Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Racism of the Unions


...organized labor’s rise to power typically came at the expense of black workers. Consider collective bargaining, the legal arrangement whereby a union selected by a majority of employees receives the monopoly bargaining power to exclusively represent all employees. This valuable union tool first became part of federal law under section 7A of the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933. Since blacks were barred from the vast majority of unions at that time, collective bargaining served as a de facto ban on all black workers in unionized shops.

...leading black newspapers like The Chicago Defender attacking the pro-union NRA as the “Negro Removal Act,” “Negro Run Around,” and "No Roosevelt Again." According to the left-wing sociologist and historian W.E.B. Du Bois, "the most sinister power that the NRA has reinforced is the American Federation of Labor."

...collective bargaining promptly reemerged via section 9 of 1935's National Labor Relations Act (also known as the Wagner Act, after its sponsor, Democratic New York Sen. Robert Wagner). That law originally contained a clause forbidding union discrimination against blacks, but the clause was dropped at the insistence of the American Federation of Labor—which then enjoyed state-sanctioned monopoly powers and continued its long tradition of excluding and mistreating black workers until the passage of federal civil rights laws in the 1960s.

Shouldn't be a surprise. Most "gun ban" laws were written to disarm blacks in the South after the Civil War, too.

HT: Hit and Run


Anonymous said...

This is the same canard that points out D reps in the deep south blocked civil rights legislation. Did the RCC limit the role of blacks in the 1930s? 40s? 50s? Can we say that's the same RCC today? Please extrapolate your position, if you will.

Dad29 said...

It's not a "canard," it's a fact.

Anonymous said...

Ahh, but that's only part of the story, right dad? Those D reps from the 30s would never be mistaken as social liberals or progressives, and may just as well be referenced as "equivalents of today's GOP."

All things considered, yes this makes your original claim a canard.

Jim said...

In 1935 blacks were banned from just about everything. Can't see why unions would be different.

"Shouldn't be a surprise. Most "gun ban" laws were written to disarm blacks in the South after the Civil War, too."

I actually don't think "MOST gun ban laws" is accurate. Do you?

Anonymous said...

I thought only liberals pulled out the race card!

Dad29, be careful. There was also racism in the RCC during the time period you speak about.

Should we demoralize this institution for past sins? NO!

As I stated earlier, history is not your strong suit. Even Lincoln who "freed the slaves" favored the separation of the races. It's called being a product of the times.

Dad29 said...


There were racist MEMBERS of the Catholic church. Unlike the (D) folks cited in the post, however, those MEMBERS did not write civil laws--nor Church laws--enshrining discrimination.

Anonymous said...

Stay on point, Dad29. Both the Democrats and the RCC implicitly enabled racism to become part of its practices. With SOUTHERN DEMOCRATS, the passage of race laws. With SOUTHERN PRIESTS, the adherence to such laws. NORTHERN DEMOCRATS and NORTHERN PRIESTS denounced such actions.

You're trying to make the argument--weakly, I may add--that one group is more "racist" than another group. You really want to go there? The RCC has a HISTORY of racist practices. For starters, some members justified slavery, and the subjugation of Native Americans, with Bible passages.

You're desperately trying to equate unions (and Democrats) with being inherently racist, while minimizing the RCC's own past actions.

As I stated earlier, I thought only liberals brought up race. Nope, conservatives used that card for their own (sick) purposes, too.

Merriam Webster said...

To Anonymous 2/23/2011 9:09 PM:

–verb (used with object)
1. to infer (an unknown) from something that is known; conjecture.

Requesting inference(s) here does not make any sense.

I believe you meant, "...expound upon...".

You must be one of the teachers protesting...

Anonymous said...

Oh-fer-two, Sister Merriam. What does your reference guide give as the year of the first African-American bp.?