Thoughts on Labor Day

A. J. MacDonald, Jr. taking a break on a job site in Tucson, AZ (2009)

White collar workers are usually off work on Labor Day whereas blue collar workers usually work on Labor Day.

The word “labor” usually means: blue collar worker, not white collar worker.

For example, a coal miner labors in a mine whereas the executive assistant to the deputy undersecretary is the sort of office worker title we see often see in the US federal government when we speak of federal white collar workers.

The federal office workers are not thought of as “laboring” in DC but of pushing paper and keys on a keyboard in air conditioned offices which, compared to mining or construction work is hardly “work” at all, to me.

Perhaps “labor” should equate with perspiration or: sweat. In other words, if at your job you are not laboring to the point of sweating you are not a laborer.

What would it be like if blue collar people were off on Labor Day but white collar workers had to work? Can you imagine? Office workers going to work without a single store or restaurant being open?

But its quite alright, for some reason, for air conditioned office workers to be off on Labor Day, so they can run around town shopping, while blue collar people labor and sweat to serve them.

Seems odd – and backwards – to me to have a day which is dedicated to blue collar workers which grants white collar people the day off but not the people the day itself is dedicated to.

Construction workers

About ajmacdonaldjr

writer, author, blogger
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