Monday, May 1, 2006

A New May Day

The rest of the developed world (apart from the US, Canada and South Africa) are celebrating May Day. This international holiday associated with workers passes without notice in the United States. Of course we have our own Labor Day in safely set in September. It comes and goes in an innocuous picnic fashion each year.

Strangely, the association of May Day and Labor had its roots here in the United States. The May 1st date is used because in 1884 the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions demanded an eight-hour workday in the United States, to come in effect as of May 1, 1886. This led to the general strike in and the Chicago Haymarket Riot of 1886, but eventually also in the official sanction of the eight-hour workday. Today, a large part of the world recognizes what happened in Chicago while we ignore our past.

Perhaps it is significant that Latinos chose May 1st to be the day without immigrants. I am not sure I will be directly affected, but I see so many Latino workers doing jobs that no native wants. I am sure it is going to make a difference. Of course, Indiana's own Congressman John Hostettler has asked INS to check into McDonald's and other large companies to see if they have hired any illegal immigrants.


Blogger Hugh said...

"jobs that no native wants". Does anyone really "want" to work on the line at McDonald's?

May 01, 2006  
Blogger indymtgpro77 said...

i want to hire a illegal immigrant to make my drinks and do my laundry.

May 01, 2006  
Blogger Smartypants said...

In Texas, I'll be very interested to see if we are able to function at all today.

May 01, 2006  

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