Last Thursday was a non-starter of protest, as the country’s illegal immigrants learned a hard rule of American entitlement.
“A Day Without an Immigrant” urged America’s illegal immigrants to boycott participation in public life. According to the promotional material, immigrants were urged not to attend work, open up their business, send their kids to school, attend school, or engage in any sort of commerce.
The day was supposed to be a giant middle finger to a country whose taxpayers provide millions of illegal residents free public education, access to government assistance including free food and health care, and unquestionably offers open citizenship to any of their children born here. Not to mention the country’s employers, who knowingly hire them for contract jobs, or routinely turn a blind eye to faked government documents needed for employment all the while working around language barriers, and paying them the same as any citizen performing the same job. But, America couldn’t live without them, could we?
There were no actual reports of how many people actually participated in the boycott, but it was estimated to be several thousand. But many of them, estimates are up to about 80, lost their jobs over the boycott.
In some large cities, restaurants and daycares were shuttered. In Denver, it was reported that some cafeteria workers in the schools failed to show up, and parents were horrified to hear the school had to call in fast food for the students.
But, beyond instances in the big cities, Ira Mehlman of the advocacy group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) toldthat the boycott really didn’t make much of a difference in other places.
“I don’t think the rest of the American public really noticed all that much,” he told WND. In fact, Mehlman believes that the labor force of low-paid workers is actually hurting American interest.
“Restaurants existed before we had large-scale illegal immigration. The economy adjusted to the presence of people who are in the country illegally. It will adjust to them leaving the economy as well.”
Many employers saw the entire statement as a slap in the face.
of JVS Masonry in Commerce City, Colorado, told he warned his employees that participation would have consequences.
“They were warned, ‘if you do this you’re hurting the company, and if you go against the team you’re not a member of the team.’”
He said he fired 30 bricklayers for not showing up for work Thursday. He told CNN that he treated his employees well, and even paid them when there wasn’t work. He didn’t appreciate the sentiment of going on strike.
“I’ve gone above and beyond for these people,”. “No one is going to dictate how my company is run.”
CNN also interviewed Steve Deese, a South Carolina boat manufacturer who fired 21 employees for not attending work. According to Deese, they violated policy by not showing up or calling. He told the network that his company exists “to make money, so when we can’t build boats, we don’t make money. We run an assembly line, and when 21 people call out, that seriously affects our operation.”
NBC reported that in some places the immigrant dynamic was divided. Ben Kosher’s Delicatessen and Caterers in Long Island for example, issued a statement saying they fired 25 workers. They had told their employees ahead of time that they needed to show up for their shifts as scheduled on Thursday.
“While some employees opted to participate in the walkout, several others chose to work and, as a result, the leaders of the protest put pressure on the others to walk out, even threatening physical harm to colleagues choosing to work their shifts,” the statement read. “[This] is a cause for immediate dismissal of the employees who made the threats. All other employees involved with the walkout were, and still are, invited to return to their positions with the company.”
Now, social media is calling for boycotts against places that chose to fire protesting immigrants.
Since Trump was elected, there have been many boycotts, such as the #GrabYourWallet boycott aimed at boycotting anywhere that supported Donald Trump. Then there was the Nordstrom boycott over the retailer pulling Ivanka’s clothing from its shelves. Starbucks received yet another boycott this year over wanting to hire refugees overseas. So, this latest boycott, wasn’t well-received.
“We’re just overrun with boycotts at the moment,” Brayden King, a Northwestern University professor who researches the effects of social movements on corporate behavior recently told. “We may be starting to see boycott fatigue.”
This isn’t the first time this boycott was enacted. It was done in 2006, and received about the same response.
At that time,, director of the Organized Labor Accountability Project of the conservative National Legal and Policy Center told CNS why such a boycott wouldn’t work.
“Our economy is just too big and diverse for any group, no matter how well organized, to have much of an impact,” he said.
However, Horowitz does admit to Fox6News that if illegal immigrants don’t do something about their current working conditions nothing will change. But, at the same time, they did break the law by getting into the country in the first place.
“It’s like someone who kills his parents then says ‘Hey, I want leniency, I’m an orphan,’” he said.
But American jobs are pretty clear–if you don’t show up, it doesn’t matter where you were born–you get fired. End of story.
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