As summer comes to an end and we look ahead to the Labor Day holiday weekend, it seems fitting to remember Cesar Chavez and the struggle for farmworkers rights, encapsulated beautifully in Stuart A. Kallen’s We Are Not Beasts of Burden: Cesar Chavez and the Delano Grape Strike, California, 1965-1970 (TFCB, 2010). And lest we think the struggle for workers rights is over, Alison Marie Behnke’s Up for Sale (TFCB, new for Fall 2014) gives a sobering overview of human trafficking around the world, inclusive of trafficking for sex, body parts, human labor, babies, and more. Kirkus gives the book a star review, noting that, “This. . .volume makes clear the grinding reality of the cheapest labor and presents a welcome chance to act.”
Labor Day is a time to relax, enjoy a picnic or barbecue with family and friends—and to remember the work that others have done before us to secure the rights and privileges from which we benefit. Enjoy the weekend!