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This is one of the tales in American history that seems to be forgotten. This book serves as a reminder of the far that this country has come in terms of struggle for freedom. In many parts of the country, people think that the only element that America has fought to eliminate is racialism. This is, however, not the case. Back in the early 1900, the American people had to for the rights of the labor workers. During such a struggle, the populace tends to be against the government. It was not different back then, the results were horrific. Blood passion serves to remind American that they have fought for their land with blood and sweat, and should hence be proud of their motherland (Martelle, 2007).
The essence of the war was to liberate labor workers from the oppression that they were facing. When a people are united towards one cause, it is extremely hard to derail them from achieving their objective. Having faced harsh working conditions for a long time, that laborers formed a union through which they would confront the government and their employers. This was in an effort to solidify their voice together and hence have more impact. This was also the time when industrialization was taking shape and owners of factors of production wanted to capitalize on their gains. They hence did not provide their miners with basic commodities such as housing or sanitation. The motivating factor of the war was the inhumane living conditions that the workers faced. As a result they had to confront their employers.
The collision was hence inevitable. The side of the employers who had the power to avert the war was greedy and did not want to give the workers their dues. The laborers, on the other hand, did not have another option of airing their grievances other than fighting. At that time, most of the workers were illegal immigrants. Being in a vulnerable position, the employers took advantage of them and misused them. They would work hard all day without a break or sufficient food. No person can stand oppression for long. Upon channeling their energy towards self liberation, they got some of the things they wanted.
John Lawson represented the miners in the battle. The principle sides were the miners and the owners. The government was an intermediary seeking to bring peace between the two warring sides. According to the miners, the strike was a means to the ends that they sought. They initiated it because they wanted to communicate a message of defiance to the owners. As earlier said, these people had grown weary of the circumstances that they were facing and did not wish to continue on the same track. They were ready for call of the strike as soon as their demands were met. Due to the adamancies of the other sides, the struggle had to be dragged on for a considerable length of time.
The laborers understood the relationship between business and labor. However, this understanding was limited because most of them were illiterate. They did not comprehend the full intensity of players of macroeconomics. To them, the only thing that mattered was working and receiving fair wages for their efforts. They also wanted to receive money in form of legal tender and not credit from stores. They also wanted better standards of living which were different from the deplorable conditions in which they lived. Other aspects of business were left to the mine owners. This view was different from the other two constituents. Mine owners wanted to get as much coal as possible so as to maximize their profit. This meant that they had to spend as minimum an amount as possible on wages and employee upkeep. The government, on the other hand was interested in taxes. The more a company made, the more their tax would be to the authorities. The government was hence in favor of policies that maximized company turnover.
The miners harbored hatred for the other two contestants. This was well justified in this event. Many times, the employee and employers are on opposing sides on matters of wages. This trend is observable even in the present generation. These miners did not have much against the government, although they wanted its support in the war. Had the government supported them from the very start, the war would have been short and without much of tangible consequences.
There was a lot at stake for the mine workers. For instance they knew that Europe was about to fall into the world war I. they risked the possibility of being fired and losing their earnings all together. They also knew that they were engaging a more powerful side that could overpower them in terms of war equipments. These repercussions came to pass as the war progressed. People lost their lives. In fact, at one time, a tent with a woman and her children was burnt and they all perished inside. More than 70 people died in that war. Had the miners not started this war, such atrocities would not have happened. However, this was a price to pay for what they got in return. They were able to secure a wage increase while at the same time retaining a balance in business.
The course of the event was shaped by both the miners and the owners. While the battle was started by the miners, the employers engaged them and dragged on for some time before finally reaching an agreement. The most commendable job that the workers did was holding on even then they were almost losing. When the number of those who had died started rising, the miners had the option of surrendering to their masters and living forever in oppression. This was, however, not their resolve. They garnered power form their collective vision and fought on to the end.
The conflict was not inevitable. In the past, people had a tendency to use force in order to resolve conflicts. However, in this case, violence led to the death of innocent people in the war. One can say that the ends justify the means. However, that only serves to advance aggressive behavior in humanity. The miners would have looked to more peaceful ways of solving their grievances such as dialogue. They would have been guaranteed of passing their message to their employers and at the same time save the lives that were lost in the conflict. They would have also saved the time which was spent fighting they lost the wages of this period. The energy spent in this conflict would also have been channeled into their work.
This period in the history of the country provided an opportunity for workers to fight for their livelihood. It also gave a chance for the lowly citizen to rise up against powerful organizations such as the mine owners. It showed the power of a united people. It also gave the country a new meaning to cohesion of all citizens regardless of their origin. The miners involved in this conflict were from the Diaspora but were united by one cause. This spirit still lives on in the country, and has helped build a union of races under the umbrella of the United States of America.
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