For many years, the middle class has been forced into full, often humiliating retreat. Our standard of living and quality of life has taken a crippling hit.
That is the bad news. The good news is that the injury, grievous and slow-healing as it is is not fatal. Now is the right time for us to fight back with a revived militancy. Unions have run with the torch for generations and have enabled the middle class to make progress for much of that time. They are in the best position to carry on today.
Many people have been suckered into the myth that unions are part of the problem, not the solution. They have been tricked into believing that union members prosper at the expense of the middle class, when history shows that the direct correlation between the ascendency of the middle class and the rise of unions. The enemies of unions are the same folks who fiercely oppose the rights of all other employees.
They invariably side with bosses, no matter how blatantly arbitrary or flagrantly unfair their actions. They are foes of a living wage, due process, family medical leave protection, paid sick and vacation days or any other mandated job security safeguards. And they will never support any voluntary safeguards.
These anti-union, anti-middle class elements cloak themselves in patriotism, but they are the most unpatriotic of all Americans and in this sense they are far less American than people of undocumented status. They favor privatizing the military, the penal system, education, the postal service and everything else.
With hellish fury they fought Social Security, Medicare and every other act of mercy ever legislatively proposed as a safety net for Americans in agony.
Are you a patriot? Then regardless of your economic bracket, professional title or credential or position in the social strata, your personal interests are union, middle class and American interests. Defend them.