In the current climate of rampant, high-profile antisemitism (Galiano, Gibson, etc.), war on unions (Wisconsin), and the attack of women’s health rights, the centennial anniversary of the tragic Triangle Factory fire of 1911 seems eerily apropos.
The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire was a tragic culmination of long standing inadequate fire and safety codes, and American willful ignorance of the exploitation of the immigrant / Jewish / female work force that largely comprised the garment and textile industries. Unfortunately, the unions that gained so much momentum as a direct response to the Triangle Factory fire have been on the descent, and are under aggressive attack in current legislature. But let me backtrack.