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Short Essay: The Dignity of Labor

The dignity of labor is a very relevant and thought-provoking issue. People work to earn money and support their living. Moreover, the results of their work contribute to the development and improvement of human civilization. Many people forget that labor itself is already dignity. When one works hard to support his family, he should be respected.

There is a common idea that people work only because they need money. They do not think about the usefulness of their work for their self-improvement and for humanity in the whole. People have made an artificial division of labor defining superior and inferior professions. Superior professions provide employees with higher salaries, shorter working hours and better conditions of work. Inferior profession is characterized with manual labor. When one works with hands, he is supposed to earn little and his results of work are often disrespected. It is possible to say that carpenters, masons, sweepers and servants are neglected.

Their labor is disrespected and their status is low. Businessmen, programmers, teachers, etc. belong to superior professions and they are more respected than others. Naturally, it is impossible to evaluate results of work objectively. One must not say that a sweeper does unnecessary work. Our streets would be full of garbage without their hard labor. You will not be able to purchase stylish new chairs or bookshelves if there were no carpenters who would make them for you. You will not be able to warm yourself in winter without coal miners and electricians. You will not have hot and cold water at home without plumbers. Therefore, one must not look down upon the people who do manual work. It is impossible to question dignity of their labor, because their work is useful for everyone.

It is much worse to avoid working hard. There are millions of people who receive allowances, because they do not want to find a job. They prefer idling to “inferior” occupation. They do not want to realize that their laziness is contemptible. When one works to support his family, he is honest and assured that he does a noble deed. When you need money and when you are hungry, you do not think about dignity, but you work hard. When one thinks about labor from this point of view, he will never criticize or question “inferior” professions, because very often an “inferior” occupation is more important and useful than a “superior” one.

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