December 5, 2003

By Michael Strickland

Greed Strike

For those of you who don't live in California, we've all been dealing with a strike by grocery workers that's over two months old. It hasn't been pretty, but yesterday—here in San Diego, at least—the ugliness sunk to new lows. What little sympathy I had for these strikers (not much) has totally evaporated.

In what union leaders called a "rally" and rational human beings more accurately characterized as a "riot," several hundred striking workers demonstrated yesterday outside a Vons store in La Mesa. Lined up in droves outside the entrances to the store, they jeered and taunted shoppers as they entered and exited the store. Customers had to run the gauntlet as they pushed their grocery carts out to their cars, while rabid strikers waved picket signs and shouted at them. Understandably, a number of shoppers, including a wheelchair-bound elderly woman, felt so fearful of the spectacle that they cowered inside the store until police arrived to subdue the ruckus. One 52-year-old woman striker was even arrested for hitting a 13-year-old girl with a picket sign.

Traditionally, striking workers play the role of the oppressed, attempting to engender public sympathy in their resistance to supposedly overbearing, greedy employers. Throughout this strike, these strikers have instead acted in turns obnoxious, offensive and confrontational. What purpose yesterday's "rally" served, I can't fathom. What sympathy could they possibly have thought to generate with such aggressive, ugly behavior? Surely, no one who saw the news footage of hapless consumers facing the horde will ever again honk their horn in support as they drive by the supermarket.

The striking grocery workers wave signs that scream "STOP CORPORATE GREED," but in my opinion, the whole genesis of this strike came from greed on the part of overpaid blue-collar workers who have not the slightest comprehension of how good they've got it. Now, they're eating crow for their holiday dinners. I hope the supermarket chains keep digging in their heels until these maniacs learn some civility and humility.


©2003 Michael Strickland ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

What is "The Daily Strick"?

I have long called myself a writer, but too often I don't do what a writer must do daily: write. So you, dear reader, are the beneficiary of my resolution to make a positive change in at least one area of my life. Every single day of this new year (almost), I will write something, anything, and post it here. It is my intention to use this daily exercise to jump-start my too-long-dormant creative energies, and perhaps generate some worthwhile material this year. Hopefully you will find at least an occasional amusement or insight in my daily musings.

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December Columns:

12/31: Happy New Year
12/29: Return of the Oscar King
12/28: The Year in Travel
12/26: Trial by Piranha
12/25: Merry Christmas
12/22: Red Squares
12/21: Havasu Falls
12/20: Last Will & Testament
12/19: Bah Humbug
12/16: Newsworthy
12/15: The "Strick" Dialogues
12/14: Animal-Animal
12/12: Old Memories
12/7: Letters to the Editor
12/5: Greed Strike
12/4: Another Day at the Office
12/3: The "Back" in Quarterback
12/1: Sixty-Four
Previous months in The Archive

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