What a powerful word–union. It makes us think we are united with others, in association and in alliance.
But what happens when the strength is not shared between members. When links in the chain are broken or worn down?
What happens when leadership within those guilds (I see the synonym and like it) choose to advance the causes of their fathers and mothers, their fathers and mothers and the generations before them, which I know is rooted in security for them and their family…not mine? When memberships is tied to that history dictates the stories that will be told and the hands that will guide the lenses…what do we do? It is not lost on me that this Hollywood tale is not unlike what we see in law enforcement or teaching…in 1906, Black teachers stood together, sixty years later they were subsumed, fifty years later, where are we now, fifty plus one year later–we are only at the committee stage of any resolution acknowledging a culture of white supremacy among our ranks?
It is now 2020…at the beginning of a new school year…and I am not sure how unionizing is working, for anyone. Do we ask for life insurance coverage for the certain loss ahead? Do we organize in smaller cells who have our family’s best interest at heart? Black and Brown families. Poor families. Working class families. My families. I am all of these and none.
When unions make us stronger, we feel like gold braided into a plait, only seen when the queen sporting woven crown turns her head in the sunlight…