Politicians in Iowa are actually trying to loosen child labor laws – we might be headed back to the days of children working in the mines. Mike Papantonio & Farron Cousins discuss more.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Mike Papantonio: Politicians in Iowa are actually trying to loosen child labor laws. We might head, be headed back to the days of children working in mines. Okay. You know what this is about, right? This is about, we have this influx of immigrant workers coming into this country. It’s the Koch brothers, it’s US Chamber of Commerce, it’s associated industries. It’s, well, the, you know, it’s all of these groups that want these workers coming into the United States to work for no money. Cheap labor. And you know what? If you kill ’em on the job, it’s okay. Ship ’em back to Nicaragua, Guatemala. If they lose an arm, ship ’em back to Mexico. Here we’re talking about kids. We want kids working in jobs like mines. Right?

Farron Cousins: Yeah. And this is, this is just beyond disturbing. In fact, the ACLU said it, it is just crazy. They said, this is crazy. But you’re absolutely right. And I love the fact that you and I didn’t talk about this story before we came on, and we both land at the same spot. This is, it all has to do with immigration and sure we’ve got the big crackdown because you gotta send them back. You can’t keep ’em here. So the corporations are looking at this, well, if we can’t have cheap labor from south of the border, we’ve got cheap labor, labor sitting over here in the high schools. You know, these kids don’t know any better. We can put them back to work like those old pictures of the kids walking out of the mines. That is what they want. Because yeah, kids would be allowed to go back and be miners again under this new law. They’d work in animal slaughterhouses.

Mike Papantonio: Right.

Farron Cousins: Under this law. Jobs that back in the, I mean, a hundred years ago, we finally said, this is dangerous for kids.

Mike Papantonio: It’s worse than that. It’s worse than that. Okay. They lay out, we’re gonna allow kids to work in freezers, in meat coolers, in slaughterhouses. We’re gonna allow ’em to work in the logging industry. Some limited in the mining industry. But it’s crazier than that. We’re gonna let ’em work in demolition. We’re gonna let ’em work around circular saws, punching machines, all kinds of dangerous machinery. Why? The heart of it is this. You got the media, their only story is, oh my gosh, we, you know, we gotta let these immigrants in. You gotta let ’em in. Biden says, you gotta let ’em in. It’s the humane thing to do. It has nothing to do with humanity. It has everything to do with the US Chamber of Commerce and associated industries saying, we got a new workforce. And you know what? They’ll work for $3 an hour. And you know what? If they get hurt, it ain’t a big deal. That’s what this is about. You tell me, when’s the last time you saw corporate media do a story on that?

Farron Cousins: Oh, never.

Mike Papantonio: No, they don’t do stories. It’s, it’s either they’re too stupid, they’re too stupid to understand how this connects up, or they don’t want to offend their advertisers. It’s the same story, isn’t it?

Farron Cousins: Well, their advertisers are the ones who want to hire these children. I mean.

Mike Papantonio: Of course.

Farron Cousins: You’re gonna have kids sitting in high school next to somebody who suddenly doesn’t have an arm on Tuesday.

Mike Papantonio: Yeah.

Farron Cousins: Because they’re after school job in the logging industry, they got it hacked off. But I mean, that, but that’s what they want. Because with these kids, you can also pay them below minimum wage because they’re not full-time workers. There’s all kinds of loopholes that allow you to screw over this workforce. And so if they say, okay, if we can’t get it from Mexico, we’re gonna go get it from the high school.

Mike Papantonio: What are we hearing from corporate America? American workers are lazy. They don’t wanna work anymore. They wanna sit home and just collect checks and drink and smoke dope. That’s the message.

Farron Cousins: Yeah. That’s what they’re saying.

Mike Papantonio: Coming from the US Chamber of Commerce and associated industry and all of the people that wanna bring these kids in to do these jobs for, they wanna bring the whole family.

Farron Cousins: Yeah.

Mike Papantonio: You know, they want the family to work picking oranges and strawberries for nothing. And then, oh, by the way, let’s let the kids work too. This is a sick, sick story, but it’s happening. And it’s not just happening in one state.

Farron Cousins: Right. There’s, there’s this nationwide push. We’re starting to see more and more of this across the country.

Mike Papantonio: Oh yeah.

Mike Papantonio is an American attorney and television and radio talk show host. He is past president of The National Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious trial lawyer association in America; and is one of the few living attorneys inducted into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame. He hosts the international television show "America's Lawyer"; and co-hosts Ring of Fire Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio program, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Sam Seder.