They arrived in beat-up, run down vehicles; after traveling thousands of miles into California, often losing children and older family members along the way (pg 22), they arrived with dreams of a brighter future, one with the hope of land for their own and jobs to support their loved ones. The scene they came up...
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...however, feels that to solve the plight of the Okies, land should be set aside for them to start their own small farms, since farming is all they know. He also suggests that local committees set wages and labor needs before the harvests to protect the rights of the workers and prevent them from being extorted (Pgs 58-59). While Steinbeck’s ideas made sense and had good intent, the grim reality still remained that the corporations controlled the agriculture industry and that they were going to save every nickel and dime they could, even if it meant a lower standard of living for the Okie. Today, we have unions that attempt to prevent things like this from happening again, but the plight of illegal immigrants demonstrates that the reality of this country’s need for cheap labor remains.
Steinbeck, John. The Harvest Gypsies, Heyday (July 1, 2002)
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