It’s probably safe to say that you love Labor Day, because everyone could use a nice three day weekend. But do you actually know what the true meaning of Labor Day is or why we celebrate it? This holiday is suffering from some serious neglect. Its meaning has been reduced to a long weekend spent barbequing or at the beach; back to school sales; and signifying the end of summer. It’s much more than that though. Labor Day has a rich history and is definitely relevant in today’s society.
The modern labor movement began in the mid-19th century, but it is still the basis of the working rights we have today. Unions that protected the rights of workers were being introduced. They gained major popularity when the unions of New York City decided to have a parade in celebration of their pride in being part of the American workforce, as well as their fight to improve our nation. However, it wasn’t always an easy battle. On May 4, 1886, a bomb exploded at a union rally, initiating violence that killed several police officers and pedestrians. After this tragic event, President Grover Cleveland made a national holiday to celebrate labor and show America’s solidarity with its working class. Labor Day was established to commend the hard work of the American people by giving us a day of rest. Since the creation of this national holiday, the relentless work and courage of our labor unions over the years has resulted in labor rights including the 40 hour work week, minimum wage, sick leave, worker’s compensation, overtime pay, child labor laws, and more. Many of us take these rights for granted now and forget that we as an American people had to fight for the system we have today.
It is still a fight. This Labor Day, we should be thankful for the important rights we have, but also realize the improvements that still need to be made. For example, go look through some of the things in your house and count how many say “Made in America.” It probably isn’t a very large number. We certainly haven’t been supporting American workers or our national economy like we used to. Our nation lost its 110 year streak as the largest manufacturing nation in the world to China in 2010. We no longer successfully foster the ideal that making things still creates real value! Even our educational system has removed hands on workshops from schools and doesn’t often allow or encourage trade studies.
We must inspire the next generation to one day improve our nation by educating them, fostering their creativity, and emphasizing what matters. Since today’s society idealizes being rich and famous, most kids dream of growing up to be just that. Although it’s always great to dream big, why not aspire to be the next great construction engineer or run your own business selling things you’re passionate about? We need to inspire them by highlighting the importance of all kinds of careers. Everyone has a talent that they can harness to do what they love! It just takes a little hard work. With 25% of American youth unemployed, we need to keep the next generation of American workers alive.
It’s no secret that unemployment is just high in general. It’s important that we create a space where businesses can thrive, now more than ever. In purchasing products that are made in America, you are helping to create and sustain jobs. This Labor Day, you could pledge to always buy products that are made in America if it’s an option. Just check the label! You could also spend the day shopping at local small businesses to support your community’s economy and citizens.
At Paradiso Insurance, we believe in the American Dream. With hard work, you can achieve your goals, which is one of the many reasons why we love this great country. This Labor Day, celebrate your hard work and success while also helping give others the opportunity to prosper, too. We can work together to improve. However, today is also the perfect opportunity to also be thankful for what we have already achieved as a nation. Although we forget sometimes, we are so lucky to have fair working laws and protected rights. It’s all thanks to the hard work of labor unions throughout history. Hopefully, this blog has inspired you to look beyond the thrill of the long weekend or end of summer to the true meaning of Labor Day. We hope you celebrate properly by remembering, really thinking, and of course, resting! Everyone here at Paradiso Insurance will be doing just that so we’ll be out of the office today. Don’t worry though, we’ll be back first thing tomorrow. If you ever have any questions about your Connecticut Insurance policy or would like to get a free quote, give us a call at 860-684-5270. Have a wonderful Labor Day!