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All People Matter

Facts About May Day—I’d Be Fine With A Big General Strike, But I Don’t See It Happening

HAPPY MAY DAY!

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HAPPY MAY DAY!

File:Alabamamaypole1910.jpg

MAYDAY! MAYDAY!

(Photo above by Martin Hartland)

Tomorrow is May Day.

Here are some facts about May Day from The Huffington Post

“Although it’s not recognized in the U.S. or Canada, May Day is one of the biggest bank holidays elsewhere in the world.

While it conjures up images of maypoles and folk dances, the holiday has gone through a radical transformation over the centuries. Originally a pagan celebration called Beltane (which translates roughly to “day of fire”), May Day is observed as “Labor Day” or “International Workers’ Day” in many countries, and organized street demonstrations and marches by working people and their labor unions are common.”

Here is an explanation of different ways May Day is observed around the world.

May Day is a day of working people’s empowerment in much of the world.

There are protests taking place in the U.S. this year on May Day. Many of these protests are taking place in conjunction with the Occupy movement.

There has in some cases been talk of a “general strike” and other dramatic actions.

While I’ve not at all given up on Occupy, I’ve seen nothing to back up the most aggressive claims of what will take place on May Day here in U.S.

I’ll be quite happy to be proven wrong— Yet until that time I’m not going to promote stuff that is way beyond any reasonable expectation of what will really take place.

There are always plenty of solid reasons to be hopeful. Big talk that leads to small actions does not promote hope.

April 30, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | | 1 Comment

Labor Day History & Links—All Work Merits Respect

Labor Day for 2009 is Monday, September 7.

All work merits respect. We should treat other working people with respect. How we treat other working people is a mirror of the extent to which we respect ourselves.

( The picture above was taken by Danny Cornelissen for the portpictures.nl website.)

Here is a history of Labor Day from the U.S. Department of Labor. 

From that history–

“Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”

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Here is the web home of the AFL-CIO.

Here is an American labor movement history timeline from the AFL-CIO.  

Here are a number of women’s labor history links from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. It is a very good list.

Here are black labor history links from AFSCME.

The history of labor in the United States is your history. Work is the time and effort of their lives. We need the wages we earn at work to be able to live decent lives. 

There is also an International Labor Day.  International Labor Day, or May Day, marks the Haymarket Riot in Chicago in 1886. Please click here to learn more about the Haymarket Riots and the Haymarket Trial. 

Respect for working people involves understanding that the goods you buy must be sold for a fair price if the people who make and sell those goods are to receive a fair wage and good benefits. Selling these goods at a fair price also helps your employer stay in business.

Respect for working people does not stop at the American border. Cheap goods we purchase in America are often produced by underpaid and poorly treated workers in other nations.

Labor Day is, for many at least, a time to get a break from work.  It is also a time to reflect upon what it means to be a working person in a nation and a world where the rights of workers—to they extent they exist at all—are under ceaseless strain.   

( Photo above by Holger Hubbs.)

September 1, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy May Day!

HAPPY MAY DAY!

File:1maj2006soc.dem.sthlm.jpg

HAPPY MAY DAY!

File:Alabamamaypole1910.jpg

MAYDAY! MAYDAY!

Photo above by Martin Hartland

Here is an explanation of the different ways May Day is observed around the world.

May 1, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment