• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Unions Do Fire Some People After All

    Unions have become famous — or infamous — for fighting against layoffs for any reason. Teachers unions have made it next to impossible to fire bad teachers. The union movement went ballistic when D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee laid off teachers who performed poorly in the classroom. They spent freely to defeat the re-election bid of the Mayor who appointed her.

    Unions believe that public school teachers should not fear losing their jobs, even if they fail at them. Nevermind that bad teachers hurt America’s children. The union movement believes they have a right to their job. There is almost nothing a worker can do that would lead his union to believe he should get fired.

    Nothing, that is, except disagree with his union.

    Duane Hammond, a member of International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Union Local 33, had a job helping build a stage for an upcoming Obama rally in Los Angeles. His union fired him because he wore a sweatshirt with the name “Bush” on it.

    Hammond’s son serves in the Navy aboard the aircraft carrier George H. W. Bush. A proud father, he wore a sweatshirt bearing the carrier’s image and name. That was too much for his union. They demanded he turn his sweatshirt inside-out. When he refused his union supervisor fired him from the job. If only unions were as passionate about quality education as they are about politics.

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    10 Responses to Unions Do Fire Some People After All

    1. Brad, Detroit, MI says:

      Classic. Liberals are all for free speech except when your opinion differs from theirs.

    2. Scott DeWitt, Lockpo says:

      This is just another one of many attacks supposedly pro-American unions are making on our first amendment rights (among others). I guess the first amendment can only be invoked when the position expressed by an individual fully and completely aligns with either the union's or the Bush-haters' views.

      Where is the ACLU on this? Apparently ignoring first amendment rights for the average white American who supports our military is not a problem. Rule of law no longer applies, but defacto rule by a thugocracy does. Given the DOJ's racial bias, why is this surprising?

    3. Steve, Ohio says:

      How do you torture an ACLU trial lawer? Force him to represent this union worker in a suit against the union for wrongful termination on the basis of patriotic expression of free speech. Oh the irony.

    4. Sam, WI says:

      Call me crazy, but I'm pretty sure that's grounds for a wrongful termination suit.

    5. Wes in cincy says:

      Democratic double standards from the top down

    6. Ken McIntyre KenMac55, Washington says:

      Perhaps NPR's Nina Totenberg will ride to Mr. Hammond's rescue?

    7. jim smith yonkers ne says:

      This just in.

      SEIU members will no longer be axed to pay for their personal baseball bats or sledge hammer/axe handles. Union management, using only their own bats, negotiated favorable terms from leading manufacturers of both bats and handles to provide these tools free. It's a great day for America!

    8. Debra Drummond, Iowa says:

      If this isn't a law suit then this isn't America…since when is there a law on what you can or cannot wear…this man is merely proud of his son which is fighting for this country…the country president Obama seems to keep apologizing for…do they even teach the Constitution in schools any more cause it seems many were absent when this was taught…freedom of speech…or has that changed too?

    9. Peg Cottle Phoenix A says:

      My dear Scott DeWitt, can you imagine if Duane Hammond was a black man? I think the union would have burned a cross in his yard and thrown a brick through his window. It's not about white or black, it's about liberal/leftists and the rest of us. I hope and pray (clinger that I am) that Duane Hammond sues the pants off them. God bless your son Mr. Hammond, don't loose faith in America. I am a Silver Star Marine Mom and proud of it.

    10. Jim - Pennsylvania says:

      Well it really wasn't an opinion, nor was it free speech. The man was wearing a sweat shirt. He owned the sweat shirt because his son served on that ship. What happened was the left's searing hatred for anything decent, anything right, anything lovely, anything at all that doesn't promote their vulgar declaration of the same. It didn't become a matter of free speech until a bigot hand-wringing, bed-wetting, panty-wearing liberal was offended by it.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.