These are migrant farm workers, traveling from one job site to the next with their parents, going where the work is. Norma reported seeing kids as young as seven out in the fields, learning the virtues of soul-grinding menial labor instead of wasting their time playing with their friends or going to school. If you're wondering how these farmers avoid getting busted by the feds, it's because there's nothing to be busted for: according to the U.S. Department of Labor, it's totally okay for children as young as six to toil away in the harsh, unforgiving elements, helping harvest your food with their tiny little hands. Some states have set more strict rules, but still, some 500,000 kids work in American fields every year.
You're welcome to scoff and say that it's good for these kids to get some exercise and learn the value of hard work, but keep in mind there's a reason no other industry allows this. Federal labor laws generally set the minimum work age at 16, and there are a whole bunch of restrictions on how many hours those kids can work and, say, how much poison they can legally inhale in a day. However, farm work is exempt from all these pesky regulations, because it's traditional, and lawmakers are still imagining a wholesome Normal Rockwell scene in which a farmer and his son get up at dawn to milk the cows together.
Case in point: this is what Getty kicked back for "child farm labor."
Instead, dirt-cheap child labor has become a part of the business model. And no, they're not just helping out here and there so they can get their hands dirty:
"When I was out there, it was typical to do 8 to 10 to 12-hour days. At the peak of the season, we worked seven days a week, maybe three weeks straight, with no days off. Then maybe six days a week, eight hours a day. I'd also spend my spring break working in the fields. I don't know if you've ever been to the Rio Grande valley, it's very hot. Very humid. I'd be out there picking onions."
Note how the huge knife is totally something that should be in the hands of a third grader.