Today as we celebrate Labor Day, which is a Federal holiday that celebrates American workers and their social and economic achievements, let’s take some time to appreciate our great country. While many of us will rush out to the stores to catch the Labor Day sales, it’s also a great time to reflect and appreciate how far we have come.
The US Department of Labor reports that “the first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. In 1884 the first Monday in September was selected as the holiday and the Central Labor Union urged similar organizations in other cities to follow the example of New York and celebrate a ‘workingmen’s holiday’ on that date. The idea spread with the growth of labor organizations, and in 1885 Labor Day was celebrated in many industrial centers of the country.” In 1887, President Grover Cleveland established that Labor Day would be a Federal holiday observed on the first Monday of September.
Let’s take the time to read some inspiring quotes from noted Americans which point to the triumphs and realities of labor in the USA:
“It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage that we move on to better things.” – Theodore Roosevelt
“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
“I believe in the dignity of labor, whether with head or hand; that the world owes no man a living but that it owes every man an opportunity to make a living.” – John D. Rockefeller
“A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned.” – Thomas Jefferson
“No man can call himself liberal, or radical, or even a conservative advocate of fair play, if his work depends in any way on the unpaid or underpaid labor of women at home, or in the office.” – Gloria Steinem