Newsies, An Eye-Opening Experience; The Cruelty of Child Labor
Child Labor, a cruel and unjust issue that happens globally, which threatens the lives and the well being of many children during this time. It is a term used worldwide for the employment of children below a certain age, which is considered illegal by law and moral. The age regulations vary from country to country and depending onthe country’s legislation (laws also works here). This is an issue that is considered abusive and inhuman by many organizations, being a public dispute when the foundation of schools was arranged. Historically, it is believed that the transformation came as a consequence of the industrial revolution creating more jobs that were available to everyone, including children. Many of these children whowere working at such a young age were the fundamental (and most of the time) the only source of any economic wealth that a family receives. Their parents obligated most of them to work since they couldn’t afford to support them due to the bad economic times they lived in. The laws and regulations that were set in the past were often violated because of each person’s priority, without their childrenworking they were all most likely to die due to lack of necessary resources.
Around this time, the 1890’s – early 1900’s, children all around the world made their maximal effort to provide any sort of economic finance that could support their family’s well being. Many of their parents were incapable of completing their task due to various deficiencies caused by difficulties of the labor,requirements during their time period. Employers took advantage of children laborers to do specific tasks that were of a higher difficulty to adult laborers, and since they were children they didn’t receive the same amount of money as the adult laborers would. The children would be doing dangerous jobs for a low wage, generally a maximum of 10% -20% of an adult male’s wage.
However, there were manychild laborers that disagreed with the choices that the corporations had taken that affected their work benefits. For instance, the children disagreed with the little payment they received for the excessive work effort they applied to the task did (or used depends on you which you want to use). Generally, the children while in strikes asked for the equal wage and recognition as an adult laborer,nonetheless in really rare occasions you can find the children seeking for more than adult wage due to the more work effort they apply to the job. When this happened laborers generally had a strike in order to let the corporations acknowledge their discontentment and as a method to receive the support of the people. In the film Newsies in order to collect the support of the people they first madethem aware of the situation by printing flyers from an old printing press owned by Joseph Pulitzer and spread them around the city. Corporations however, to handle a situation as such, they generally used means of negotiation or when necessary violence. Authority figures used Roosevelt’s lemma; “Speak softly and carry a big stick.” Corporations see the decision of affronting the issue of strikeswith negotiation to be the most efficient and beneficial solution they can come up with. Still, there are cases such as in the film Newsies where it is shown that the children disagree with what the corporations or in this case Joseph Pulitzer has offered them. When a negotiation fails the corporations respond with violence since throughout history men have always recruited to violence as a“successful solution” for their problems.
Nevertheless, these means should not be applied as severely to adult laborers as to child laborers. Children don’t have the same efforts and reinforcement or backup that an adult laborer has. Adults can be supported and defended by their employment rights and can hide behind their corporation when something goes wrong. Children in on the other hand have no one...
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