Episode

2/14 Being A Trauma Doctor In Gaza & Unionizing Amazon In Kentucky

February 14, 2024

It’s Hump Day! Sam speaks with Griffin Ritze, a union organizer at Amazon’s largest air hub in Kentucky, Amazon KCVG, and Marcio Rodriguez, a Planeside Ramp worker and member of the Amazon Labor Union-KCVG organizing committee, to discuss their efforts to ratify their constitution and file with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for a union election. Then, Sam speaks with Dr. Thaer Ahmad, emergency room physician and assistant program director of the Advocate Christ Emergency Medicine Residency Program, to discuss his recent experience volunteering at the Al Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip. First, Sam runs through updates on the GOP finally succeeding in the impeachment of Sec. Mayorkas, Pennsylvania Democrats’ victory, minimum wage legislation, Israel’s siege of Rafah, the US State Department’s weapons “review,” and Pakistani elections, before diving into Tom Suozzi’s victory in the NY-3 special election to replace George Santos. Griffin Ritze then joins, diving right into the major factors behind the beginning of the unionization effort at KCVG, with Amazon cutting benefits amid rising inflation and internal dissent, alongside the labor victory at Amazon JFK-8. After touching on his firing just weeks ago in the lead-up to an election filing, Ritze wraps up by expanding on the major problems with the working conditions at the KCVG Amazon air freight location, and what we can do to support their fight. Dr. Thaer Ahmad then walks through his assessment of the already shaky state of the healthcare system in pre-October 7th Gaza, as well as his relationship to the healthcare system, as a first-generation Palestinian-American doctor, before tackling the extensive effort it took to get into Gaza as a healthcare worker. Next, Dr. Ahmad explores the extreme changes in quality of life in Southern Gaza from his previous experiences providing healthcare, parsing through the impact of mass displacement into Rafah alongside the dwindling number of functioning hospitals in the region creating a system of severely overworked, underfunded, and under-resourced healthcare workers. After looking at the impact of the mass starvation and water scarcity on health, Thaer explores the constant siege on hospitals, even in the south of Gaza, and the clear goal of extending the ethnic cleansing until Gaza is gone, also expanding on the massive impact of the violent occupation on children in Gaza. Wrapping up, Dr. Ahmad dives into the insanity of Israel’s backers revoking aid for UNRWA, the devastating impact of the blockage of aid to Gaza, and the US’ insistence on not going around it, before wrapping up with what we can do to help get humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza.

And in the Fun Half: Sam watches Channel 4 once again confront an Israeli spox. over the lack of evidence around their UNRWA claims, MSNBC tiptoes around addressing the Nakba, and Michael Cohen makes some claims about Trump’s nepotism. Kevin from Detroit highlights the ‘Listen to Michigan’ Campaign to pressure Biden and Democrats over their support for Israeli apartheid, Mo from Texas parses through issues of empathy and healthcare in the US, and Juliet from Portland tackles trans marginalization in queer community. Steve Bannon talks about American apartheid, the MR Crew explores the disappearance of competitive US House districts, and Dana Bash discusses some factors in Tom Suozzi’s victory.

Find out more about the Amazon Labor Union-KCVG’s efforts here: https://unionizeamazonkcvg.org/

Follow Dr. Ahmad on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/tahmadmd/?hl=en

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https://www.anera.org/

https://www.pcrf.net/

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