Traverse City Record-Eagle

October 1, 2012

Letters to the editor: 10/01/2012


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A double standard

It was with slack-jawed amazement I read the Chamber View article on Sunday, Sept. 23. I find Mr. Luciani and the Chamber's double standard nothing short of amazing. In his article he extols the virtues of his association and other trade organizations to gather throughout the state to "carry the water" of harried business owners too busy to advocate for themselves. So he admits that he speaks for an association of businesses with a full time staff hired to represent its membership. That sounds suspiciously similar to what a labor union does. This is the amazing part. It seems that it's okay for the Chamber to form associations to push their agenda, but they don't think it's okay for labor to advocate for the rights of its members; leaders of organized labor get together "to carry the water" of their busy members, too. However, the Chamber opposes this collective action.

There are literally hundreds of associations that exist "to debate the issues" impacting members. Humans associate, unionize, organize, whatever you want to call it, for good reasons. Businesses, administrators, workers and others do it. All should have a seat at the table to bargain the best deal for their membership.

Jeff Leonhardt

Traverse City