A Call to Action
Copy of letter to be sent to the Canadian Labour Congress and other Canadian labour organizations
from Florence Richard
88 years old. Victoria BC, Canada
September 12, 2006
(reprinted with permission)
"Underlying all the surface changes of present-day history, the reality and paramount importance of a single basic event is becoming daily more manifest: namely, the rise of the masses, with its natural corollary, the socialization of [Human]kind."
--Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
A Call to Action:
The above statement was written more than fifty years ago. The writer was a man of science, paleontologist and catholic priest who's books were banned by his church and were not published until after his death.
His contention was, that all the pain, poverty, war and terror suffered by the many in our world, is a crucible we are obliged to navigate through, in order to arrive at our own unfolding and evolvement. It is a crucible of agony. It is unjust but it's the way it has been.
Humanity is a gregarious species. As we understand and anticipate our own potential as individuals, we feel the need to combine with others in order to fulfill our destiny. It is the dispossessed who must lead the way because, we have no choice, and there is no where else to go.
Those of us who grew up during the dirty thirties can remember when a quart of milk or a loaf of bread was less than ten cents. You could rent a three or four bedroom house for $20.00 a month. However, the poor were in the same position then as the poor are now. If one has no money the goods are still out of reach.
Our city streets today are teeming with the homeless, while food prices rise and rents are out of sight. Some people are working twelve or more hours every day, at several different jobs, in an attempt to pay rent and buy necessities. Those who are on welfare or without any source of income are begging on the streets. This continues while provincial and national governments boast of unprecedented surpluses, and Big Business racks up profits soaring into the billions of dollars.
It makes no sense to keep plundering our natural resources, to make more widgets which nobody needs or wants and then spend more millions drumming up sales for said widgets. This is not only wasteful of our earthly treasures, it is unconscionably wasteful of human resources and human spirit.
What is urgently required is a Guaranteed Livable Income.
In order to achieve this end, we need a detailed plan for implementing a new economy and social order.
We need qualified economists, and professional personnel involved in social development, who can create a 'position paper.' A treatise that will be readily understandable to the average reader, the person literally on the street. It must also be presentable to any, and all, organizations (churches, labour, poverty groups, women's organizations, and to all levels of political jurisdiction.
Some one has to help in this area. Will Unionized Labour take up the challenge? In this particular circumstance, there is no other source of enlightened thought and action to call upon. Organized Labour is the only militant force that knows the power and tenacity of the opposing forces. Due to their long experience and reality orientation, it would seem that their strategy-planning, and guidance role is predetermined.
88 years old. Victoria BC, Canada,
September 12, 2006
You may contact Florence via LIFE: email: email@example.com