You have to have a Stacks account to read this in its archive, but I have the full text of the article so I am going to post it here. This was originally on the front page of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on October 17th.
Want to know what makes someone a redneck lefty trade protectionist? Everything you need to know is in the following article. I was born in this town. My grandmother worked in one of these mills for 30 years.
Read the whole thing.
Rivals unite against China’s textile juggernaut
Dan Chapman – Staff
Sunday, October 17, 2004
Eden, N.C. — One by one, the mills closed and the people moved to Greensboro or Charlotte or stayed put, scrounged for work and quit believing in better days.
Mothers requested food instead of toys for their kids at Christmas. Old men gathered beer cans left behind at fishing holes along the Dan and Smith rivers. Husbands hit wives with hammers.
After a decade of numbing job losses, Eden, a town of 16,000 tucked below the Virginia line, looks used. Windows remain broken or covered with plywood at the Central Hotel. “Autumn bows,” colored ribbons sold by the florist for $5, offer a bright interlude in an otherwise dreary downtown.
Eden is no paradise now. And the worst may yet come.
After Jan. 1, when federal limits on textile and apparel imports are scheduled to expire, China is poised to flood the U.S. market with cheap bluejeans, T-shirts and underwear.
More than 600,000 more jobs might disappear, too, textile industry executives warn. North Carolina, which lost 25 mills and 14,000 jobs last year, could suffer more than any other state. Three thousand of the textile jobs that could be lost are in the Eden area.