Talk:right to work

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I think this definition isn't quite right. Is it really the legislation that's called right to work, or the right itself that the legislation is offering? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 03:21, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Definition I'm sure it's not complete or correct--I'm working on it now and trying to refine it. Please do give your feedback as I'm pretty inexperienced here. —Justin (koavf)TCM 03:24, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Well, it's pretty important, because if it breaks our Criteria for Inclusion it should be deleted. I'll take a look, and if I think that it is sum of parts ("SOP") I'll send it to WT:RFD and see what other people think. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 03:31, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
SOP It's not like "red house" which is a house that's red. It's a politically contentious term in the United States with two virtually antithetical meanings: in right-wing politics, it's "laws designed to stop closed shops" and in left-wing politics it's "a human right that all persons deserve the ability to have gainful employ." —Justin (koavf)TCM 03:40, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
That's true of everything that has multiple points of view by means of which people could think about it. But feel free to make your argument at WT:RFD#right to work. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:04, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
RfD I already did, which is what I just posted on your talk using Template:Talkback... —Justin (koavf)TCM 04:09, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Sorry, I'm theoretically doing work, so I didn't notice that until after I'd posted :) I've responded there. By the way, we don't use talkback much here, because we all watchlist others' talkpages and major fora. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:17, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Fair enough If you don't like Talkback notifications, that's fine--by all means revert. I'd just rather post and you see that as well than post to RfD and you never see that. Either way, do you agree that the citations (if malformed) demonstrate that the phrase is a meaningful idiom? —Justin (koavf)TCM 04:20, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Don't worry, I'll see it. I waste so much time here, it's basically a given :) Er, I'm not really sure. Personally, I think that for the most part, uses are the best for proving how something is used in real life. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:46, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Uses Did you see the Slate Explainer? Barring that... It's used a lot in American discourse about labor law. —Justin (koavf)TCM 05:40, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Citations[edit]

These citations are not actually usable, per WT:CFI. Please see the use-mention distinction — only uses count as citations. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:15, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Those citations are not usable for the purposes of establishing citations for CFI. If it gets sent to RFV, that distinction will be important.--Prosfilaes (talk) 22:37, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

RFD discussion[edit]

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The following information passed a request for deletion.

This discussion is no longer live and is left here as an archive. Please do not modify this conversation, though feel free to discuss its conclusions.


I don't think that the definition is accurate. To me, it just looks like the right to work - not a law's name, and not idiomatic. See also Talk:right to work. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 03:33, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Keep (creator) As I pointed out here, it's not a simple construction of right, to, and work—it has specific and loaded meaning in terms of American politics and the two meanings are virtually antonyms. I'll grant that I may not have made a complete definition, but the nice thing about wikis is that others can edit them and (ostensibly) improve their entries. Note that I have also created Citations:right to work. —Justin (koavf)TCM 03:43, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Addendum For what it's worth, I find it more than mildly discouraging that this went to RfD immediately, rather than some kind of discussion on talk or allowing me to provide any references and citations to show that the phrase is idiomatic. I have not been very active on Wiktionary compared to Wikipedia: is it commonplace here to leap to deletion so quickly? —Justin (koavf)TCM 03:52, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Keep. I'm not sure the definition is quite right — IME it's nearly always used attributively ("right-to-work state", "right-to-work law/bill/legislation", "right-to-work effort", etc.), which makes it hard to tell what exactly it would refer to when used on its own (I was actually unsure for the longest time if it was to be read as "[people have a] rightNOUN to workVERB/NOUN" vs. as "[let's get] rightADV to workNOUN") — but whatever the right definition is, it certainly seems idiomatic to me. I don't see how anyone could possibly infer from its parts that it has anything to do with unions. (Am I missing something?) —RuakhTALK 04:03, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
@Justin: We did discuss it first. We disagree, so I'm putting it to the community to make a decision. After all, entries are always subject to consensus no matter what. I'll look at your citations and respond at Talk:right to work. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:09, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
@Meta You gave me a few seconds--I was in the middle of making the citations page at that time. Do you think this is different in principle than right to life or free speech? I just don't understand your argument: if you're not familiar with the phrase, that's completely fine, but why is your first response to delete rather than ask for or look at some citations to show that this is actually idiomatic and meaningful as a phrase? —Justin (koavf)TCM 04:12, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Well, yes and no. right to life is a marketing phrase created for the politico-religious purpose of anti-abortion (or anti-choice, another specific marketing phrase.) free speech, contrariwise, has no clear consensus as to its meaning/implication (imo, of course.) Also in my opinion this phrase, if included, should have a more neutral phrasing; the definition at present appears extremely partisan. - Amgine/ t·e 04:50, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
@Justin: I am familiar with the phrase, I can't help that. As it is, I personally view this RFD as successful. Everyone has voted keep, so you're happy that it will be kept, and a lot more attention of experienced editors was spent on the entry, so I'm happy that the definitions have improved. At least the liberal sense still looks pretty SOP to me, but evidently some people disagree with that. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 00:59, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Keep this and other fundamental human rights (a small group but in the short form). Some start with "right to ..." and some with "freedom of ...", e.g. freedom of speech. BTW< I have removed the US context. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:21, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Keep. This term is idiomatic because, in conservative usage, it precisely does not designate a right to work. In liberal usage, it has a sense of more questionable idiomaticity, but which I'd tend to favour keeping. - -sche (discuss) 06:26, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
  • For what it's worth, it's in the American Oxford dictionary as an adjective: right-to-work. adjective. relating to or promoting a worker's right not to be required to join a labor union: Kansas is a right-to-work state. ---> Tooironic (talk) 10:02, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Keep It was clearly coined before 1950 as a way of selling US legislation to weaken unionism. (Compare right to life.) It has been successful inasmuch as it now means "legislation prohibiting union shops or closed shops" or "legislation mandating open shops". Note that closed shop is also an idiomatic coinage that is intended to be pejorative. Union shop and open shop fit into a terminological system of coordinate terms with closed shop and, as such, merit inclusion IMHO. All three of the "shop" terms were part of middle-school social studies courses in my youth (in pro-labor NY) and probably remain in such courses. DCDuring TALK 13:16, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
@Anatoli: When I read this line "Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment." from article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights I have a hard time reading right to work there as idiomatic, any more than the immediately following "rights". Are you sure that this is an idiomatic expression outside of some realm of constitution-speak or NGO-speak? DCDuring TALK 15:46, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
To me, it's seems a legal term. The number of words in definitions and details may differ, depending on a dictionary. We don't need encyclopedic definitions. Merriam-Webster dictionary also has right-to-work ("opposing or banning the closed shop and the union shop"). --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 01:58, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Note, however, that the line between dictionary definitions and encyclopedic definitions is not necessarily sharply drawn. bd2412 T 22:46, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Keep, at least the anti-union sense, which is clearly not SoP.--Prosfilaes (talk) 20:34, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Symbol keep vote.svg Keep. Very counterintuitive meaning, which confused users would want to look up. ~ Röbin Liönheart (talk) 20:44, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Keep per Robin Lionheart, despite his gratuitous use of umlauts. bd2412 T 02:42, 14 December 2012 (UTC)

Kept. DAVilla 10:27, 18 December 2012 (UTC)