Yes, I know, here we are, Labor Day. The traditional end of Summer for many. As is the case with Memorial Day it is an extra day off to get in that last bit of vacation, swimming and barbecue.
But, as is also the case with Memorial Day, there is a deeper meaning to this day that seems to get lost.
The first Labor Day was celebrated on September 5, 1882 by the Central Labor Union of New York. It became a Federal holiday in 1894 after a Pullman strike where several workers were killed by the U.S. Military and U.S. Marshals. After the incident, President Grover Cleveland made fostering better relations with the Labor Movement a top priority for his administration. Fearing that there would be more conflict, Congress passed legislation making Labor Day a National holiday just 6 days after the end of the strike.
Because Americans are a unique breed, we also have a unique work ethic. America was founded on the idea of hard work and it's rewards. Most of us learn early on that if we want it bad enough, we will have to work for it. We all look back at those first jobs a little more fondly with the passing of time. We may have hated every minute of it, but the lessons it taught us we use to this very day. It is because of this work ethic that Americans have the highest standard of living in the world. Americans not only work hard to support ourselves, but we also feed and clothe a good portion of the world.
On this paricular Labor Day, it is hard not to think about so many Americans who are unemployed right now, who have been unemployed for quite some time. With so many American jobs going overseas many people wonder just where the Company loyalty went for employees who stayed with one job for all of their working lives and retired from that company. It does not happen anymore.
We can only hope that the environment for small businesses to grow and prosper and massive regulation on larger corporations will end soon and make it possible for them to hire more people and expand.
Looking back, sometimes those burger-flipping, dishing out of movie popcorn jobs maybe don't seem so bad now.