Labor Day


25th STREET AND EIGHTH AVENUE, 5:20 P.M.–Conversation with Dave (Black) and Tommy (Caucasian), electricians and sign hangers, at the New York City Central Labor Council Labor Day rally.

Q: Why are you here today?
Dave: To show support for the unions.
Tommy: Tell her the real reason.
Dave: Oh, no, man!
Tommy: Because Uncle Dree made us. The union made us come.

Q: What do you think of the convention coming here to New York?
Dave: It’s probably good for business in the city. It really doesn’t matter where the convention goes, cause we’re going to beat them in November.

Q:Are you going to be working to get out the vote?
Dave: Yes, in my neighborhood, the Bronx.
Tommy: Yes.

Q: What do you think about all the protesters?
Dave: I wish people didn’t have to get arrested for the cause. But I’m glad they’re out there expressing their beliefs.

Q: What do you think of this rally?
Tommy: They need to get Willie Nelson the fuck off the stage! (Steve Earle, actually, who is singing a song about coal miners in Kentucky).

Dave: Come on, man. She’s trying to work here. Be serious.
Tommy: Seriously, they should stop singing and talk more about voting. It’s no celebration here. We got to get down to business.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 1, 2004

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