“History will have to record,” Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote, “that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition is not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.” Today, forty-three years to the day after his assassination at the height of the Poor People’s campaign–today, at long last, after what has seemed like an eternity of passivity and shoegazing—comes the unmissable opportunity for thousands (millions?) to make a single great ringing clamor of protest, in solidarity with American workers. Organized by the AFL-CIO under the slogan “We Are One,” the events are of all stripes—candlelight vigils, worksite leaflets, teach-ins, marches, rallies. Find one near you, and go. Tell your family members, co-workers, friends—ah hell, even your enemies. And learn a few labor songs in the meantime. Here’s a classic, to the easy tune of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”
December 2, 2022
One chant-related goal is to rhyme something with “Passion doesn’t pay the rent,” so we can get a call-and-response going.
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