Reflection: Legacy of American labor song poems

By Nicole Ziege, F/G Scholar

American history has been filled with interesting forms of protests, and one of the more underrated forms includes the protest songs that are discussed in “Jesus was a Carpenter,” written by Clark Halker. According to the article, from 1865-1895, there were thousands of labor song poems that appeared in labor papers, union journals, broadsides, songsters and chapbooks. Continue reading Reflection: Legacy of American labor song poems

Reflection: Echoes of economic protest in today’s entertainment

By Cameron Coyle, F/G Scholar

Karl Reuber is one of the few Americans remembered for his protest poetry during the middle and late19th century, using the lines of his stanzas to air his grievances with what he found to be an immoral and unbalanced capitalistic supremacy from the country’s elite. Reuber’s anti-business beliefs (as well as his contemporaries’) were anchored in spirituality. Continue reading Reflection: Echoes of economic protest in today’s entertainment

Reflection: First Amendment and the protection of inaction

By Emma Collins, F/G Scholar

Although the labor movement struggled at first, the protests led by laborers did eventually secure rights for the workers. It was only by exercising their First Amendment rights to protest that they were able to achieve this. As a result of the movement, laborers were able to form unions to protect their rights and fight for them if necessary. In many cases, union membership became mandatory, and in some cases where membership was not mandatory, nonmembers were still required to pay union fees. Mandatory fees have not always sat well with people, and it begs the question: Is requiring nonmembers to pay fees a violation of the First Amendment? Continue reading Reflection: First Amendment and the protection of inaction