THE STATE OF THE UNION
Deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed
Our government was formed deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. The framers of our UAW as indicated by the imitating of the preamble of the U.S. Constitution also believed this to be so in forming the UAW. The similarity between the UAW Constitution Preamble and the U.S. Constitution Preamble should not be over looked. Institutions are created to serve people, not people to serve institutions. The work of maintaining our government, our Constitutional way of life, must be done by “We the People” the governed. This is also true for our union. These constitutions are the set of values and ethics in which the people are to live by. Our Country’s founding fathers as well as the framers of our union Constitution intended for men of high morals and values to sustain a nation or an organization. This is where the problem lies and the solution. We the people have failed in our responsibilities. We have forgotten the values that united us.
Our U.S. and UAW Constitutions place a Creator, a Supreme Being, as the one who give us, “the people”, worth. We are the center, not institutions. When an organization begins to form, leaders are chosen from the ranks. The ones who were chosen were the standouts. They were the ones while engaging in the endeavors of the cause, were embraced by those whom they fought along side with. The people chose. In the election of our International Officers, the people do not chose. The system that is supposed to give the people a choice has been tainted. We see this during every changing of the guards. The successor is chosen before the people even vote. So if those whom have tainted the system have lost sight of the intentions of the principles of UAW, who is responsible to right it? It is up to “We the People” to right it. The question of sustaining the union is a question then of what sort of people we must be.
It is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it
As the founding father of our country wondered how this Republic would be maintained, this question must have gone through the minds of the UAW framer mind as well. Decadence, vices and selfishness destroyed Republics as well organizations. This is why we have a Constitution. To give us a set of values and morals which curb individual selfishness. To define a commitment that requires sacrifice of our self-interests and individual attachments for the sake of common interests and public good. The work of maintaining this organization would have to be done by individuals of decent and reasonable character. Individuals prepared with the right disposition and strong beliefs in what the framer intentions were.
Ben Franklin said this in the Declaration of Independence “In every stage of these Oppression we have petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms. Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury.”
This is the place where we are at in our union. For years, now our union officials have lost sight of the people. We have loss jobs. We have given concessions. We have sacrificed our health in the name of Productivity, Jointness, only to maintain a Bureaucratic machine sustaining itself for its own sake and not for the sake of the members. It has become a corporate union and a corporation in itself. Those who speak out and stand up for themselves are often ostracized, harassed and intimidated. As Ben Franklin put it in the Declaration of Independence, “A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.”
We are at war. We cannot be watering down our message, trying not to offend the Bureaucrats. We need to call A, an A. Our union is weak and a big part of the problem is “Union Bureaucracy”. Our U.S. and UAW Constitution states that; “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights”. That our values and morals are derived from a Supreme Being who holds humans, and human relationships in high regard. In so much that, we are endowed with certain unalienable rights. We are the definers of our own destiny. We should have actions and behaviors that typify these truths. We need to develop a membership who has union values that bring about actions that will change the world. We who know must be the example and to hold on to the beliefs and develop the character and disposition that has made these institutions great. We who know must educate and inform others. For “A true Democracy is maintained by a people knowledgeable and honest enough to govern themselves or at least select responsible and knowledgeable officials to govern them.” The U.S. framers intended schools and homes to be places where we would learn our civic responsibility. This should be as well for our union.
“We the People” need to be united in common knowledge …So we can all make informed decision.
“We the People” need to be united in one cause against Bureaucracy…Democracy worse enemy.
“We the People” need to be united in a spirit of unselfishness…selfishness lead to destruction.
“We the People” need to be united in hope…that every contribution done for the good of this membership is necessary towards the maintenance of our union.
“We the People” are at war. We need to develop Soldiers, not career opportunist. It will take time and patience, there will be set backs and victories. Given time and effort the law of multiplication, we will prevail. If one goes out and trains two soldiers; and they go out and do the same, and this continues, we will have our army.
“We the People Are the Union”
Miguel X. Chavarria