Thursday, March 17, 2011

Just Another Rat

Whenever I go shopping and I see cheap shit made in foreign countries for slave wages, it really pisses me off. Those people are taking our goddam jobs from us! In America, cripples are the ones who are supposed to be making cheap shit for slave wages! It’s a grand tradition!

Ton of cripples still work in sheltered workshops. Whenever I see a wood doorstop I think about all the cripples who work in sheltered workshops because making wood doorstops seems like the kind of job a sheltered workshop would have its cripples do. A cripple cuts a block of wood down the middle kitty-corner and presto, two wood wedges. And then the cripple gets paid something like two cents per wedge.

A couple years ago a company called Henry’s Turkey Service got busted by an investigative reporter. He found that they were paying men with intellectual disabilities who worked full time gutting turkeys in a meat processing plant only 45 cents an hour.

Section 14c of the Fair Labor Standards Act allows companies to petition the U.S. Department of Labor for permission to pay certain disabled workers less than minimum wages. The companies have to make the case that the worker is less productive so should therefore be paid less. More than 400,000 American cripples are believed to be working for less than minimum wage.

But just because you suck at making doorstops doesn’t me you suck at everything. Put me on a doorstop assembly line and I’d be a fuck up too. I'm sure Stephen Hawking couldn't make a damn doorstop if his life depended on it. Why not take a little time to find out what a person does well and get them a job doing that?

It reminds me of the true story I read about a guy with Tourette Syndrome who filed an Americans with Disabilities Act employment discrimination lawsuit against the store that fired him. Of all the jobs they could’ve had this guy do, somebody decided to make him the store greeter. So naturally, when someone overweight entered, for example, he’d say something like, “Welcome to the store, fat ass.” He couldn’t help it. And after he peppered a few racial and ethnic slurs into his salutations, he was canned. And he lost his lawsuit because the court concluded that an essential function of the job of store greeter is not calling customers fat asses.

But what I want to know is, who the hell is the Rhodes Scholar genius who decided to make him a greeter? Why didn’t someone sue that person for being an idiot?

All this proves once again something that I’ve always said: cripples are just like minks. There are plenty of do-gooders who would love to liberate all the minks, let them roam free in the wild. They think it’s deplorable that the only reason we nurture minks is because we want their pelts. But I ask you, in a capitalist society, if we can’t skin a mint for its pelt, then what’s the value of a mink at all? It becomes just another rat.

The same goes for all the cripples who make cheap shit for slave wages. They give up their pelts because, well, what other choice do they have? If the rest of us don’t care enough to buy American when we go shopping for cheap shit made for slave wages, what will become of them?

They’ll become just another rat.