Labor Day Irony

by Chris | September 3rd, 2010

I find it ironic that America celebrates Labor Day by taking a long weekend off work.  Perhaps it’s just a way to enjoy the symbolic final weekend before the fall begins and kids return to school.  Perhaps it’s just an excuse to blow off a little steam knowing that we now need to buckle down and have a profitable 4th quarter of the year.  Regardless of the effects of how we currently celebrate this “holiday” it’s interesting to consider its irony historically and culturally as it relates to today’s events.

Labor Day was first celebrated in 1882 (by the way, the same year that it became illegal to be Chinese in America … see the Chinese Exclusion Act … but I digress).  It became a federal holiday two years later when President Grover Cleveland and his congress rushed it into law in just 6 days to appease (You guessed it) the labor union after a workers union strike turned ugly in Pullman, Illinois.

Since then and to this day, Labor Day is a “holiday” that is strongly supported by the Unions.  Which I guess is appropriate since they have morphed into the muscle behind encouraging sloth at work.

I think that we should celebrate American industry not with honoring the Unions and encouraging people to stop working, but by honoring those who work hard and diligently as employees and entrepreneurs!



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