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The 53 Percent, Progressive Era Edition

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I work in a plumassier – that’s a fancy word for “sweatshop.” I spend fourteen hours a days willowing ostrich feathers so that rich women can wear attractive hats. Because they want to wear these hats, I am able to HAVE A JOB. I used to make 15 cents an hour, but now there are so many young girls in the business that I only make seven or eight cents. The boss tells us that we will soon be paid only five cents.

BUT I DO NOT COMPLAIN, because I am determined to WORK HARD FOR EVERYTHING I HAVE.

Also, my boss will fire or rape me if I complain.

BUT I AM NOT A VICTIM.

The girl who used to work next to me got tuberculosis from inhaling all the dust and fluff from the feathers. But she did not expect the GOVERNMENT to pay for her health care while she recovered. Instead, she went out and got a job SEWING SLIPPERS during the day while her son PICKS OVER THE SWEEPINGS FROM COFFEE WAREHOUSES. They are saving up with THEIR OWN MONEY so she can have BOTH OF HER LUNGS COLLAPSED. This will leave her permanently short of breath and dizzy, but she will continue to WORK because that is the AMERICAN DREAM.

WE CAN DO ANYTHING IF WE SET OUR HEARTS TO IT. WE ARE THE 53 PERCENT.

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