The holiday season is about to begin. On Wednesday at sundown Hanukkah begins (Hanukkah Sameach). Then on Thursday the Black Friday sales begin! Did I miss something? Oh that’s right, Thursday is also Thanksgiving Day. Or at least it used to be. The events of Black Friday are quickly taking over Thanksgiving and soon there will be nothing left.
Sarah Palin says there is a ‘War on Christmas’. She is wrong; the ‘war’ is on Thanksgiving and the American worker. The difference is that Black Friday is ‘free-market capitalism’ in action, so that makes it suitable in their book.
I would expect this trend to continue and next year Walmart, and other terrible retailers, will be opening at 12pm (noon) on Thanksgiving. If we do not do something to stop these greedy retailers from opening earlier and earlier, it will not be long before they do not even bother to close for Thanksgiving.
This year millions of workers are being forced to work on Thanksgiving to feed the greed of their corporate owners. This action absolutely disgusts me. There are some jobs like police, fire, doctors, nurses, and emergency staff that works 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, holidays included. These jobs are necessary for public safety and are usually paid a hefty bonus for working the holiday. These are not the people I am complaining about.
I am disgusted at the retail stores who continue to steal the Thanksgiving holiday from their employees. Last year stores opened at Midnight on Friday morning, or 10pm on Thursday night. Now stores are opening at 6 or 7 pm. Utterly disgusting!
Forced to work on Thanksgiving, for what, $7.25 an hour. Walmart makes $25 billion dollars in profits every year and yet workers are living in poverty due to low wages.
Recently MIT created the living wage calculator. The living wage calculator is chart that shows how much you would have to earn to have a ‘living wage’.
As you can see in New Hampshire a single person would need to make a little more than $10 an hour to meet the living wage standard. The numbers go up dramatically when you start to include children in the mix. A single parent with two children would need to make almost $30.00 to meet the living wage standards.
This year thousands of Walmart workers will be walking out on Black Friday. They are trying to make national attention to the low-wages that Walmart is paying. They are striking for a living wage. The organizers of the group Organization United for Respect at Walmart (OUR Walmart) is asking for a few simple things.
- Respect workers as individuals.
- Schedule workers for full time- 40 hours a week- positions.
- Pay workers a living wage, $25,000 per year (full time work) or $13 per hour.
- Expand their healthcare options to make it affordable to workers.
- End the retaliation against workers who speak up about problems.
This year (and every year) I vow not to shop at Walmart until they begin to give their workers respect and start paying works a living wage. I know I am only one man, and my family will not make a difference in the billions of dollars in revenue that Walmart brings in. That is not going to stop me. The more of us that take a stand against Walmart and their evil greedy mentality we will start to make a difference.
We are already making a difference. Since last year’s strikes, Walmart has lost 2% in overall sales. We need to keep the pressure on Walmart to show them we value the workers more than their low-priced Chinese crap.
(Please take a moment to read and sign OUR Walmart’s declaration for respect.)