Today is Labor Day in the United States. I am trying to put on a happy face to celebrate it. I guess I should be reflective of the contributions that workers have made to our country. Instead, I am feeling a bit malaise because workers are truly not celebrated in this country.
During the Cold War, there was a sense of national pride at how we competed and excelled in science, industry, and technology. The only threat I can remember is when Japan and Germany began importing inexpensive cars. American automotive companies fired back with similarly priced with boxy looks. However, as time progressed foreign automotive overtook American companies causing a chunk of our industry leaving the United States.
Should we be celebrating Labor Day as anyone with a job? Do we honor those factory workers in Bangladesh or China? More than likely today 90% of our household appliances, cars and sciences were built on the contributions of foreign workers. I am beginning to see the disgust of American rhetoric becoming a tough pill for citizens to swallow. It is not the fault of foreign workers. Instead, it is the failure of American companies avoiding paying American workers by moving operations overseas or outsourcing.
What I find ironic is that Labor Day is celebrated as perhaps a marketing scheme. There is a Labor Day NASCAR race and of course the Labor Day shopping mall sales. To me, it diminishes the spirit of Labor Day and a reflection on workers. Those that should be enjoying a rest are put to the tests of stresses by working overtime. Maybe we if became contemplative in our thoughts during holidays we would become a bit more respectful and truly proud of our accomplishments. We may even find a bit of unity to keep jobs from being outsourced or migrated overseas.