Two times, the UAW tried to unionize the Nissan plant in Smyrna, Tennessee. Twice, the Union received a black eye. The UAW is trying a third time, this time counting on the fact that “an estimated 70 percent of the workforce is black,” says Reuters in a feature story on the UAW’s last ditch effort to gain relevance in the South.
“As the United Auto Workers embarks on an uphill battle to organize Nissan Motor Co’s plant in Mississippi, it is drawing inspiration from the famous struggle waged in the state during the civil rights movement.
The union sees a winning strategy in depicting the right to unionize freely as a basic civil right.”
The problem is, the winning strategy seems to go over the heads of the people it wants to connect with. Says Reuters:
“But the connection between civil rights history and the right to join a union or have a voice in work processes may be too abstract. Workers interviewed by Reuters, both for and against the union, said they simply have not thought about the civil rights link.”
Hate to say it, Bob King: You are no Martin Luther.