17 October 2013

A Surprize Prize

I noticed that the Roosevelt Institute had given its bi-annual Four Freedoms Awards for 2013. I am not terribly impressed by awards of this sort. They typically recognize individuals who make some kind of humanitarian contribution whether those individuals be political leaders, clergy, journalists, human rights advocates or whatever. Nothing wrong with that. But the focus tends to be on individuals. And the emphasis tends to be on humanitarianism (which I take to be an ethical stance) not politics. This year, along with a set of deserving individuals the folks at the Roosevelt Institute have surprisingly given the award to the Coalition of Immokalee Workers an organization of workers that presses campaigns for fair wages, improved working conditions, and so forth. In the process they contribute to the empowerment of workers in ways that most liberal foundations go out of their way to avoid.

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