Labor Day and Strikes

I somewhat remember this (the Pullman Strike resulting in Labor Day)  from one of my high school American history classes taught by one Mr. Meeth who had the brains of -  well he had them and they kept him alive but as far as anything "firing" in that noggin of his?? 

He was also the basketball coach. In my freshman and sophomore years interest in basketball was high because we had back to back great classes, to the point where we put two teams of freshman and two junior varsity teams each with nearly perfect records. Expectations were high so Meeth cut the team back to 8 players - not enough even to have a scrimmage and in 3 of the first 5 games we finished with only 4 players in the last quarter...that incredible mind was characteristic of our American History class and to an extent current busines/labor generally in America.  It was the precursor to "productivity for profit - why have a full team if you can get by with 8?  Why have a violin section of 16 if 1 can play the part....yada yada

I digressed to my high school days as at the time, after the 5th game there was a bit of unrest.  Anyway, that dismal bit of coaching gave us reason to question things.  His response was not what we had hoped for - something between get out of my sight and I'll shoot you dead.

I'm not bragging but I eventually got one Ph.D. in history and frankly was pretty good at it.  I think I knew more of it than this ant-brain did anyway so I felt empowered to stand up in class and tell "management" that he/they/it was shall we say it kindly...the north side of a cow headed south and I'm not buying either his view or rendition of history or how he was killing the basketball program.  I came to school the following day and went to American History, 2nd period, and Meeth informed me he was going to fail me regardless and then had me removed from the classroom by the dean of students (aka "the enforcer").  One of the other kid's parents who had also risen in protest and was similarly hauled away (her dad's uncle was, incidentally  the judge and another a prominant attorney) took the school and Meeth by the neck  by lunchtime and the matter was "resolved" without a legal shot being fired.

Now that I think about it, the lesson of the day may have been about teaching why there are labor unions and laws and the necessity of certain worker's rights and opinions in some  institutions. Of course, some of the stuff unions do is off the charts dumb and shortsighted and I can't support it  but, in general, without some degree of organization and rights,  "management" tends to think more in terms of being god-like than man-like...and if you need an example take ta look back at the last couple decades....