Not “Burger-Flippers”, We’re PEOPLE

Workers were met by cops in riot gear at McDonald's HQ. Over 100 were arrested.

Workers were met by cops in riot gear at McDonald’s HQ. Over 100 were arrested.

 

For nearly a year now, class consciousness within the food and service industries has been rising. Those people considered “ignorant” by the bourgeoisie and its cronies have been planning, organizing, standing up, and demanding a wage that they more than deserve. These “low-life burger-flippers”, as the capitalists call them, are making their voices heard, in an attempt to dismantle the stigmatization that comes with lower-level wage jobs.

What the anti-worker internet pundits need to realize is that lacking a corporate or professional career does not make one any less of a human. These “burger-flippers” need food, housing, clothes, just like the rest of society. They need to take proper care of their children. They need to have shelter and water and a way of allowing their cells to reproduce and function, just like you. It’s a testament to bourgeois moral decay that this even needs to be pointed out. And if those things don’t worry you – if the lives of the vast majority of society doesn’t worry you – then stop taking part in society altogether. We don’t want or need you, just like you believe you don’t need food prepared for you.

I am not trying to exaggerate when I say that all of those whining about fast food workers standing up for what they deserve have been to a fast food restaurant many, many times in their life. They partake of the consumption of products made by labor they are now ridiculing. Then they act as if their order being incorrect ” a whole lotta times” means the thousands of workers currently taking a stand against oppression don’t deserve to live even the slightest bit comfortably. Oh no, they all must pay for giving a consumer of their product one less taco than was requested!!

This bourgeois elitist bashing of the working class is centered on the dehumanization of the oppressed. This is a classic move by the bourgeois media and the culture it controls; it is used to demonize every oppressed group which chooses to rise up and fight back. When Michael Brown was shot six times by police while unarmed and 35 feet away, the media portrayed him as a “suspected criminal”, even though the officer who shot him did not, at the time of the murder, know of the alleged shoplifting(which has also been proven to have not been committed). The following insurrection by the citizens of Ferguson, MO. was also demonized by the media as a “riot” full of “looters”. This is an attempt to portray the rebellious masses as animals – something less than human.

The exact same policy of dehumanization is being used to make the needs of these thousands of fast food workers seem totally unimportant. As if their work isn’t work at all, that what they produce is of no use(and I already mentioned the hypocrisy in fast food customers ridiculing the labor that creates the product being consumed). The media will never and has never touched upon the fact that, no matter the essence of the work itself, the laborers are still being exploited through wage-slavery. They need a job to survive — any job. The capitalist class, which owns production but does not produce, controls who, what and when a laborer can have access to the basic means of survival. The working class, in a capitalist society, relies on the parasitic bourgeoisie for employment, and the bourgeoisie profits from the labor of the toiling class, while giving its servants just enough to stay alive and continue working. The bourgeoisie relies just as much, if not more so, on the proletariat than vice versa. The workers produce the services and commodities which create the profit for the bourgeoisie.

But these labor-hating people have no issue with the owners of the fast food industry, only the workers. Only those who create the massive amounts of surplus value. The corporate owners of these chains are, in the eyes of the reactionaries, perfectly “respectable”, despite producing nothing whatsoever. Only those needing to sell their labor power(to become wage-slaves) are the targets of the oh-so-hard-working oppositionists. Only the people who carry the world on their shoulders while receiving only the smallest scraps of that which they created.

The myths of fast food workers all being “uneducated” lazy bums are borne from the bourgeois shrugging off of the needs of the people. Over 80% of fast food workers have graduated highschool, and over 90% of them have more than one job. It would be rather interesting to hear what a hater would say after trying the job out for themselves. To sell your labor, your time, you life, to a non-productive overseer for a wage barely enough to keep you alive.

I have had almost every kind of entry-level job imaginable. Currently, my labor is being sold within the food industry, and I am barely getting by. I am not one to sit back while some overpaid professional tells me I don’t work hard enough.

To all of those whining about others trying to fight their way to a better life: stop stuffing your mouth with the food made by the people you are bashing. Stop giving your opinion on an issue that does not affect your life in the least. You are only showing your weakness to falling for a media biased along class lines. You are only proving your ignorance, your lack of empathy, your naive support for the dictatorship of capital.

None of this is to say that higher wages will fix the problem of capitalist enslavement of the majority of the population. But the question of livable wages, as I have heard a comrade put it, is like the Litmus Test for human decency. If you oppose the working class getting at least a portion of what they deserve – what they create – then you are taking a side. The side of the oppressors, exploiters, the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie.

 

-SFB

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