Labor 101: The Importance of Being Working Class

The Working Stiff Journal Vol. 2 #6, August 1999 by Jackie Dana For too long we workers—those who do work for others—have been brainwashed by our corporation-driven society to be ashamed of what we are. In 1999 it’s hard to find someone who takes pride in being “working class.” Most people structure their whole lives to escape the treacherous confines of the working class, to become the supposedly more respectable and comfortable “middle class,” seeing the label as more important than the substance. Many of us believe the myths promoted by our politicians that we are better off than our parents and grandparents, that the standard of living is better than at any other time in the past century, and that the efforts to improve working conditions, pay, and benefits are largely unnecessary. Now that we’re all “middle class,” and now that proportionately fewer people work in factories or mines, unions are presented as some anachronistic holdover from the unwashed … Read more…