Maybe what the country needs is a Sara Nelson, who would be a fresh face in an old space – Labor Union Leader. CBS Sunday Morning’s Richard Buddenhagen titled his news report; Sara Nelson, The new face of Labor Unions.
Here we have the face of two American Heroes; Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger (the US Airways pilot who landed his damaged plane in the Hudson River) and Sara Nelson who helped end one of the longest government shutdowns in American history as they sat before a House Committee on Air Transportation on Capital Hill in Washington D.C. in June 2019.
Sara Nelson came to predominance during a speech – a call to arms– she gave to the AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor – Congress of Industrial Organizations) during the January 2019 Federal government shut down. The last time there was a call for a general strike was in 1946. With 12 million workers walking out in mass, politicians and business leaders would finally take notice.
When four hundred thousand people are forced to come to work without pay, it creates an unsafe environment especially when those people are airport screeners and air traffic controllers during the post 9/11 world we live in today. When President Ronald Reagan fired all those air traffic controllers in 1981 it started a downward spiral for all labor unions.
My first ‘real job’, was on the auto assembly line in Detroit MI in the late 1960’s. The UAW (United Auto Workers) made sure auto manufacturers provided a decent living wage for many until the late 1980, then Corporate American leadership and politicians decided to adopt the Better Business Model as explained by Les Leopold in his book Runaway Inequality, An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice.