Food chain workers are also deemed essential, and, just as in the health care industry, many essential workers, especially farmworkers, are immigrants—75 percent, in fact, according to the most recent National Agricultural Workers Survey. Undervalued and underpaid and doing difficult and dangerous work, they have always been essential to our food supply, but the pandemic has made that designation official.
Few Americans have ever been inside a food processing plant and witnessed the pace of the work, the physical stress, and the close physical proximity the workers must labor under. It is impossible to socially distance, so this pandemic has added a new threat to their work, and it could soon severely impact our food supply. When Covid-19 necessitated processing plant closures, Smithfield chose to blame the immigrant workers rather than the poor working conditions, low pay, and Smithfield’s failure to ensure a safe working environment.
I know the work ethic of immigrant workers, I’ve seen it in processing plants, in the fields of Immoakalee Florida, and on my own farm. Always, they were hardworking, competent, and just trying to make a decent home for themselves in this country that often does not welcome them and, in many cases, created conditions that forced them to leave their home countries.
“Anything that is physically possible can also be made financially possible; money is a bugaboo of small minds.” ~~Robert A. Heinlein, The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress (1966)
At Daily Kos on this date in 2010—Immigration law is definitely Arizona’s Prop 187:
The California GOP’s embrace of the hateful Prop 187, which would’ve banned undocumented immigrants from all government services, including public education, continues to cost their party 16 years later. Since the initiative passed in 1994, Arnold Schwarzenegger in the only Republican, under bizarre conditions (the recall election), to win a governor, senator, or presidential race in the state. Democrats have dominated the rest of the statewide elected offices, with just a smattering of Republicans occasionally picking up the odd seat.
Now, California Latinos are a solid Democratic bloc, even though on social issues, they oftentimes line up more naturally with Republicans. In the Golden State, Barack Obama won 74 percent of the Latino vote, compared to just 23 percent for McCain.In Arizona, Obama won 56 percent of Latinos, with McCain getting 41 percent. Of course, McCain was a native son, so perhaps that boosted his numbers? Nope. In the 2006 Senate race, wingnut Sen. Jon Kyl got the same 41 percent of the Latino vote.
On today’s Kagro in the Morning show: Greg Dworkin probably never thought he’d have to round up polls on a president advocating drinking bleach, but here we are. WH press finally on the verge of revolt? USS Roosevelt update. East vs. West coast virus response: Communications the key factor?