Comments of a supporter of the “Fight for $15” action in Downtown Boston on September 4, 2014 as part of a national struggle for economic justice and dignity for the our hard working sisters and brothers. The words still apply as we head into 2016:
No question in this wicked old world that those at the bottom are “the forgotten ones.” Here we are talking about working people, people working and working hard for eight, nine, ten dollars an hour. Maybe working two jobs to make ends meet since a lot of times these McJobs, these Wal-Marts jobs do not come with forty hours of work attached but whatever some cost-cutting manager deems right. And lately taking advantage of cover from Obamacare keeping the hours below the threshold necessary to kick in health insurance and other benefits. Yes, the forgotten people.
But let’s do the math here figuring on forty hours and figuring on say ten dollars an hour. That‘s four hundred a week times fifty weeks (okay so I am rounding off for estimate purposes here too since most of these jobs do not have vacation time figured in).That’s twenty thousand a year. Okay so just figure any kind of descent apartment in the Boston area where I am writing this-say one thousand a month. That’s twelve thousand a year. So the other eight thousand is for everything else. No way can that be done. And if you had listened to the young and not so young fast-food workers, the working mothers, the working older brothers taking care of younger siblings, workers trying to go to school to get out of the vicious cycle of poverty you would understand the truth of that statement. And the stories went on and on along that line all during the action.
Confession: it has been a very long time since I have had to scrimp and scrim to make ends meet, to get the rent in, to keep those damn bill-collectors away from my door, to beg the utility companies to not shut off those necessary services. But I have been there, no question. And I did not like it then and I do not like the idea of it now. I am here to say even the “Fight for $15” is not enough, but it is a start. And I whole-heartedly support the struggle of my sisters and brothers for a little economic justice in this wicked old world. And any reader who might read this-would you work for slave wages? I think not. So show your solidarity and get out and support the fast-food and Wal-Mart workers in their just struggles.
Organize Wal-Mart! Organize the fast food workers! Union! Union!