Remo Borrachini has worked at the bakery on Rainier Ave. S. for 77 years. (MyNorthwest.com Photo)
There's something special about a bakery.
Is there anything better than the smell of freshly baked bread and pastries wafting over a neighborhood?
For 90 years, Borrachini's Bakery has been a gem in Seattle's Rainier Valley. Remo Borrachini has been working at his family's bakery for 77 of those 90 years. He started when he was 5 years old - and today, at age 82, he still loves going to work every day. He tells me he loves being a baker because of the people - the employees and customers are all family to Remo.
A few weeks ago, Remo had to fire one of his employees because of several complaints that she was rude to customers. That fired employee then ran to a group called Seattle Solidarity that organized a mob to disrupt Remo's business. They sent 52 people to his bakery one Saturday and basically shut down Borrachini's while they were there.
SeaSol delivered a letter to Remo that said they would continue to send their mob to his business unless Remo gave the fired employee about $8,000 - they said the figure was based on breaks she should have gotten the last nine years. That sounds like extortion to me. At least one lawyer that I've talked with agrees.
So I did a little digging into Seattle Solidarity. Who is behind this group? As they say on their website:
Q: Where do we get our funding?
A: Nowhere. We are not funded. We are loosely affiliated with the Seattle branch of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), a radical labor union, and sometimes the Seattle IWW gives the Solidarity Network money
And what is their mission of the Seattle chapter of Industrial Workers of the World? From their website:
It is the historic mission of the working class to do away with capitalism.
With that as background, I've decided it's time to fight back against this Communist organization that is trying to disrupt a family run business that has been providing jobs and treats and memories in the Rainier Valley for 90 years.
And I want to fight back in as positive and as fun a way as possible.
And so on Friday, I'm asking all KIRO-FM listeners to swing by Borrachini's to show that we're tired of the inmates running the asylum in Seattle. Pick up some treats for your co-workers. Get something special for your family's Easter gathering.
If you can't be there Friday - be there on Saturday. The protestors say they're going to be back there Saturday disrupting Borrachini's business again. Let's overwhelm them with good ol' American capitalism - that will drive them crazy.
Borrachini's opens at 5:30am. I'll be down there from 9-11am Friday to show my support. In my blog post right below this one, you can hear my interviews with Remo Borrachini and with a rep for Solidarity Seattle. that will give you a pretty good idea of what we're dealing with on both sides of this story.
It's time to protest the protestors. Are you with me?
On Friday, Seattle Solidarity shared the letters of unconfirmed former employees with complaints that supported the claims of the fired employee.
Watch Brandi Kruse's report.