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Hiring the homeless to picket?

I had tears of both laughter and sorrow in my eyes reading this lament by Bill Fletcher, a long time union radical, concerning the sad state the American labor unions have sunk to when they have to hire the homeless to picket for them. Actually, even worse is when they hire professional organizers to get whipped around the country from one organizing drive to the next, instead of local workers in the industry/ company trying to be organized? So why just point out the Carpenters Union alone for having lost its way?

And a note aside…. Me and a comrade doing antiwar street vigils together, out of desperation also began to playfully ponder the idea of doing the same. We knew that we’d never be able to get the already paid (why? I don’t know) staff of the Justice and Peace Commission to ever leave their enclosed walls and to publicly carry a sign against the war on a street corner. They can’t even get themselves together to drag themselves over to Toons Video to do such with the director of that group (and proprietor of that store), a whole 30 minutes, a Monday or two during the year. These ‘leaders’ seem to me, much like the ‘leaders’ of the Carpenters Union. Sedentary.

The homeless have more work ethic perhaps? And more sense of solidarity with their membership, than the ‘leaders’ over at the Justice and Peace pavilion. The Homeless for Peace! The Homeless for Unions! If we wait on the middle class radicals to get their act together, we’ll be waitin ’till Hell freeezes over. Tears…. Easier to hire the homeless than to get the ‘Peace’ crowd to do that work. Less aggravation, too!

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