Ken has been integral in the creation of the first South Hampton Roads Chapter of the Virginia Organizing Project. Ken has supported local efforts by writing letters to the editor and helping to start HRCAN, Hampton Roads Coalition Advocacy Network.
As a retired high school history teacher, Ken’s understanding of the law and politics has been invaluable in fighting for the residents in the Providence Mobile Home Park whose homes have been threatened by a bulldozer. Ken has stood shoulder to shoulder with the Providence residents and is also working on influencing local public policy to address the lack of affordable housing in South Hampton Roads.
Ken has a keen sense of how many social justice issues overlap but there is no issue more important to him than jobs. “Sometimes I fear we cannot see the forest through the trees. The forest is that people in this country need good paying jobs. With good jobs you alleviate so many of the other problems in society,” noted Ehrenthal. He will continue the conversation on the need for a strong working class in his new seminar on labor history. “We need to re-evaluate what the word ‘work’ means. We have created a society where we reward gambling and manipulation of other people’s money while we denigrate honest labor. It has created a class-based society whereby people who actually work and produce things are looked down upon. It is sad that someone can work forty hours a week and not be able to afford a basic one-bedroom apartment.”