Rest. A time of rest from long hours of work. That's the principle enshrined in Labor Day, a 125-year-old American holiday that celebrates the spirit of organized labor. It's the spirit behind the six-day workweek, too. A day of rest was enshrined in monotheism's holy texts, after all, but it didn't become law until labor unions demanded it. ("Thou shalt remember the Sabbath and keep it holy" - did your boss forget?)
It's also the spirit behind the principle that people who work all their lives deserve a financially secure retirement. Our forebears fought to win us this time of rest, too, and now we're called on to defend it once more.
The White House keeps hinting that the President will once again propose cuts to Medicare and Social Security - either when he presents his jobs proposal next week, or shortly afterwards. That would roll back the hard-won principle that people who work hard deserve their time of rest. It would also be a harsh blow to a struggling economy after a devastating jobs report.
If Americans return from their Labor Day celebrations to hear their President announce these cuts, it will feel like the breaking of an ancient compact. Voters should encourage him not to make that mistake, and not to break that promise.
Days of Struggle
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