Labor unions using an inflated rodent, “Scabby the Rat,” in protests were vindicated by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB)who ruled that the rat was protected speech. Even Republican appointees to the board sided with Scabby. The Trump administration had tried to argue that the rat was a threat, “glaring in character and size and an unmistakable symbol of contempt” with their “red eyes, fangs, and claws.” (Business Insider, July 21, 2021, by Charles Davis)
A past general counsel for the NLRB had argued that the union’s use of Scabby against a supplier for a company accused of unfair labor practices was illegal picketing and undeserving of First Amendment protection. In ruling for Scabby, the NLRB made reference to court decisions that allowed such protest activities as cross-burning and flag-burning. So long as Scabby doesn’t block entrances and exits, he can reign free. (CBS, July 22, 2021, by Irina Ivanova)
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