A noisy racket at 7:40 a.m., on Wednesday September 14, 2011, in San Francisco's Embarcadero district was designed to remind guests at the hotel across from the Ferry Building at the foot of Market Street that they had crossed a picket line when they checked-in. It also reminded one columnist of some San Francisco history and that it was time to take some photos and to collect whatever tidbits of information about union busting were available and not worry about a topic for the next installment of his continuing series of assessments of contemporary American Pop Culture.
One of the strikers described a recent confrontation with a critical citizen passerby who disparaged the strikers' efforts. She replied by offering the opinion that by supporting the management's position he was actually supporting Osama bin Laden's efforts to destroy America's economy. The citizen went and got a cop to provide the arbitration for the street debate.
The early morning commotion included the use of a kazoo amplified by a bullhorn augmented by some chanting and a striker who used another bullhorn to state her grievances. Nearby some of the famed cable cars prepared to "climb half way to the stars." So did the noise level. (We have to fact check and see if it was Keith Moon who played drums on the recording of "Stairway to Heaven.")
Later on Wednesday (according to information found via a Google News search), the workers held a rally and agreed to return to work while continuing to express their grievances to company management.
San Francisco tourists (and some of the city's younger residents?) might be unaware of the fact that Fog City had been, during the Thirties, the site for one of the few general strikes in the annals of the American Labor movement. Do the folks, who are planning the protest in Washington D. C. for October 20 of this year, know about the general strike that was held in San Francisco?