Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

UAW’s Striking Violence

Media profiles portray UAW president Ron Gettelfinger as a thoughtful, even pious, fellow. Maybe he should influence his organization a little more. A UAW strike in Arkansas is getting ugly, and turning violent.

Here are some highlights, courtesy of The Daily Citizen, of harassment of replacement workers:

  • “I saw this guy lunge at me … Instinctively, I swerved to miss him. Next thing I know, I’m laying on the ground, pulling my helmet off, and there is a first responder standing over me … If I hadn’t been wearing my helmet and jacket I’d be dead right now.”
  • “Another replacement worker, who asked their name be withheld in fear of retaliation, told The Daily Citizen what they had experienced crossing the picket line. ‘They do everything in their power so we will run over them,’ the Kohler employee said. ‘They put nails in the driveway.'”
  • “A second temporary worker, who also asked their name be withheld, described what it was like to cross the picket line. ‘They follow people home and spray paint their vehicles,’ the worker said. ‘They scream obscenities and hit my car with their signs. They’re being down right vicious.'”
  • “On Saturday, a man reported strikers had dented his vehicle with a ball bearing, broke the mirror and dented the hood. Damage was estimated at $1,000. Another employee said two small dents that appeared to be from a pellet gun were made in his car, causing $1,000 in damage. Replacement workers have also said screws have littered the entrance to Kohler as they enter.”
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