In a particularly obtuse episode of the seminal 90’s animated Batman series, Batman stumbles upon a subterranean city of runaway children, stigmatized mute and averse to sunlight and forced by a crazed Sewer King to steal pocket watches. No one thought of looking for workforce injustice in the sewers — least of all Mr. Wayne, who of course was occupied with more overt villains forged in improbable acid accidents — but it was there. And in the end, Batman made sure those mole children filed W-4s and were offered transportation stipends and equality was had.
I reference this now because it is not entirely unlike the recent and sudden Adult interest in the sub-employee status of their children, occurring for years in the shadows, but only now brought to the surface in a swell of apparent shock and indignation. Surely they must have noticed their progeny absent from their usual stations in the couch for time on end, yet still asking for gas money. Where did they suspect they were, I wonder, working these magical volunteer jobs of indeterminate hours?