For the past two years, the Republican Party has waged an unholy war against America’s unions. From Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker‘s union-busting measures falsely disguised as a budget-balancing emergency, to repeats of anti-union legislation around the country, the GOP, including Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, have attempted to paint union members, aka, your children’s teachers, the people who risk their lives daily to save yours, as “thugs” and “freeloaders.”
And then came Hurricane Sandy, a superstorm that plunged millions into darkness, cold, and flooding, a superstorm that killed at least 113 people, a superstorm that forced millions of American from both parties to rely on the very union workers — mostly police and fire — that the GOP has spent two years attacking.
As I read on Twitter or Facebook the other day, the list of Republicans who refused help from union workers or FEMA officials stands at zero.
“On his nationally syndicated talk radio program Friday, Sean Hannity played audio of what he said were union workers in New York City yelling ‘Scabs!’ and ‘Scumbags!’ at nonunion utility workers who came to [New York City] to help reconnect power lines after Hurricane Sandy,” the Daily Caller reported:
“That’s who you hurt, scumbags! That’s who you fucking hurt! Scumbags!” a loud voice on the audio recording is heard shouting. ”Fuck all of you fucking losers! That’s who you hurt! You’re taking it from our families! Good jobs!”
“Go back where you came from! Look at her face! Scab! Look at her face, scab! That’s who you’re hurting, scab! You feel good tonight? Go home, you bunch of scabs! That’s who you’re hurting! Taking our jobs! That’s who you’re hurting, scabs! You’re hurting families!”
Hannity was outraged. “These are old people. They need heat. … Utility workers from Alabama, they get turned around,” he said.
But even the unscrupulous Daily Caller was forced to apologize and explain their report:
The Daily Caller has learned that the audio Sean Hannity played during his Friday, Nov. 2 broadcast was taken from a 2011 union protest against replacement workers during a Verizon strike. A YouTube video of the protest carries a description naming the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, local 827, as the source of the comments. That union local is based in East Windsor, N.J.
The Daily Caller regrets compounding the confusion.
So ugly is the misplaced anti-union hate on the right that Sean Hannity gets caught substituting audio and gets called on it by another right wing hack.
It’s time to remember — and thank — those who protect us.
And to give the GOP the boot.
Image by John M. Becker, used by permission.
We invite you to sign up for our new mailing list, and subscribe to The New Civil Rights Movement via email or RSS.