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Front Page » September 4, 2007 » Opinion » Rantings and Ravings
Published 2,954 days ago

Rantings and Ravings

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Sun Advocate reporter

So another Labor Day has come and gone. Summer's official close. For our community, Labor Day held a special poignancy this season as we cope with the loss of so many coal miners.

But I hope that in the midst of mourning we can take time to reflect on the accomplishments of all who are toiling in rank and file jobs to keep our society functioning. I am not just talking about manufacturing and extraction jobs. I am not focusing on union or non-union, instead I am thinking about the majority of us who go to work each day and just do whatever job we have that needs to be done.

Many of us like what we do and realize that despite the fact that we all love our paychecks, its not all about money. It would be hard for it to be all about money when we are surrounded by stories of athletes who hold out because their 13 million dollar contract, guaranteed for three years is not enough.

It's hard to even conceive of getting paychecks big enough to plunk down on three mansions across the U.S. and still have enough left to buy a diamond encrusted backgammon game for your boyfriend like some pop and movie stars can do. And we are just sickened by the reports of company CEO's who make 250 times what their employees do and get mega million dollar golden parachutes when they leave a company they have driven into the ground.

So we go to work each day, flipping burgers, treating patients, selling office supplies or whatever it is and we smile. We head to the mines, the used car lots and schools to teach and we think about the weekend coming up. We find people jobs, treat people's minds, clean people's toilets and still find time to volunteer.

Each and every day we all add a little piece to our community and society that makes a difference. Some roles are more evident for that, but if all the fast food workers called in sick on the same day, many people would have their own lives disrupted. In a life shattering way? Probably not. But enough for us to value those who are there for our own personal convenience.

I give credit to those who put their lives on the line each day for us. To the police, fire fighters and the coal miners and others who take on dangerous tasks so we can have a great quality of life, I salute you.

And to those who work for peanuts at jobs most of us have never had, I also salute you.

For all the military who are serving in our volunteer forces, I honor you. And for the rest of us who work each day, and make a difference (including all you stay at home moms out there), let's pat ourselves on the back as well.

We are all doing a great job and I hope you all had a pleasant Labor Day weekend.

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September 4, 2007
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