Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Today in Labor History—October 30

October 30, 1916 –IWW (Industrial Workers of the World) members were forced to run a brutal gauntlet by vigilantes in Everett, Washington. A few days later, between 5 and 12 Wobblies would be shot dead by vigilantes during the Everett massacre. Tensions had been growing during a severe depression. The IWW had arrived to support a five-month long shingle workers strike. When a boat full of Wobblies arrived in Everett, the sheriff asked who their leader was. “We all are!” they shouted back. The sheriff said they couldn’t land and the Wobblies said, “like hell we can’t.” Someone fired a shot. No one knows who, but the majority of Wobblies were unarmed and the majority of subsequent rounds did come from the vigilantes on shore. (From the Daily Bleed)

October 30, 1986 – Attorney General Ed Meese urged employers to begin spying on workers in locker rooms, parking lots, shipping and mail room areas and even in the bars to try to catch them using drugs. (From the Daily Bleed)

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