Monday, September 3, 2012

Happy Labor Day

There is always a reason why you set apart a day as a holiday.  The word itself comes from the religious practice of setting a day apart as a Holy Day.  In the case of Labor Day, it is a day of remembrance, it is a day to consider the struggles of the common man to push the standards of living forward against the robber barons of the last century (our current 1% crowd) and against their purchased legislators.

Sound familiar?

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation's strength, freedom, and leadership -- the American worker. 

No matter what the Tea-Tards and the Republicants want you to believe, it isn't about the 1% and the "We Built It" motto, because they didn't.

"Labor Day differs in every essential from the other holidays of the year in any country," said Samuel Gompers, founder and longtime president of the American Federation of Labor. "All other holidays are in a more or less degree connected with conflicts and battles of man's prowess over man, of strife and discord for greed and power, of glories achieved by one nation over another. Labor devoted to no man, living or dead, to no sect, race, or nation."

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. 

So while you're out there grilling your burgers, chicken, pork, or other meats, give a moment to pause and think about the American (and international) workers who have fought to put that food on your table.  Those who have fought for things as basic as the 40 hour work week, child labor laws, the rights to a safe workplace, and many other labor laws that are now simply thought of as so basic a right that they're forgotten.

I could go on, but too many folks would shrug and hit another link.  If you're still with me, those quoted paragraphs and a short history of how Labor Day had actually came about are on this link at About.Com.

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