Historically, trade-union rights were respected before the establishment of welfare states. The successful efforts of such leaders as Martin Luther King, Jr (1929-1968) opened the door for advances in the rights of women and, much later, gays and lesbians. The evidence suggests that minorities and trade unionists should pursue separate but simultaneous struggles for their rights, whereas women, gays, and lesbians will derive benefit by forming coalitions that work for the success of both struggles while continuing to stress their own agendas.