More freedom would benefit more workers

Re: Important aspects of Labour Day lost, forgotten, Letters, Sept. 6.

To the Editor,

Re: Important aspects of Labour Day lost, forgotten, Letters, Sept. 6.

In lauding Labour Day, letter writer Michael Razberry has gotten it all wrong.

Volunteering for servitude doesn’t make you any less a servant.

Many jobs, particularly in the public service, require mandatory union membership. That hardly suggests a labour movement that is “searching for freedom”.

Where is the freedom to associate or by extension, to not associate with others?

True freedom can only belong to an individual.

A collective of any kind is antithetical to freedom, because one must obey the will of those who run the scheme.

For example, unions force members to pay dues which are used to support political parties espousing policies with which the member may strongly disagree.  How can being taxed to finance those you oppose be considered ‘freedom’?

I’ve been a member of at least three major unions over my working life and can state categorically that their rationale for existence has long passed. Working conditions are largely mandated by law and the vast majority of employers compete for good employees.

Razberry accurately describes unions as having “developed weapons” and we’re seeing those weapons deployed by the B.C. Teachers Federation today.

Following two months of leisure, this union is confronting their employer with ‘work to rule’ measures, using children as pawns in an attempt to achieving the union’s usual demand of more money for less work.

If both teachers and parents had true freedoms including employment independence, merit pay and vouchers or charter schools, I’d be willing to bet that both they and their children would be happier and better served.

Randy O’Donnell

Nanaimo