What, you say? That's not a REAL choice. Well, New York State thinks
it is . .
began serving a 10-day sentence for leading last year‘s transit
strike, turning himself in at a Manhattan courthouse after marching across
the Brooklyn Bridge with a boisterous group of supporters.
"I stand here today because a judge has found me guilty of contempt
of court," Toussaint said outside the courthouse. "The truth of
the matter is that I have nothing but contempt for a system that gives employers
free rein to abuse workers."
The Bob Marley song "Get Up, Stand Up" and cheers from a crowd
of dozens greeted Toussaint as he arrived at the rally in Brooklyn before
the march across the bridge.
Union leaders addressed the crowd, hailing Toussaint as a working-class hero
who stood up for the rights of the common man by demanding fair treatment
on pensions, health care and wages.
Sharpton, who called the punishment an immoral attempt to intimidate workers,
promised to hold a vigil on the union boss‘ first night in jail. He
said he would stay in a tent outside the jail to protest.
What did Pataki have to say?
"I would prefer that the people of New York think and pray of the firefighter
who has gone through many operations and faces many more before he can walk,
instead of someone who actually provoked this illegal action"[.]
His conduct was illegal because the law is immoral, not to mention
When the transit workers
struck, they were exercising their most basic labor right: the right to
quit work. Nobody denies that this right is guaranteed by the Thirteenth
Amendment to the United States Constitution, which prohibits slavery and involuntary
But employers argue that the Amendment guarantees only the individual right
to quit in isolation from other workers. This argument misses the
whole point of the right to quit, which is, according to the Supreme
Court, to give workers the "power below" and employers the "incentive
above to relieve a harsh overlordship or unwholesome conditions of
Where is the so-called freedom our
soldiers are dying for when our government can throw us in jail for together
refusing to work?
It's time to take a cold hard look at the government that claims legal authority
over us and realize that, somewhere along the way, the moral justification for
that authority - to provide for the General Welfare - evaporated. It
no longer exists.
It therefore bears repeating that. . .
. . . whenever
any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right
of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government,
laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such
form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
It's time to exercise our right, indeed our duty as a free people, to alter
this government and if it cannot be altered to abolish it and institute a new
one that protects the rights endowed to us by our Creator.