Sunday, February 11, 2007

Which side are you on?

(Originally posted Labor Day 2006)

Happy Labor Day!

It’s been about 85 years since Florence Reece wrote the lyrics to “Which Side Are You On?” in response to the way her family was harassed for her husband’s involvement in a coal mining union.

Back in the 1930’s, her Mama Reece's introduction to the labor movement came when her home was ransacked by the sheriff and deputies of Harlan County, waving guns at her and her seven children as they looked for her labor organizing husband.

Today, we have a much different labor battle going on. Families are in crisis trying to make ends meet with skyrocketing health care costs, stagnant wages, high gas and energy prices, and inadequate and expensive child care options. And it seems like the whole idea behind unions…organizing and banding together…just isn’t alive and well in America any more.

I hope the labor movement makes a major comeback. I hope we get better vacation benefits, maternity and paternity leave, flex time, affordable quality day care, and countless other improvements in work conditions that would help families and the community.

On your day off, check out Moms Rising, the official site of the Motherhood Manifesto and learn more about the situation we are all in together. Truly paranoia inducing. Where’s my hat?

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