LOS ANGELES – The labor movement reacted with outrage to George W. Bush’s decision to invoke the unionbusting Taft-Hartley Act to end an employer lockout of the West Coast International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU). It was the first use of the law against the union since Richard Nixon invoked it in 1971 to interrupt a strike.
NEW YORK – Unions and their members are speaking out against war with Iraq while taking steps to form stronger ties with the peace movement. Michael Letwin, president of the Association of Legal Aid Attorneys, United Auto Workers Local 2325, told the World strongly worded resolutions denouncing the war are being adopted in union halls across the country.
Sid Taylor’s confidence in the working class was contagious. His warmth and enthusiasm, big smile and strong handshake let workers know immediately he was on their side. He would say, “If times are hard and you’re not sure what to do, visit a worker.”
The Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies at the University of Washington has launched a new web-based resource: “Communism in Washington State – History and Memory Project.”
“Wheel about, turn about Do jis so An’ ebery time I wheel about I jump Jim Crow!” This little ditty was expropriated from a Black performer in the South by Daddy Rice, a white entertainer, in 1828. Performing in blackface and dressed in tattered clothes, Rice took this version of black man imitating the hifalutin ways of white folks, put it in his minstrel act, and made a fortune.
NEWARK – Community leaders, artists and activists are rallying to block efforts to remove renowned poet, playwright and activist Amiri Baraka as New Jersey’s poet laureate. Gov. James McGreevey, after recently appointing him to the post, called for his resignation after an outcry over his poem “Somebody Blew Up America.”
The Ulster Unionist Council’s decision to bow before the party’s rejectionist wing and fire a missile into the heart of the 1998 British-Irish Good Friday agreement, while disappointing for supporters of the deal, can hardly be said to have come as a surprise.
Back when the first Gulf War was being debated, I gave a speech at an anti-war rally in Charleston, Illinois. A university student interrupted to heckle. I stopped and looked at him: “You look like you could carry a gun. If you think this war is such a great idea, why don’t you sign up for it?” He didn’t have an answer. But it wasn’t merely a rhetorical question.
The following are excerpts from remarks to a town hall meeting at the Wisconsin State Capitol on Sept. 30. Gilman, a highly decorated U.S. Army veteran, began his remarks by explaining his experiences in World War II, where he participated in the Allied offensive against Hitler two days before D-Day, and experienced first-hand the inhumanity of war.
New Jersey voters had good news last week. The good news was that Robert Torricelli, one of the worst Democratic Senators in the Northeast, had dropped his reelection bid. Besides having a record of aggressively supporting the Reagan contra war against the people of Nicaragua, Torricelli was hopelessly compromised by a corruption scandal that doomed him to defeat.