The attention-grabbing protests to reopen the economy appeared to be just workers and small business owners desperate to get back to work and angry at an uncaring government. And there is indeed desperation all over the country, as people can’t pay their bills, including rent or mortgages.
But the protests were not entirely what they seemed to be.
In reality, the most visible “back to work” protests were almost completely financed by a few nationwide, business-sponsored front groups relying on big money for their ideas and logistics and apparently not concerned about workers’ health and safety on the job or the possibility they would bring COVID-19 back to their homes.
Tea Party Patriots, FreedomWorks, Americans for Prosperity, and Save Our Country Coalition are just a few of these front groups using corporate money to spread anti-worker ideology while making it seem like they represent workers’ interests. If they care for workers so much, why aren’t they pushing for the government to put trillions into expanded unemployment compensation so people can survive while they are off the job? The government has shown it can find trillions of dollars when the pandemic threatens their profits.
In reality, this is one of the strategies of the one percent to try to get workers to go along with their program. We don’t have to go along with it. If working people organize, we can fight to get what we really need.
featured image credit: Wikimedia Commons