Marines Not Welcome at UAW Lot

The Detroit News reported in its Sunday edition that Marine reservists driving foreign cars or any vehicle with bumper stickers supporting President Bush are no longer welcome at the UAW’s lot. The commander of the local Marine base has responded in kind.

Marines driven out of UAW lot

The United Auto Workers says Marine reservists should show a little more semper fi if they want to use the union’s parking lot. The Marine Corps motto means “always faithful,” but the union says some reservists working out of a base on Jefferson Avenue in Detroit have been decidedly unfaithful to their fellow Americans by driving import cars and trucks. So the UAW International will no longer allow members of the 1st Battalion 24th Marines to park at Solidarity House if they are driving foreign cars or displaying pro-President Bush bumper stickers. “While reservists certainly have the right to drive nonunion made vehicles and display bumper stickers touting the most anti-worker, anti-union president since the 1920s, that doesn’t mean they have the right to park in a lot owned by the members of the UAW,” the union said in a statement released Friday.

Shocked and disappointed, the Marines are pulling out. “You either support the Marines or you don’t,” said Lt. Col. Joe Rutledge, commanding officer of the battalion’s active duty instructors. “I’m telling my Marines that they’re no longer parking there.” At a time when U.S. armed forces are fighting and dying in Iraq and Afghanistan, quibbling over parking privileges is “silly,” Rutledge said.

No joke. While this is a private lot and UAW has every right to do this, it is one idiotic move from a PR standpoint. Of course, the big labor unions have made one boneheaded move after another, so that shouldn’t be surprising.

Update: Don Sensing was on this story Friday, drawing from an American Digest report which, in turn, was based on a March 9 WXYZ story. That’s like a month ago in blog time.

Update (1407): Matt at Blackfive reports that the UAW has reversed course.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. bryan says:

    So if they drove a BMW X5 or Z4 (, they’d be welcome?

  2. liberty says:

    Blackfive just reported that the UAW has backed down. Evidently the President of the UAW is a former Marine and he rescinded the policy.

  3. Chris Short says:

    Yea, Blackfive is all over this one, James.

  4. Wendall says:

    Some Izuzus are made in Indiana … many American brands are made in Canada. What does the UAW say about that?

  5. Vanderleun says:

    Thanks for the link on this important, because symbolic of deeper attitudes, story.

  6. Dougrc says:

    Just from reading the original reports, I would way the car brand issue was just an aside. The real issue was the “W in ’04” stickers that were the straw that broke the camel’s back, as it were. Political tolerance never has been a UAW strong point. I’m glad someone in the union isn’t completely an ungrateful idiot. No matter who you are, you should always respect the soldier who is willing to spill his blood to preserve yours; politics be damned.

  7. Randy says:

    To the UAW leadership…. SHAME SHAME SHAME SHAME SHAME!! These marines fight and DIE for your right to disagree with them on their politics and you won’t let them park in your stupid garage. Just keep on making bonehead decisions like this and your orginization will soon cease to exist. What an out of touch bunch of losers. By the way, do you ban DAIMLERChryslers from your lot now? Semper Fi!

  8. James Stead says:

    uaw you don’t like Marines? uaw you are lower than a steamy pile of shit. When I see your label it will mean not to buy.

  9. Carlos says:

    Bonehead moves? The UAW? That can’t be! Why, they’ve supported every Democrat in every election for the last 100 years.

    Of course, that may be why the workers (who pay for the bigwigs to make those tremendous bucks and bonehead moves) are still in fact enslaved by big brother policies.

  10. The UAW is lost in a world of liberal hate and can do no good for workers. Unions have always been corrupt and useless.