Sunday, January 08, 2006

LA Times Hit piece on UFW

Farmworkers Reap Little as Union Strays From Its Roots

The movement built by Cesar Chavez has failed to expand on its early successes organizing poor rural laborers. As their plight is used to attract donations that benefit others, services for those in the fields are left to languish.

By Miriam Pawel, Times Staff Writer

Red letters flash inside the famous black eagle, symbol of the United Farm Workers: "Donate," the blinking message urges, to carry on the dreams of Cesar Chavez.

Bannered on websites and spread by e-mail, the insistent appeals resonate with a generation that grew up boycotting grapes, swept up in Chavez's populist crusade to bring dignity and higher wages to farmworkers.

Thirty-five years after Chavez riveted the nation, the strikes and fasts are just history, the organizers who packed jails and prayed over produce in supermarket aisles are gone, their righteous pleas reduced to plaintive laments.

What remains is the name, the eagle and the trademark chant of "Sí se puede" ("Yes, it can be done") — a slogan that rings hollow as UFW leaders make excuses for their failure to organize California farmworkers.

Continued...

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

So, the UFW says it's going to stop organizing farmworkers and instead organize any latino workers who fall into their lap -- and then negotiate sweetheart below-market contracts on their behalf. They also refuse to help farmworkers who organized themselves to strike for better wages, and then use their story -- without their knowledge -- to raise money the workers will never see. This is your "mainstream unionism as a movement of the working class"? Right...

Will said...

Yeah. The corporate press is evil evil liars until they back up some idiotic wobs delusions of granduer or trash a real union...