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Workers at online retailer walk out over sales to detention-camp contractor

Wayfair worker holding sign reading Endless Detention is Torture

A couple of hundred workers at Wayfair, the online home-goods concern headquartered at Copley Place, walked over to Copley Square this afternoon to protest the company's contract with a contractor that runs border detention camps.

As they walked into the plaza in front of Trinity Church, they were greeted with applause by supporters who had heard about the protest on either local or national media.

Wayfair workers walking into Copley Square
Wayfair workers walking into Copley Square
Wayfair workers walking into Copley Square

Among the Wayfair workers who spoke was Tom Brown, who said the protest showed that the company hires the best people, who "care the most."

Wayfair worker addresses the crowd
Wayfair protester with concentration-camp sign
Wayfair protester with family-separation sign

Just before the Wayfair protest started, there was another protest, against Fidelity Investments, in Dewey Square, over its alleged Islamophobia.

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Comments

First off, lets stop calling them concentration camps. This type of rhetoric is despicable and does nothing productive. Obama housed detainees in virtually same facilities(including Fort Sill) yet where no one was referring to them as concentration camps.

Second, the furniture(hopefully including beds) will be used to improve the conditions at these camps, so are these employees protesting providing beds for these children?

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"A place where large numbers of people, especially political prisoners or members of persecuted minorities, are deliberately imprisoned in a relatively small area with inadequate facilities, sometimes to provide forced labor or to await mass execution."

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Gotta love the crocodile tears about calling them concentration camps. This coming from the party that coined the term "death panels."

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Don't forget "Death tax." Yeah, the right wing in this company is deeply concerned about misusing language.

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First, they're concentration camps. Calling them something else is what the people operating the camps would like you to do so the public doesn't perceive them as being as bad as they are. The term "concentration camp" is well-defined and correctly describe the facilities we're talking about.

Second, it's very easy to learn what they're protesting about. It's mentioned in no less than two posts on this site, including the one you commented on. Or news stories all over the internet.

It's easy to say a bunch of dumb BS when you're hiding as an anon commenter, isn't it?

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concentration camps.

Concentration camps, plus AOC's invocation of "never again" connote the Nazi genocide of nearly ten million by means of facilities ("concentration camps") built and equipped specifically for the systematic murder of those sent there.

The United States Government is not conducting a genocide on the southern border and the detention facilities run under the auspices of DHS and HHS are not built and equipped for the purpose of murdering the detainees.

This is not occupied France and you are not La Resistance!

You are delusional children with no understanding of morality or of history.

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Forcing children to sleep under conditions where light is never turned off is documented as torture. So okay, I won't call them concentration camps; I'll call them torture camps.

By the way, what do you think of not allowing the kids to sleep as they need to sleep? What do you think of treating children - young human beings - worse than criminals?

Roman: You can not win here. You prove yourself to be as humane and kind as Catholic inquisitors.

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It totally won't make things worse.

Honestly, how difficult is it to think more than ten seconds into the future? From what I'm hearing from your side, you'd think five seconds of forethought was above average, nine extraordinary, and ten or more impossibly superhuman.

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Will not make reading any of Roman's comments worth the effort. He's admitted being a troll, and he's a particularly verbose one. His only goals here are to waste our time and excite a reaction.

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nor a red voter (in fact I'm a west coast hippie and 1st generation chicano so I DO feel strongly about this particular issue) but Roman does seem to often get shouted down on here and usually when/if he does make a decent point, it's not argued with effectively (or at all) and sometimes even just devolves into someone name-calling, insulting, or even threatening him or her. How are we ever going to bridge the divide if we respond this way? It incites more "ya but they're worse" from both sides.

Just something to think about.

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Yeah no, his drivel is still posted and readable for all, if you choose to do so. No ones shouting him down.

What we are doing is reminding everyone, new and old readers of UHub, that Roman is not here to bridge an divides or offer intellectually honest debates. Its also hilarious to suggest that anybody is going beyond keyboard warfare and legitimately threatening Roman.

I'd suggest that they've never made an honest, decent point around here. Why should we pander to clowns like that?

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Concentration camps were invented by the British for use in Africa during Empire . The name was first coined during the Boer War when Lord Kitchener used them. It brought down the government of the day. To think that our moral standard an now behind that of the Victorian era is stunning.

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Concentration camps, by that name, were first invented and used in Cuba during the Spanish-American War.

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"Roman," who literally said, "Cry me a trail of tears" speaking about people wanting to make our state flag less racist to native americans says "you are delusional children with no understanding of morality or of history."

I think it's fair to say Roman is either:

A. Magnificently unaware of his own extremely ignorant and blinkered world-view.

B. A racist troll who has no interest in arguing in good faith.

or

C. Both

I can't think of any other options, can you, "Roman?"

Source: https://www.universalhub.com/comment/730086#comment-730086

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I'm not a person for whom

1. military conquest for the purpose of what was then a competition for resources

is morally equivalent to

2. rounding up and killing one's own civilians for purposes of ethnic pride

which certainly is not morally equivalent to

3. apprehending and detaining people who violate a law. A law that nearly every government the world over has some form of.

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Thank you, "Roman," for perfectly illustrating point A: Magnificently unaware of his own extremely ignorant and blinkered world-view, by calling the genocide of native american people: "a competition of resources"

But it's also pretty racist, so I think C: Both is the most applicable

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It is perfectly legal for people to show up at the boarder to apply for and claim asylum, as others have pointed out and you seem to consistently ignore.

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"but Obama".. typical reply for people who cannot have a intelligent response. Its deflection.

But I'll bite

But Obama didn't deny these kids healthcare or personal hygiene.
But Obama didn't force adults in standing room cages and let them eat baloney sandwiches. But Obama didn't force them not to touch or console each other.
But Obama didn't stop them from using pencils and pens because they are cutting themselves
But Obama didn't have an administration that is MAKING MONEY off these Camps.
But Obama isn't using these kids as political pawns to get his "immigration policy", which we all know is just funding for Cat Food Brain's wall.

So please take your "but Obama" comment, fold it in four corners and shove it where "but Obama" belongs.. your ahole.

But let's talk further about the usage of "Concentration Camps". It isn't the PLACE where they are, it's how they are treated. Remember, the Nazi's didn't start gassing people at first. They first degraded them and dehumanized them for the general public to hate.Then they started locking them up. Then came the withholding of food and medical treatment.

This is where we are now.

Are we going to start building trains so we can send them all to the gasses? Is this where we reach peak MAGA? I mean its nearly the next step.

So let's call these what they are. Concentration Camps. Because anything else, is the GOP narrative trying to down play our own gov't abusing children.

But yes they are Concentration Camps that are funded by your tax dollars at a rate of $775/day PER CHILD.

That's over 23k a month. You could rent a AirBnB in one of those luxury buildings for a MONTH for that price. But no, instead a small portion goes to the kids welfare (or lack there of), and the rest goes into whoever is running those camps. Just follow the money.. John Kelly, ex-Trump staffer, now sits on the board of the company that runs those camps. (Source). And of course, everyone's favorite witch.. Betsy DeVos, well her family has a hand in this too via Bethany Christian Services (adoption agency) (Source).

So yeah, your tax dollars are being used to keep kids in camps, then the administration is MAKING MONEY OFF locking up children. And of course, they want to 'round up' more people.. so you guessed it.. they can charge the tax payers even MORE money. If they were just going to deport them, just fucking deport them. But months (and some, years) in one of these camps.. its obvious they are keeping them there to milk the tax payers as much as possible.

So yeah they are Concentration Camps, the 2019 version. Evil has figured out how to put a price tag on everything and make money off abusing children.

WHY AREN'T PEOPLE MORE UPSET ABOUT THIS? Your tax dollars are being used to fund inhumane treatment and abuse of CHILDREN.

(oh right, because "the shouldn't be here".. typical reply. I guess its OK then to abuse children by you. RIGHT? RIGHT? If you think this OK, you have no soul and should go jump off the Tobin bridge.)

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Jailing journalists...check
Using the IRS to go after his political enemies...check
Kids in cages...check
Tens of billions of dollars to Iran...check
Soft on what little actual communism there still was in the world during his terms...check
Gutting of due process rights in higher education...check
Inviting the Russians into Syria...check
Pardoning convicted violent revolutionaries...check

What a terrible president. It will take decades to fix the damage he caused.

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It turns out the IRS was not focused only on conservative groups. Your other claims? Money which always belonged to Iran as part of the agreement to keep Iran from becoming a power of nuclear weapons.

Admit it: You like violence, have no qualms about lies and in general just want attention.

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An admitted troll. Nothing he writes is honest argument.

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for this being starts with an R, end with a D and rhymes with hard. Hey, if it will resolve to flames, we flame it back.

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"Rard?" wow, what a weird insult. Never heard that one before. SURELY, of course, you cannot be referring to a DIFFERENT word that starts with 'r' and ends with 'd,' which would be both a) incredibly unimaginative and b) equally offensive.

There's no use making yourself making yourself look bad while you try to bring someone else down.

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I disagree. I often find myself agreeing with Roman and I notice he gets many up votes.

People have different opinions, learn to live with it.

Also, just because a few posters here claim everyone that voted for Trump, watches Fox news, drives a car, or does anything disagreeable is a Nazi. It is not true, these people aren't actual Nazi's. It's only the posters fevered imagination.

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Also, just because a few posters here claim everyone that voted for Trump, watches Fox news, drives a car, or does anything disagreeable is a Nazi.

Literally nobody here has ever said that. That means you're arguing against a straw man -- or actually, a straw crowd, since you claim there are a few such people. Then you go on to insist that none of the Trump-voting Fox-viewing etc. are Nazis. It's your own fevered imagination on display here.

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The US invented concentration camps.

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to kill black people.

I know.

Go back to whatever it is you were smoking.

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Nah.

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Pretty much every single one of your points is either wrong or completely made up. These detention centers were built during Obama's admin. For you to defend Obama is ridiculous. For you to whimper "what about" merely displays your hypocrisy. You couldn't have cared less about those people while Obama was president. Now under Trump you discover morals, ethics and compassion. BS.

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You couldn't have cared less about those people while Obama was president. Now under Trump you discover morals, ethics and compassion. BS.

Do you know me? I don't think you do. So don't make generalizations about someone you do not know. If you did know me, you'd realize I've had morals, ethics, and compassion for a long time. Long before Obama was ever around.

But nah, making digs at me on subjects you just don't know just makes you feel better i guess.

But as far as " For you to defend Obama is ridiculous. "

I feel the same way about anyone who defends Trump these days. Sorry, you can continue to say "how horrible Obama" was all you want, but he won't even come close to how bad Trump is. Sorry that you're just to blind to see that but go on, keep supporting him. It'll just make it even harder later.

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First off, lets stop calling them concentration camps.

No. If you don't want to call them concentration camps, which is what they are, then don't call them that. But you are the boss of NOBODY.

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I’m no expert on the subject, but I’m under the impression that people in concentration camps had no options at all and were dragged there...

These people willfully broke the law by choosing to cross another country’s border. They could’ve tried to enter the country legally or just stayed home altogether, and then voila... no detainment. It’s almost like magic.

What did I miss, oh wise one?

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What did I miss, oh wise one?

Don't be a dickhead.

Second, consider the story in the news this week of the photo of the man and his daughter who died trying to cross the river.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/27/politics/ken-cuccinelli-drowned-father-da...

Tania Vanessa Ávalos, Oscar's wife and Angie Valeria's mother, told the Mexican newspaper La Jornada that her family had grown increasingly desperate. Temperatures reached over 110 degrees at the migrant camp in Matamoros, Mexico, where the family had been waiting to present themselves at a US port of entry and seek asylum, she said.

These people aren't doing this out of convenience and they're certainly not leaving their countries on decisions on a whim. They're doing this because their situation is dire in their home country and they're trying to find a better means of life, and the US isn't making it by any means as easy as you think it is to even legally apply for asylum.

Try having some empathy instead of being a faux tough guy keyboard warrior.

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I know sociopaths think it's not cool to bring up the holocaust to describe the ongoing horror at the border...but I'm going to bring up the holocaust.

There was once a whole ship of jewish refugees coming here in 1939. These desparate people were also trying to enter the US illegally. To quote Dougie 1001:

"These people willfully broke the law by choosing to cross another country’s border. They could’ve tried to enter the country legally or just stayed home altogether, and then voila... no detainment. It’s almost like magic."

https://www.history.com/news/wwii-jewish-refugee-ship-st-louis-1939

I wonder what happened to them when their boat was sent back?

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Mike Godwin (yeah, the same one of Godwin's Law), responded to Chris Hayes on Twitter recently agreeing with calling the detention centers "concentration camps."

Source for that: https://twitter.com/sfmnemonic/status/1141125878874877953

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Ignore the border laws, let every single person in, don’t vet anybody, and if anybody commits a criminal act later on, we just deal with the aftermath.... after all, some of these people are legitimate asylum seekers.

Sounds awesome.

By the way, not to shit on the people you referenced in the article, but is the US the only country in the universe they could’ve escaped to? Was every other country a Nazi stranglehold and they had no other choice but to come here? I don’t get it.

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Ignore the border laws, let every single person in, don’t vet anybody, and if anybody commits a criminal act later on, we just deal with the aftermath.... after all, some of these people are legitimate asylum seekers.

Sounds awesome.

Sounds like a slippery slope. "Facts and logic" crowd, everyone.

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Yes, it is... that’s more or less what I was implying...

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I’m guessing you’ve never read that user’s comments to me over the years... not that you’d study the interactions, but my tone is consistent with what I’ve received.

Stop with the tough guy keyboard warrior criticism... you sound silly. I have empathy. Are you aware that not 100% of asylum seekers are truly seeking asylum? Did you know there are nefarious characters mixed in? I don’t expect you to see this on MSM, and you shouldn’t either. Do a little research. In your mind, we should just let everyone in, ignore the laws that have been in effect for however long, and deal with the repercussions of those who are criminals after the fact, is that right?

Plus, if you or I set up shop in Mexico out of the blue, I’m pretty sure we’d be thrown in jail. It’s a violation of the law, after all.

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I’m guessing you’ve never read that user’s comments to me over the years... not that you’d study the interactions, but my tone is consistent with what I’ve received.

It's probably well-deserved, too, because you're pretty much doing nothing but reciting Fox News esque talking points that have already been rebutted pretty well. You just don't take the pushback well and go to the route of acting like a child. You think that you're being clever when you say "oh wise one," but you're really doing nothing else but coming off like an asshole.

I have empathy.

No you don't, you have crocodile tears. I don't sound silly, whatsoever. You're trying to project some bullshit rule of law platitude here while in the larger scheme of things, considering this entire administration's tenure, it's been do as I say, not as I do.

I'm not naive to think that there aren't nefarious people trying to get over the border but you only talk about them and you label all of them as so.

Do a little research.

"

I did. I provided you with a story that was source. You provided me anecdotes and talking points and provided no research. It's also something else that people who don't have research on their side say.

Plus, if you or I set up shop in Mexico out of the blue, I’m pretty sure we’d be thrown in jail. It’s a violation of the law, after all.

Cool. That's an apples to oranges comparison that isn't relevant.

Everything else about you saying that I want open borders is pure projection on your part and it's complete bullshit.

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I don’t read Fox News by itself, contrary to your assumptions. I read everything, left and right, because the truth is almost always somewhere in the middle.

I said “oh wise one” to this person because they often reply with some stupid snarky response, which is fine, so I give it back.

So if you’re not naive as to think there are no nefarious characters mixed in with true asylum seekers, what do you propose? It seems you only look at the potential asylum seekers and want everyone to come in and deal with any bad people later on.... I disagree with that approach.

If I’m projecting and putting words in your mouth, what are your thoughts then? I could’ve missed it too, and if so I apologize.

Edit: I would actually like to find a way for true asylum seekers to not be turned back, as in that article Pete posted, because that’s horrible. I’d also like to keep nefarious characters from sneaking in under the guise of asylum when their main goal is to be assholes. If you have an idea on how to achieve those two things, I’m all for it.

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And probably why I have more of an emotional response is that I see immigrants painted with a broad brush in these situations. "Nefarious" people, as we've mentioned, soon turns into a lazy argument where everyone trying to immigrate here is nefarious.

what do you propose? It seems you only look at the potential asylum seekers and want everyone to come in and deal with any bad people later on.... I disagree with that approach.

What I propose is that we follow the actual procedures, which means that if you show up at the border, you're vetted, and if you're seeking asylum and claim to have family in the US, you will be removed from detaining facilities and placed with those family members and you can continue on the immigration path put forward. It's not the best policy we have, but it's certainly better than detaining everyone indefinitely. It's not hyperbolic at all. People have already died from conditions, children have been molested and sexually assaulted while under custody, and it's seemingly all in the name of two things: the cruelty of the administration (there's likely more than one person behind this than Trump and Miller, but Miller is obviously a big part of it), and the profit motives for the private facilities that are operating them.

It gets extremely tiresome to have this debate because we could have had at least some meaningful immigration reform roughly ten years ago. From what I understand, during Obama's early years, John Boehner reached out to Obama saying that he'd like to work on a bipartisan immigration reform measure/legislation. And, if I'm not mistaken, after 2010 and the onset of the Tea Party movement, Boehner did an about face and stopped talking about it. Next thing you know, Republicans take over and Mitch McConnell is at the helm of the Senate and makes his modus operandi shutting down any sort of success that the Obama administration could have. I hate to get into partisan politics at this point, but that's exactly what it is. We could have had the opportunity to take and make more meaningful reforms that maybe would have helped deal with the current situation at the southern border, but because of how much racism was intertwined if not at the foundation of the Tea Party movement, it became politically toxic for Republicans to even consider touching it on a bipartisan basis.

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Really. It's about time they have decent conditions.
IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/dXwxKy0.jpg)

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No, kids need to not be in a concentration camp. Wayfair was profiting off of the torture of children by selling $200,000 worth of furniture to a concentration camp.

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Ethics and capitalism are not incompatible. Wayfair could have declined the order without suffering any loss, including the loss of dignity on the part of their management.

Not profiting and taking a loss are not synonymous.

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"concentration camp" and "never again" when they are light-years from what is being discussed do not get to talk about ethics.

Apologize first.

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troll.

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But hey, if you say you're 14, that's good enough for the US government!

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Shocked I tell you!

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At least, based on exchanges I've had with that poster.

But it's not like the conditions are much different than what's posted from that 2014 photo based on recent reports. Don't let that hamper you from trying to own the libs, though, bud. Though we may never see what the conditions are like because the facilities won't allow people to take photos. I can't imagine being more upset with people trying to do journalism in the face of inhumane conditions than you are with people trying to "virtue signal."

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Your posts do crack me up. Keep fighting the good fight.

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It's sad all around. Guess that includes your sense of humor. Have a good one, buddy.

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But Wayfair doesn't need to profit from imprisoning kids.

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Is making a broad assumption this contract provided beds for kids and not adults.

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I didn't make that assumption, which is why I think those crying crocodile tears about the protesters depriving the poor children of beds are full of shit.

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Maybe the protesters can take their time machine back to 2014 to protest these conditions.

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The picture was taken during the Obama admin. You may whimper "what aboutism" but it merely points out your hypocrisy. You couldn't have cared less about those children under Obama, but now? Now you find morals and ethics and compassion? BS, you only care because Trump.

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The previous administration didn't hide the unaccompanied children that came to the border.

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has been taught a broader form of empathy. and for a majority of them, it works. this is not about petulantly being "woke." This is about people with more bandwidth to understand human rights.

This is a bold and patriotic move for these Wayfair employees to take.

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There's hope for the country when people come to realize they don't need to trade their morals for a paycheck.

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The 'younger generation' aren't morally or ethically superior to older generations. Same shit was said when I was a kid.

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dreams, old man.

It's a little known fact that we also invented NPR upspeak back when we were just four years and seven months old. Each one of us. Independently.

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I think we need to stop separating children from the adults who bring them across the border and I also think that anyone seeking asylum deserves a decent place to sleep, access to soap and water, decent food. I loathe Trump I read the New Yorker article and was upset to learn about the way the children are being treated. We need to fix the situation these children are in.

But I think these Wayfair workers are not going to change anything with this walk out. I mean these kids are sleeping on concrete floors. Do they think denying a bed will somehow change Trump's policy? I get it, they are really trying to say these detention centers are immoral (although they did exist before Trump). This is going to backfire and make them look out of touch and elitist. Looking at the photos most of them look to be age 30 or under. Mostly white. They are young enough and have enough privilege and confidence to assume that if they were to lose their job over this, they can easily find another. Revisit these people in 20 years and see if they are still willing to do this. I guess I've gotten very cynical in my old age.

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You're just uninformed about how change happens (and you're projecting, but that's a different topic). Learn about (for example) the Montgomery bus boycott. People said that wouldn't change anything too, and it didn't -- not in the immediate and total way that folks like you seem to expect. Real life vs. "aha, see? this entire tactic is invalid!" pouncing.

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Wayfair employees' alternate demand was that the company donate the profits to RAICES Texas, "a nonprofit agency that promotes justice by providing free and low-cost legal services to underserved immigrant children, families, and refugees." https://www.raicestexas.org/

That is a perfectly reasonable demand, that a company not profit against something so morally outrageous, w/o depriving anyone of services.

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Where the comments are littered with people who are inexplicably rooting directly against the working class.

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I see some pretty prime-grade bootlicking upthread, even if the regulars haven't chimed in yet. The thread about this yesterday also had some nice "everyone walking out is a liberal arts major who should get a REAL JOB" chucklefuckery in it, too.

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What's the bar for "real job" if a (expletive) furniture salesperson is being mocked?

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A BDR, an Account Executive and a Sales Manager are unsure about hitting their monthly goals...

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Oh man this is tough. On the one hand those kids need beds. In the other hand those kids need to not be in those camps. And we shouldn't profit off of this. But donating the beds just helps the companies running the camps.

Solidarity.

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The core problem is further upstream from the southwest border. The country's border-detention infrastructure is currently overwhelmed.

About 2.5x as many people are crossing now compared to the same time last year. Imagine if 2.5x as many tourists came to Boston this summer compared to last summer. What would happen? You'd see people pitching tents in Boston Common, and it would be a mess.

This isn't a simple problem to solve but any conceivable political solution will be a sort of Great Compromise consisting of a combination of amnesty for current DACA recipients, some length of border wall, rebranding of ICE, and stricter controls blocking future unauthorized entries and asylum seekers.

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https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/trump-doing-all-wrong-thing...

As long as demand for immigration persists, enforcement-only attempts to limit illegal immigration will be only partially effective. Most undocumented US residents enter legally but overstay their visas. And the Trump administration’s limitations on asylum applications at legal ports of entry have only increased illegal border crossings.

Rather than continue failed supply-side approaches, the US should aim to reduce the demand for illegal immigration. In this way, immigration reform can be a win-win.

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Please advocate Boston Public Library develop a major exhibition about immigration history!... in addition to "Who We Are: Boston Immigration Then and Now" https://collections.leventhalmap.org/exhibits/19

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