Put away the rhetoric and the hot political debates. Take off your shoes and put your feet on the grass, in the sand or in the water, if you can. It's the Fourth of July, a celebration of the origins of America.
While many people have been rolling up their sleeves to work toward electing the next president, or educating themselves on the issues of concern to labor, health care and education, the Fourth is a time to slow down and come to agreement on several things: Leave room for hot dogs, break out the coolers, get cold drinks and find some friends and family and head to the fireworks.
Plant your flag proudly.
When you're out there choosing the goods for the festivities, whether they are in your backyard, at a party or in a town you are visiting, remember to buy union. If you're traveling, choose a unionized hotel, where workers earn fair wages. Check out Unite Here's FairHotel.org website for assistance.
"Every time you spend money, you are casting a vote for the kind of world you want." -- Anna Lappe, author and educator.
America has celebrated the Fourth of July since it became a federal holiday in 1941. Delegates of the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence – drafted by Thomas Jefferson -- on July 4, 1776. This formalized America's separation from Great Britain, following the Revolutionary War.
Keeping the spirit of America alive often takes dedication, commitment and ongoing education and reevaluation. On the Fourth of July, keeping the spirit alive is simple. Celebrate, remember and share gratitude for this country and for all who have sacrificed to keep this country free.
Here are some union-made goods to help support the working class in America:
- Coolers: Rubbermaid
- Flags: Artflag
- Beers: Budweiser, Coors, Miller, Pabst, Sam Adams
- Grills: Weber (Genesis, Summit, Q Series)
- Hot Dogs: Ball Park, Butterball, Hebrew National, Hormel, Oscar Mayer
- Ice Cream: Breyers, Good Humor, Prairie Farms, Tillamook
- Snacks: Prairie Flipz pretzels, Frito-Lay chips, Triscuit, Wheat Thins
- Oreo cookies (Note: The AFL-CIO has endorsed the BCTGM's boycott of Nabisco products made in Mexico.)
- Games: Battleship, Candy Land, Clue, Connect Four, Monopoly, Twister, Yahtzee
If you are getting behind the wheel or flying to travel for your vacation, check out this AFL-CIO blog post for information on discounts, travel alerts, and union hotels.
"The choices you make change people's lives," is the mantra at UNITE, the union representing many hospitality workers. "When you travel, travel union."