Lordstown, Ohio, was defined by its General Motors plant. Now workers say job cuts threaten the lives they’ve built. There’s a sign outside the General Motors assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio, that reads: “GM, We Invested in You. Now It’s Your Turn to Invest in US.”
Ever since the US’s largest car company’s immense assembly plant opened here 52 years ago, it has dominated this blue-collar town. Now GM workers here are furious that the automaker plans to idle – and perhaps permanently close – the plant.
GM stunned its workforce on 26 November, the Monday after Thanksgiving, by announcing it would cut roughly 14,000 jobs and idle five factories in North America, including the Lordstown plant, which employs 1,600 workers. One factor stoking the workers’ ire is that GM’s move came after American taxpayers rescued it from bankruptcy with a $49.5bn federal bailout in 2009.
While some have blamed Trump policies for the closure, or at least for his inability to stop them, it’s the company that workers hold most responsible. “Their announcement was really a kick in the stomach,” said Danny Adams, who has worked at the plant since 1996. “It’s not woe is me. It’s woe is us.”
Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction