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Another American tradition fadesPosted Friday, August 1, 2008, at 3:06 PM
How far do we go?
Tyson Foods takes away the Labor Day holiday so Muslim workers can take a day off.
Just another example of how Americans are being forced to submit to a foreign culture while foreigners make no effort to submit to ours.
Once again, American traditions are pushed aside.
And Shelbyville's immigrant situation returns to the news. This (Friday) afternoon, city police were called to Tyson Foods to keep TV news crews off the grounds. Imagine, taxpayers' dollars, in a sense, being forcibly used to keep media from fully telling a story. I'm not in any way criticizing police for answering the call; they were just doing what they were asked. But Tyson has no business trying to keep a story from being fully told.
It's too bad that those who raise chickens for Tyson in Bedford County have to suffer for the undesirable attention some employees of the plant itself attract.
Some of the criticism of Hispanics and Somalis in Bedford County brings out the worst in a few people -- anger, threats of protests and boycotts -- but those feelings can be understood. There's a big difference between foreigners adapting to American culture and newcomers who impose their own ways upon others. And I'd suggest many longtime Bedford Countians want their voices to be heard, rather than ignored.
I attended a Tennessee Press Association seminar a few weeks ago on business news coverage in smaller communities. For much of the program, though, the moderator described his (and many others') views of right and wrong ways of industrial recruitment. I'll do a column on this soon and link it to my blog.
But the "right" way involved encouraging -- financially, when possible -- local and area residents to found their own smaller industries rather than building large 'spec' buildings and chasing traditional industries, as Shelbyville officials continue to do.
Such a plan, in addition to keeping tax dollars at home, means homegrown industries are more likely to employ hometown people. It's something to think about.
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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.
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