Tuesday, May 7, 2013 | 2:01 a.m.
For over 50 years, I worked without joining a union. During that time, I was ignorant about the history of unions and didn’t know that the unions had fought extremely hard for middle-class workers, union and nonunion.
Today, the middle-class worker is vanishing right in front of our eyes, and so are the unions.
Many people speak of the unions with disdain. I believe some public-sector unions with their outrageous salary and retirement benefits recently exposed in the newspapers have soured people on all unions. Think Las Vegas police and fire departments.
Granted over the years, the private-sector unions have caused many of their own problems and image issues. We cannot compare today’s union with the union that existed 50 years ago. Unions are not trying to restore the good old days. They know that is not possible. The new United Auto Workers contracts are the best example.
Today, we need to reverse the decline of the middle class and its stagnation over the past 30 years, which coincides with the decline of the unions. This decline isn’t an accident; it’s because the unions have come to represent every middle-class worker, union or nonunion.
There has been a plan crafted by the wealthy, the corporate heads and the Republican Party to destroy the unions and the middle class. The financial gains realized by destroying union after union have all gone to the union destroyers. Corporations would be happy to have everyone work for minimum wage or less. What a scam!