September 1, 2013

Holiday History: Labor Day. {Video}

Why Labor Day Matters.

It’s only recently that women, men, and even children don’t work 16 hours a day, 7 days a week. There’s a reason for that.

Labor rights continue to be under assault here and…brrr…around the world. Think about what you wear, and where it came from. Is child labor illegal? Are there basic environmental protections?

My seven-year-old knows more about the historical roots of Labor Day than I do.

This was confirmed recently when he brought home a grade of 100 percent on a Labor Day exam. As I scanned through the questions I realized I knew very little about why we have this holiday; instead I have more of a generic, bastardized version—kind of like the happy meal version of Columbus “discovering” America that we’ve been force-fed.

Now, I’m a little embarrassed by this. Particularly because some of my closes friends are hard-working, proud Union Members. 

If you, like me, give vague, distracted answers when children approach about this holiday and you’d like more respectable answers than “it’s the holiday right before you go back to school” or “it’s to celebrate people that work… work hard… I mean really hard” then this video is for you.

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