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Will the Unions Save America?

Saving ourselves from ourselves, younger more diverse leaders are emerging, developing new and better ways to fight

Kris LaGrange's picture
Dec 15, 2017
Every now and then I get some idiot who infiltrated a union job saying something stupid to me via social networks. "Hey commy I'm union and I voted for Trump," These are not leaders by any means, just some dope who the company hired and the union is forced to represent. I know a few labor leaders if they could just let guys like this fall on their swords they would, but DFR lawsuits force unions to spend 95% of their resources on 5% of those who embarrass us all. That's the whole point of Right-to-Work laws that Trump's Janus is trying to force us all to work under. Janus will force unions to spend all their money defending the idiots who troll me on Facebook and Twitter. It's frustrating I know, but those trolls do not represent me, you or your union. Something good has happened this year and it's been a long year for unionist like us. The headlines, TV news and social network feeds can be depressing at times. But out of the bad comes the good, I guess that's the Catholic in me - trying to find light in the darkness. When a racist child molester was going to become a United States Senator with the help of Trump and his Republican Party, working people and their unions took a stand.
In Alabama, Civil Rights lawyer and Democrat Doug Jones beat out a man who once dated a high schooler when he was in his 30's. The black vote came out big as did younger voters and women with children. The union vote and its efforts were big. Alabama has a higher union density than Wisconsin; 10.2% of everyone who works for a living in Alabama belongs to a union.
Unsure if anyone has really noticed, but leadership at the AFL-CIO is getting younger, stronger and smarter as well. Katie Shindle of Actors Equity, Sara Nelson of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, Paul Rinaldi of National Air Traffic Controllers and John Samuelson of the Transport Workers Union aren't exactly using walkers to get to those famed AFL-CIO Executive Council meetings. Seasoned fighters like the Communications Workers of America's Chris Shelton are working in careful alliance with strategists from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The IBEW has been funding Youth Councils across the nation and are making room for the next generation of union leaders.
Our union movement is evolving to deal with the new politic, the cheap and quick news that feeds the UCOMM troll. Those once on the sidelines are now on the front lines and even though its been a long exhausting year, we plan to rest during the last week of the year to plan and prepare to fight Trump's Janus. We need to save ourselves from ourselves, and the only people qualified to fight that fight are the very people reading this piece.

On behalf of myself and all of us here at UCOMM, have a Happy Hanukkah, a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous and progressive New Year.


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