It's Called Solidarity...Don't Cross Picket Lines!!  

Crossposted at Dailykos

I’ve been watching the writer’s strike and wondering how to get the studios to come back to the table and negotiate, I mean really negotiate. But why should they if they can produce Family Guy without its creator and big names like Ellen DeGeneres are willing to cross picket lines and produce their shows?

Yep, I said it, Ellen.

Despite what Mr. John Ridley might have you believe, Ellen is completely indefensible.

What Ellen is, is an individual responsible for keeping her television program on the air and securing the livelihoods of some 135 people she has on staff. One hundred and thirty-five people who would find themselves out of work, without paychecks and -- with both a strike on and a holiday season approaching -- not many prospects for making money.

One hundred, thirty-five people.

So, that got me to thinking, why is The View still on the air? Why are the soaps? They should now being having difficulty producing scripts and all of those actors and hosts are crossing picket lines in order to produce these shows?

Here’s what ABC had to say:

To our loyal fans:
As you may have heard, television and film writers are now on strike.
We want you to know that this action will have no immediate impact on your favorite ABC daytime dramas. The shows you love will stay on schedule as planned with original episodes well into next year. As for your favorite talk show, "The View," there will be no interruption there either.
In the meantime, we'll keep you updated on this site with any new information as it becomes available. We appreciate your commitment to our shows and our network, and we'll do everything in our power to continue to deliver the best stories and entertainment on television.

How is it possible? How is this possible? The View and Ellen and all the other talk shows that utilize writers from the Guild should no longer be on the air, but they are. So, there are scab writers out there. But the scab nature of the writers isn't what really caught me with Mr. Ridley's post, it was this interesting tidbit:

Such tactics are the equivalent of strapping on ideology, and walking into a crowded room to indiscriminately unleash philosophical fury with no regard to who is left maimed: a grip, or cameraman. A make-up, or craft service artist. Those who so many often refer to in the worst of paternalistic pejoratives: "The little people." Tiny, helpless individuals who will either forcibly accept the "goodwill" of others, or be crushed by the collectivism which claims to want to protect them. …
If the leadership and membership of the guild wish to strike regardless of who loses their job or their ability to provide for their family, that is their right. But I would ask that they not vilify those who will not concede their moral obligations to group think. [emphasis mine]

I continue to support the guild by not working during the strike. However, added to my display of support will now be the daily viewing of the Ellen DeGeneres Show.

Mr. Ridley, what you so lovingly call group think, I call SOLIDARITY.

The worst part about being an American in the labor movement is to have to continually explain to everyone I talk to about this, that in the US, we don’t have the right that they do in Europe, we can’t call a general strike. We can’t support the strike of our brothers and sisters, we can’t do a “secondary boycott.” The thing is, you should know this Mr. Ridley, and I think you do, you just don't care.

So, let me break this down for you. What Ellen and ABC and Fox are doing is something that the BOSSES have gotten away with for years, divide and conquer. The tactic is to shine a light on anyone collaterally affected by a strike and make them the more aggrieved party to the strike.

And this isn't a new tactic. Anyone remeber the air traffic controllers strike? The argument goes, it’s the customer, it’s the small business owner, it’s the caterer, the hair stylist or the makeup artists.

The problem is that with this argument in the Writer's Strike is that you miss all the other strikes going on right now. Are the stylists any different than the orderlies when the West Virginia Nurses Association and the Kentucky Nurses Association went on strike on Sept. 30 at 9 Appalachian Regional Healthcare hospitals? Orderlies need to work, care for families. What about the Drs in those hospitals, how do they feed their families?

Lest Mr. Ridley forgets the weary business person who must now eat street vendors foods because workers with Aramark are on strike in New York City. This strike affects the businesses who supply Aramark, where’s your indignation Mr. Ridley?

What about the collateral affects on the stage community when the stage hands voted to strike last week?

Scripts are being produced for The View, Ellen, Soaps, Family Guy and many other shows. Showing solidarity and not crossing picket lines is the least that Ellen can do. This strike doesn’t just affect the 135 people you have identified, it also affects her writers, cafeteria workers at Aramark, nurses in Kentucky and West Virginia and it even affects the so called “little” people who work the stages in New York. It’s called solidarity. Strikes affect all of us. They aren't to be taken lightly nor should the crossing of picket lines.

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