May 1. — Sing praise to the working women and men — across the world.
May Day is an auspicious day worldwide for its historical importance, as well as political impact — especially to bring the working class men, women, and families together. It has won many battles for the ordinary people, and people who are now blasting labor unions are actually reaping fruits of the glorious workers’ struggle.
May Day has its origin in Chicago when workers’ struggle for an 8-hour workday saw riot, police violence, and massacre. Yet, unlike the rest of the world, we don’t observe the International Labor Day here in USA, because both the U.S. ruling class and detached-from-global-unity labor unions refused, rejected, and condemned any movement with an iota of socialism.
Socialism and the concept of equality, let alone Marxism, is denigrated here (without any analysis), especially by media, the two big political parties, elite academia, and Wall Street. The wonderful, gallant history of labor unions in America is history that nobody reads anymore. Few people care to know about great labor leaders such as Emma Goldman, Hellen Keller, or Eugene Debbs. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his last speech just before his assassination to a group of striking sanitation workers in Memphis, Tennessee.
That tradition of distorting and destroying history in America has not changed even today. Republicans found a racist, lying man to be elected president, Democrats found a lying, detached-from-reality woman to be their candidate, and New York Times and CNN trashed Bernie Sanders, who talked about equality, real-life issues of the 99%, and proposed peace and justice for all. AFL-CIO sang praises for Trump, who wants to get rid of unions! Truly, this is the era of Post-Truth, or as I call it, Post-Rationalism.
Until U.S. workers and labor unions came out of this pathetic hegemony and found their own political platform, labor unions will keep declining, and the American 1% will destroy mankind.
I sing praise to May Day, the International Workers’ Day.
Partha Banerjee (a labor educator in New York)