They also were fighting for a nine-hour work day and one dollar per hour overtime. In the wake of this successful strike, organizers formed the Riggers’ and Stevedores’ Association.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #strike #SanFrancisco #stevedore #longshoremen #inflation #wages
Today in Labor History May 26, 1824: Women and girls led the first recorded factory strike in US history. 102 women and girls walked off the job at Slater Mill, in Pawtucket, and picketed their factory.
Two days prior, the owners had increased working hours by an hour per day with no additional pay. Additionally, they slashed the pay of power-loom weavers by 25%. Those affected were all women and girls aged 15 to 30. According to the bosses, the girls had already been earning “extravagant wages.”
The owners were caught off guard. They were not expecting a protest. Indeed, no U.S. factories had ever experienced a strike. Perhaps even more shocking, other workers and community members joined them in solidarity. They blockaded the mills and hurled rocks at the mansions of the owners. On the final day of the week-long strike, workers set one of the mills on fire. The next day, the owners agreed to negotiate and agreed on a compromise.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #strike #women #sabotage #girls #solidarity
Not only is the cost of #arts #education shifting the class balance of creatives in the UK, the #benefits system is working against #workingclass entrants to the various areas of creative & #cultural employment/activity
If we want a more vibrantly inclusive arts sector in this country we need to return to models that do not throw up barriers to creatives from families & households that do not have there resources to support them through their early years...
Today in Labor History May 25, 2020: Police murdered George Floyd in Minneapolis, setting off a worldwide wave of anti-police brutality protests.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #racism #PoliceMurder #police #acab #GeorgeFloyd #protest #blm #PoliceBrutality
Today in Labor History May 25, 1936: The notorious 11-month Remington Rand strike began. Remington Rand made office equipment, like typewriters. The federal union striking against them was affiliated with the AFL. The strike spawned the “Mohawk Valley (N.Y.) formula,” described by investigators as a corporate plan to discredit union leaders, frighten the public with the threat of violence, and use thugs to beat up strikers. The National Labor Relations Board termed the formula “a battle plan for industrial war.” No one died during the strike, but violence was rampant. Both sides fought with bricks, bottles, fists, clubs and other weapons. However, it was later revealed that many of the violent acts on the workers’ side were committed by agents provocateur, employed by the company. Remington Rand also hired large numbers of private security to protect their scabs and properties. Furthermore, local police were used to intimidate entire towns. Squads of cops armed with shotguns would stand guard at the edge of town, demanding identification from anyone wishing to enter or leave.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #union #strike #police #PoliceBrutality #acab #scabs
Today in Labor History May 24, 1990: Earth First! and IWW members Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney were bombed in Oakland, California. Police immediately arrested the victims, destroyed evidence, and went on a witch hunt of local activist groups like Earth First! and Seeds of Peace. FBI bomb investigators were on the scene almost instantaneously, as if they knew about it in advance. Later it was discovered that the FBI had held a police bomb training in California’s redwood country, near where Bari and Cherney lived, and that the bomb in their car resembled those used in the training. According to Bari, Four of the FBI agents who were on the scene of her bombing had been students at this training. In 2002, five years after Bari’s death from breast cancer, they won their civil suit against the law enforcement agencies for violating their Constitutional Rights.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #EarthFirst #JudiBari #fbi #PoliceBrutality #police #acab #oakland #bombing
Today in Labor History May 24, 1856: The Pottawatomie Massacre occurred in Kansas. On May 21 pro-slavery forces sacked Lawrence, Kansas, which had been settled by abolitionist “Free-Staters.” The next day, they attacked Senator Charles Sumner for speaking out against slavery in Kansas. In response, John Brown, and his supporters in the Pottawatomie Rifles, killed five pro-slavery settlers in front of their families. This led to a mini-civil war in Kansas that was a prelude to the national Civil War that would follow a few years later.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #slavery #abolition #JohnBrown #CivilWar #racism #BlackMastadon
Today in Labor History May 23, 2008: Labor folk singer and IWW member U. Utah Phillips (1935-2008) died.
Today in Labor History May 23, 2006: Angry garment workers in Bangladesh set fire to seven textile factories in and around the capital. They did it in response to the police killing of a worker during recent protests for better pay and working conditions.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #police #PoliceBrutality #acab #PoliceMurder #bangladesh
Today in Writing History May 22, 1967: Writer and activist Langston Hughes died. Hughes was a leader of the Harlem Renaissance and one of the early pioneers of Jazz Poetry. During the Civil Rights Movement, from 1942-1962, he wrote a weekly column for the black-owned Chicago Defender. His poetry and fiction depicted the lives and struggles of working-class African Americans. Much of his writing dealt with racism and black pride. Like many black artists and intellectuals of his era, he was attracted to communism as an alternative to the racism and segregation of America. He travelled to the Soviet Union and many of his poems were published in the CPUSA newspaper. He also participated in the movement to free the Scottsboro Boys and supported the Republican cause in Spain. He opposed the U.S. entering World War II and he signed a statement in support of Stalin’s purges.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #BlackHistory #racism #lgbtq #CivilRights #Harlem #renaissance #communism #soviet #poetry #writer @BlackMastodon @bookstadon
Today in Labor History May 22, 1968: New York police broke through the barricades at Columbia University, busting the student occupations there. As a result, 998 were arrested and over 200 injured. Students were demanding a black studies program and an end to military recruitment and ROTC on campus.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #columbia #PoliceBrutality #acab #antiwar #antiracism #student #protest
Today in Labor History May 20, 1916: 1,000 IWW workers on the Pennsylvania Railway went on strike for the eight-hour day in Baltimore, Maryland. At the time, the Penn was one of the largest corporations in the world. That same day, Another 1,200-1,500 Wobblies struck against Alaska Railway. In Detroit, Michigan, the IWW won its strike at Kelsey Wheel Works. They won the eight-hour day and a raise. And the IWW also won their strike at Bronson’s and Cox’s camp in St. Maries, Idaho.
Today in Labor History May 20, 1911: Anarchist Magonistas published a proclamation calling for the peasants to take collective possession of the land in Baja California. They had already defeated government forces there. Members of the IWW traveled south to help them.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #anarchism #magon #mexico #Revolution #BajaCalifornia
Let's not forget those who came before them and helped pave the way:
Today in Labor History May 16, 2007: Baristas at the Starbucks in East Grand Rapids announced their membership in the IWW Starbucks Workers Union. Starbucks was and is notorious for their poor treatment of workers. The NLRB slapped them with numerous anti-labor violations and forced them to settle the Grand Rapids dispute in October.
Let's not forget those who helped pave the way:
April 10, 1997: Exotic dancers at San Francisco’s Lusty Lady, ratified their first-ever union contract. Thus they became the first successfully unionized sex business. (Pacers, in San Diego, had unionized a few years earlier. However, they had an open shop, allowing management to recruit new, non-union employees. Consequently, they were able to decertify the union.) Lusty Lady later became a worker-owned cooperative and a member of NoBAWC (the network of Bay Area Workers Collectives).
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #SexWork #WorkerCollective #union #NOBAWC #LustyLady
Today in Labor History May 19, 1989: Trinidadian Marxist historian and journalist C.L.R. James died. James was the author of The Black Jacobins (1938), Breaking a Boundary (1963), numerous articles and essays on class and race antagonism, West Indian self-determination, cricket, Marxism, & aesthetics. In 1933, he published the pamphlet The Case for West-Indian Self Government. He was a champion of Pan-Africanism and a member of the Friends of Ethiopia, an organization opposed to fascism and the Italian conquest of Ethiopia. He also wrote a play about the Haitian Revolution, Toussaint L’Ouverture, the Story of the Only Successful Slave Revolt in History. Paul Robeson starred in the 1936 British production.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #CLRJames #marxism #trinidad #WestIndies #haiti #revolution #history #books #BlackMastadon #author #writing @bookstadon
Today in Labor History May 18, 1979: An Oklahoma jury ruled in favor of the estate of atomic worker Karen Silkwood. Kerr-McGee Nuclear Company was ordered to pay $505,000 in actual damages and $10 million in punitive damages for negligence leading to Silkwood’s plutonium contamination. On appeal, the court reduced the settlement to a pitiful $5,000, the estimated value of her property losses. In 1984, the Supreme Court restored the original verdict, but Kerr-McGee again threatened to appeal. Ultimately, Silkwood’s family settled out of court for $1.38 million and the company never had to admit any wrongdoing.
Silkwood first started working at Kerr-McGee in 1972. She joined the Oil, Chemical & Atomic Workers union and participated in a strike. After the strike, her comrades elected her to the union’s bargaining committee. She was the first woman to attain that status at Kerr-McGee. In this role, one of her duties was to investigate health and safety issues. Not surprisingly, she discovered numerous violations, including exposure of workers to contamination. The union accused Kerr-McGee of falsifying inspection records, manufacturing faulty fuel rods and other safety violations. After testifying to the Atomic Energy Commission, Silkwood discovered that her own body and home were contaminated with radiation. Her body contained 400 times the legal limit for plutonium contamination and she was expelling contaminated air from her lungs. Her house was so contaminated they had to destroy much of her personal property.
Later, she decided to go public with documentation proving the company’s negligence. She left a meeting with union officials in order to meet a New York Times journalist. She brought a binder and packet of documents supporting her allegations with her. However, she never made it, dying in a suspicious car crash. The documents were never found. Some journalist believe she was rammed from behind by another vehicle. Investigators noted damage to the read of her car that would be consistent with this hypothesis. She had also received death threats shortly before her death. However, no one has yet substantiated the claims of foul play.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #silkwood #union #radioactive #contamination #murder
Today in Labor History May 18, 1814: Russian anarchist militant and philosopher Mikhail Bakunin was born. In Paris, in the 1840’s, he met Marx and Proudhon, who were early influences on him. He was later expelled from France for opposing Russia’s occupation of Poland. In 1849, the authorities arrested him in Dresden for participating in the Czech rebellion of 1848. They deported him back to Russia, where the authorities imprisoned him and then exiled him to Siberia in 1857. However, he escaped through Japan and fled to the U.S. and then England.
In 1868, he joined the International Working Men’s Association, leading the rapidly growing anarchist faction. He argued for federations of self-governing workplaces and communes to replace the state. This was in contrast to Marx, who argued for the state to help bring about socialism. In 1872, they expelled Bakunin from the International. Bakunin had an influence on the IWW, Noam Chomsky, Peter Kropotkin, Herbert Marcuse, Emma Goldman, and the Spanish CNT and FAI.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #bakunin #IWW #cnt #chomsky #kropotkin #EmmaGoldman #marx #rebellion #Revolution
Morning, word people!
Today's favorite phrasing: "He's got deck plating for a skull."
Yes, I'm back at work. Watered my hanging pots and hibiscus, put the last of the songbird mix into the feeder (sorry, kids, I need to get more later!), took stock of what else I need to restock. Washed my hair. Now, to finish this editing pass.
Today in Labor History May 17, 1900: Following the siege of Mafeking, during the Second Boer War, over 27,000 Boer women and children died in the world's first concentration camps. The Spanish had actually created similar death camps in Cuba during the Ten Year’s War (1868-1878). However, the death camps in South Africa were the first to be called concentration camps. Additionally, the Boer War concentration camp system was the first time an entire nation had been targeted. During the war, Mahatma Gandhi and 800 Indian slaves started the Ambulance Corps to serve the British.
#LaborHistory #WorkingClass #SouthAfrica #Gandhi #slavery #ConcentrationCamp #women #children
"Working class sovereignty: the first communist network state is already here."
From @theblockchainsocialist. Love the case study and example of #coop #cooperative business and overlapping, interconnected networks of people and organizations that create the possibility of this place.
#sovereignty #workingclass #organizing #communist #community #commons
Today in Labor History May 2, 1933: In one of his first acts after coming to power, Adolf Hitler abolished all labor unions. Storm troopers occupied union offices across Germany. Union leaders were arrested, beaten, tortured and imprisoned, or sent to concentration camps. In the coming months, thousands more communists, anarchists and labor activists were arrested and murdered.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #union #communism #anarchism #nazis #massacre #ConcentrationCamp #hitler #fascism
Another version of that #Meme that seems more accurate lately.
Shills for the rich corporate owners help to stoke divisiveness between members of the working classes (including both working-class White men and "others" such as immigrants, LGBTQ people, etc...).
That's why certain politicians and news orgs continually provoke fear and distrust of "others." It keeps the working classes from uniting and demanding better working conditions and higher pay.
May 1, is #MayDay, aka #InternationalWorkersDay, a day celebrated by those who work for a living around the globe. However, the US does not officially recognize International Workers' Day. Why not?
"U.S. resistance to celebrate... International Workers' Day... stems from a resistance to emboldening worldwide working-class unity"
Keeping the working classes divided keeps the workers under the control of the corporate owners.
Some May Day humor for you courtesy of Frankie Boyle -
“One of the reasons middle class people don’t understand the working class is that they often lie to them during job interviews
When they’re asked,
“Where do you see yourself ideally in five years time?”
They rarely reply,
“Standing in the ruins of this building pissing on your burning skull.”.
May Day is perhaps the only major holiday that was self-created and actualized by a mass movement of the proletariat - the #workingclass, the poor, the too proud to take it & not created by a government, church, or corporate goons.
Historian Eric Hawbsbawm said this
"The priests have their festivals,the Moderates have their festivals. The First of May is the festival of the #workers of the entire world."
Workers own this day. Take it back!
#labor #MayDay #proletariat #internationalWorkersDay
MayDay 🤓 On May 1, 1886, more than 300,000 workers (40,000 in Chicago alone) from 13,000 business walked out of their jobs across the country. In the following days, more workers joined and the number of strikers grew to almost 100,000. This soon INTERNATIONAL protest for BETTER working conditions (Not good/fair- just better) and a maximum 8 hour working day.
2 days later (May 3rd) Police attacked strikers at McCormick Harvesting Machine Company killing one and injuring many, the following day a peaceful rally against police brutality was winding down when armed police who had gathered to disperse the peaceful crowd were hit with a dynamite bomb thrown by an unidentified individual killing 7 police. Police opened fire on the protesters killing eight and wounding an unknown number (30-40?)
The Chicago Eight (outspoken leaders of labour movements) were arrested and convicted without evidence in a trial internationally condemned as illegal. sentenced to death (despite 6 not having been at the initial protest) 4 were executed and one committed suicide prior to the trial being overturned and their pardon.
This injustice and the global response led to our getting an eight hour working day.
here is some interesting info including the battles fought when a statue was raised to police killed in the original 'affair' #MayDay #Anarchy #Anarchists #Protest #PoliceBrutality #Unions #History #WorkingClass
Today in labor history April 30, 1871: A mob massacred more than 100 Apaches at Camp Grant, Arizona. The mob included 48 Mexican Americans and 92 Tohono O’odham. Most of the Apaches that were killed were women and children. The Apaches had already surrendered and placed themselves under U.S. protection when the attack occurred. As a result, the Apache, and their Yavapai allies, launched a series of attacks against the U.S. Their attacks continued into 1875. Descendants of those massacred are currently fighting against Resolution Copper, a subsidiary of Rio Tinto, to block mining on the massacre site—the third largest copper deposit in the world. John McCain and Jeff Flake authored the legislation that opened the site to mining. Seventh-day Adventists, the Islam and Religious Freedom Action Team of the Religious Freedom Institute, Mormans, the Christian Legal Society, Jewish Coalition for Religious Liberty, and the Sikh Coalition, have joined together to support the Apache and filed legal briefs for them. Rio Tinto is responsible for some of the worst environmental devastation on the planet, union busting, and for the mass murder of indigenous environmental and labor activists around the world. They also have a history of collaborating with fascists, including Franco, in Spain.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #massacre #indigenous #genocide #RioTinto #copper #mining #union #fascism #racism #pollution
Today in labor history April 30 1886: 50,000 workers in Chicago were on strike. 30,000 more joined in the next day. The strike halted most of Chicago’s manufacturing. On May 3rd, the Chicago cops killed four unionists. Activists organized a mass public meeting and demonstration in Haymarket Square on May 4. During the meeting, somebody threw a bomb at the cops. The explosion and subsequent gunfire killed seven cops and four civilians. Nobody ever identified the bomber. None of the killer cops was charged. However, the authorities started arresting anarchists throughout Chicago.
Ultimately, they tried and convicted eight anarchist leaders in a kangaroo court. The men were: August Spies, Albert Parsons, Adolph Fisher, George Engel, Louis Lingg, Michael Schwab, Samuel Felden and Oscar Neebe. Only two of the men were even present when the bomb was thrown. The court convicted seven of murder and sentenced them to death. Neebe was give fifteen years. Parson’s brother testified at the trial that the real bomb thrower was a Pinkerton agent provocateur. This was entirely consistent with the Pinkertons modus operandi. They used the agent provocateur, James McParland, to entrap and convict the Molly Maguires. As a result, twenty of them were hanged and the Pennsylvania mining union was crushed. McParland also tried to entrap WFM leader, Big Bill Haywood, for the murder of Idaho Governor Frank Steunenberg. Steunenberg had crushed the WFM strike in 1899, the same one in which the WFM had blown up a colliery. However, Haywood had Clarence Darrow representing him. And Darrow proved his innocence.
On November 11, 1887, they executed Spies, Parson, Fisher and Engel. They sang the Marseillaise, the revolutionary anthem, as they marched to the gallows. The authorities arrested family members who attempted to see them one last time. This included Parson’s wife, Lucy, who was also a significant anarchist organizer and orator. In 1905, she helped cofound the IWW. Moments before he died, Spies shouted, "The time will come when our silence will be more powerful than the voices you strangle today." And Engel and Fischer called out, "Hurrah for anarchism!" Parsons tried to speak, but was cut off by the trap door opening beneath him.
Workers throughout the world protested the trial, conviction and executions. Prominent people spoke out against it, includin Clarence Darrow, Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw, and William Morris. The Haymarket Affair inspired thousands to join the anarchist movement, including Emma Goldman. And it is the inspiration for International Workers’ Day, which is celebrated on May 1st in nearly every country in the world except the U.S.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #anarchism #haymarket #LucyParsons #IWW #EmmaGoldman #strike #union #8HourDay #PoliceBrutality #KillerCops #prison #DeathPenalty #Pinkertons
Today in Labor History April 24, 1999: The International Longshoremen’s and Warehousemen’s Union shut down all West Coast shipping in solidarity with Mumia Abu-Jamal.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #MumiaAbuJamal #prison #journalism #FreeSpeech #police #union #solidarity #ilwu
Today in Labor History April 10, 1947: FBI agents visited Ronald Reagan (then president of the Screen Actors Guild) and his wife Jane Wyman, accusing them of belonging to a communist front group. To prove his loyalty, Reagan agreed to become a secret informer and went on to have a long and illustrious career as an anti-communist.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #communism #RonaldReagan #anticommunism #fbi #union #ScreenActorsGuild
Today In Labor History April 7, 1947: The National Federation of Telephone Workers (NFTW) launched the first nationwide strike against AT&T and Bell. 350,000 telephone workers, mostly women switchboard operators, walked off the job. Both the AFL and the CIO supported the strike, hoping to bring the telephone workers into their fold. This support provided extra strike funds to help the workers survive their time off the job. By mid-May, 37 of the 39 member unions had won new contracts with raises. NFTW became the Communications Workers of America later that year.
Today in Labor History April 6, 1907: IWW Mill Workers in Aberdeen, WA won a wage increase of 25 cents per day.
And dye shops in Paterson, NJ. granted their workers a one-dollar wage increase after pressure from the IWW.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #DirectAction #strike #wages
Today In Labor History April 4, 1968: James Earl Ray assassinated Martin Luther King at the Lorraine Hotel, Memphis, Tennessee.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #CivilRights #MartinLutherKing #racism #assassination
Today In Labor History April 3, 1917: After the U.S. declared war, sailors, escorted by police, destroyed the IWW building in Kansas City. The action inspired similar attacks in Detroit, Duluth and other towns that had a large IWW presence.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #union #PoliceBrutality #antiwar
Today In Labor History April 3, 1948: Cheju Massacre in Korea. Between 1948 and 1949, one of the 20th century’s least known genocides occurred. On the island of Cheju-do, 30,000 civilians were massacred (10% of the island’s population) by the South Korean army, Cheju-do police and the U.S. military. However, the governor of Cheju told American intelligence that the real number was closer to 60,000. Another 30,000 people fled to Japan. The massacre was designed to suppress a worker uprising and General Strike.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #GeneralStrike #communism #Jeju #Cheju #massacre #genocide #korea
Today in Labor History April 1, 1976: Surrealist artist, Max Ernst, died. In addition to his artwork, he was an anti-Fascist, who was literally chased out of France by the Gestapo. He opposed Stalin’s Moscow trials. And much of his art had anti-Fascist and anti-Stalinist themes. He produced his painting “Fireside Angel” (or “Angel of the Hearth and Home”) after the Spanish Republicans were defeated by the Fascists. Ernst said, “Now this was naturally an ironic title for a sort of ungainly beast that tramples down and destroys everything in its path. It was the impression I had at the time of what was likely to happen in the world, and I was right.”
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #surrealism #MaxErnst #fascism #antifascism #communism #gestapo #stalin
3/15 The writer described his reaction to a book of the same title as: "...a sympathetic yet tragic story of how race has been a defining characteristic in U.S. culture and how the race question has also plagued the white #WorkingClass in this country.... a story of how the Irish exchanged their greenness for whiteness, and collaborated with the dominant white culture to continue the oppression of African Americans."
Browse important historical events in the continued struggle to build a better world for all workers on this interactive map from @workingclasshistory ✊
#labor #workers #WorkingClass #WorkersRights #history #events #map
I don't know how people think capitalism can exist without a massive bureaucracy keeping track of who owns what and enforcing the material inequality that results.
#capitalism #WorkingClass #propaganda #PsyOps #labor #capital #strike
Today in Labor History March 18, 1834: The authorities sentenced Six farm laborers from Tolpuddle, Dorset, England to be transported to Australia for forming a trade union. In April, 30,000 workers marched in support of the deportees. The Tolpuddle struggle, which began in 1832, marked the beginning of British trade unionism. The workers were fighting for an end to the “Combination Laws,” which outlawed the formation of unions. The Tolpuddle Martyrs were pardoned in 1836, thanks to the popular protests.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #Tolpuddle #martyrs #union #britain #australia #deportation
Change has come to the #UAW! Militant challenger Shawn Fain has defeated business-friendly incumbent Ray Curry. And with contracts at the Big 3 automakers set to expire soon, things could get interesting.
Yesterday in Labor History March 16, 1945: British bombers destroyed ninety percent of Würzburg, Germany in only 20 minutes by, resulting in over 5,000 deaths.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #wwii #civilians #massacre #bombing #WarCrimes
#Trump won in 2016 because the #Democrats underestimated #WorkingClass dissatisfaction with the status quo and assumed they had labor in the bag. It's pretty clear they're making the same mistake again. #Biden forced a contract down the throats of the rail workers while cynically claiming to be the most #labor-friendly administration ever. Then the #EastPalestine derailment happened, and the #Republicans have seized on that to make it look like the administration cares more about #Ukraine than about people or the environment. Meanwhile, the Democrats smugly think that working class voters will somehow see through the "lies" while completely ignoring the underlying truths.
Trump didn't announce because he wants to, or expects to, be president again. He announced to win concessions from the #GOP, in particular a pardon, and possibly bailouts for his businesses. I suspect, but cannot prove, that the Republicans' attacks on the #SVB #bailout have something to do with this: when they win in 2024 and start bailing out a bunch of businesses in red states, they can claim it's only fair because of the Democrats' own "biased" #bailouts.
Trump is going to drop out of the race for the Republican nomination early, if not before the first primary. He'll throw his support to the front runner, probably #DeSantis. Then he can claim he helped them win, which will satisfy his ego. He'll get his pardon, which the Republicans are already lubing us up for by claiming the investigations and prosecutions are politically motivated. They may even position the bailouts of his businesses as "reparations".
And here's the thing: if I'm wrong and the Democrats behave as if I'm right, they'll be fine. If I'm right and they behave as if I'm wrong, we're all screwed.
Today in Labor History March 9, 1879: Anarchist militant and IWW organizer, Carlo Tresca, was born. Tresca was an outspoken opponent of fascism in Germany and Italy and of Soviet Communism. He was one of the main organizers of the Patterson Silk Strike. He was assassinated in 1943 by an unknown assailant, presumably a fascist or the Mafia. Some believe the Soviets killed him in retaliation for his criticism of Stalin. The most recent research suggests it was the Bonanno crime family, in response to his criticism of the mafia and Mussolini.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #union #strike #anarchism #communism #paterson #mafia #stalin #soviet #fascism #mussolini
Today in Labor History March 3, 1991: An amateur video caught LAPD beating Rodney King. Four officers were tried for excessive force. The jury acquitted three and reached no verdict for the fourth. Within hours of the acquittals, riots erupted in cities across the U.S. The biggest was the Los Angeles riots, which lasted six days and killed 63 people, and injured 2,383. The National Guard, Army and Marines came in and ultimately quashed the riots.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #PoliceBrutality #RodneyKing #riots #lapd #acab
Today in Labor History March 2, 1997: Earth First! Activist and IWW labor organizer Judi Bari died. Bari, and her comrade, Darryl Cherney, survived a terrorist bomb attack in Oakland, CA in 1990. The police and FBI immediately blamed her for the bombing, claiming that she was the terrorist and that the bomb was intended for logging companies. They arrested her and handcuffed her to her hospital bed. Bari and Cherney were eventually exonerated and won a settlement for the FBI’s role in violating their civil liberties. The bomber was never caught. In addition to their organizing and activism, Bari and Cherney were also musical composers and performers. Their song, “Will the Fetus Be Aborted,” (to the tune of “Will the Circle Be Unbroken,”) was performed by Jello Biafra and Mojo Nixon on their Prairie Home Invasion album.
#LaborHistory #WorkingClass #IWW #EarthFirst #JudiBari #fbi #terrorism #bombing #police
Today in Labor History March 1, 1907: The Industrial Workers of the World struck sawmills in Portland, Oregon. Earlier in the year, they held a demonstration to support Big Bill Haywood, who was on trial on bogus murder charges for the assassination of former Idaho Governor Frank Stuenenberg.
#WorkingClass #LaborHistory #IWW #portland #union #strike #BigBillHaywood
@adamasnemesis @mekkaokereke get and read if you have not already, The Working Class Majority by Prof Zweig won’t I was lucky enough to have while doing my economics undergrad at SBU #Economics #WorkingClass