Can you imagine a strike where the workers sit down instead of standing at a picket line? Most people can’t. Their used to seeing the usual picket line, with people walking and holding signs. But which way of striking do you think would hold the most power? I’m sure this is a question that with different people, would be an array of answers.
December 30th, 1936, the flint sit-down strike began. What this was was just that, workers sat down litterly on the job. If forced production to stop as workers sat right there at the production lines. There was no way for production to run with workers sitting down. And there was no way to just bring in other workers. As the sit-down strike continued many things happened. January 11th, 1937, heat to the building had been shut off again. At what they called the “battle of the bulls” they had 14 wounded strikers, but yet the strikers prevailed. January 12th brought on the national guard toting machine guns.
The sit-down strike with GM ended on February 11th, 1937, with GM signing a single page contract. The contract resulted in recognition of the united automobile workers. Workers were given a 5% pay increase and were allowed to talk during lunch. Next to follow suit was chrysler, who within a month had a signed contract. And in 1941 Ford, who apposed to unions, finally signed a contract with the UAW.
I think the new deal strengthened the union because workers now felt that if they stood together they could make their working environment better. During the strike I’m sure flint workers were feeling hopeful, but with every passing day were just wanting an agreement to be reached. In my opinion I think this new type of strike revolutionalized the way people were striking, only because they thought it would bring on less violence, even though it did not. Reading about the 1937 sit-down strike was very interesting, and it really makes you wonder that in todays day and age do you think a sit-down strike or a picket line would be more helpful? Though I’m sure there is alot of different views on this, what do you think?