Here’s today’s labor history:
On this date in 1937, the movie Modern Times premiered. The tale of the tramp – played by Charlie Chaplin -- and his paramour – played by Paulette Goddard – brilliantly mixed slapstick comedy and social satire, as the couple struggled to overcome the difficulties of the machine age including unemployment and nerve-wracking factory work, and get along in modern times.
In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the Family and Medical Leave Act, requiring employers to grant up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for a family or medical emergency.
And on this date in 2003, in what turned out to be a fatal business decision, Circuit City fired nearly 4,000 experienced sales people. Sales plummeted and six years later Circuit City declared bankruptcy.
Today’s labor quote is by Charlie Chaplin:
“We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery, we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost."
Charlie Chaplin, who said “You the people have the power, the power to create machines, the power to create happiness! You the people have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure! Then, in the name of democracy, let us use that power. Let us all unite! Let us fight for a new world, a decent world . . .”