“General strike” to hit the US on May first
In more than 100 cities from Washington State to the District of Columbia, protesters are orchestrating a massive country-wide demonstration on Tuesday, May 1, and their plans call for what could be the biggest event of its like in recent memory.
In locales like New York City, San Francisco, California and at least 100 cities in between, thousands of demonstrators are expected to take to the streets on Tuesday for a national day of protest. Originating out of the Occupy Wall Street movement, what began as just a gathering of a few like-minded individuals in Lower Manhattan last year has spawned protests from coast to coast and in cities and countries across the world. Now nearly seven months after OWS first took hold in New York’s Zuccotti Park, occupiers across the nation and even abroad will be assembling on May 1 for a massive general strike being advertised as “a day without the 99 percent.”
Although the Occupy movement is one that lacks any formal leadership, OccupyWallStreet.org has acted as a major source of OWS-related bulletins since the protests took hold in September. On the site this week, the webmasters call for protesters to avoid attending both work and school and call for demonstrators to avoid making purchases as well.
“While American corporate media has focused on yet another stale election between Wall Street-financed candidates, Occupy has been organizing something extraordinary: the first truly nationwide General Strike in US history,” reads a message posted on the front-page of the website. “Building on the international celebration of May Day, past General Strikes in US cities like Seattle and Oakland, the recent May 1st Day Without An Immigrant demonstrations, the national general strikes in Spain this year, and the on-going student strike in Quebec, the Occupy Movement has called for A Day Without the 99% on May 1st, 2012. This in and of itself is a tremendous victory. For the first time, workers, students, immigrants, and the unemployed from over 125 US cities will stand together for economic justice.”
In New York City, demonstrators are scheduled to begin as early as 8 a.m. and other events are planned throughout the course of the day across America. In Manhattan protesters are planning to picket outside establishments managed by the elite 1 percent, including Chase Bank, the New York Times and the office of investment banker Stephen Berger. Elsewhere in the Big Apple will be workshops led by guitarist Tom Morello, teach-ins and, in Brooklyn organizers will be hosting a “Building Community Alternatives to Capitalism Day.”
Other events are slated across to occur across the US, and though they will all involve rallying for greater equality for all, some have been more specific about what they want to accomplish.
“We’re marching for the struggle for human dignity and respect,” Maribel Peralez explains to the lake Stevens Journal in the state of Washington. In regards to Tuesday’s planned strike in Seattle, Peralez adds, “We’re not anticipating any form of violence at all during the march; it is completely peaceful. We’re trying to address workers’ rights and human rights.”
If history is any precedent, however, things might get rowdy as the day turns to night.
As part of Occupy Wall Street’s call for a nationwide “general strike” May 1, elements within the group are looking to shut down bridges and tunnels in both New York and San Francisco.
Occupy Oakland, the most radical of all the local Occupy groups, passed a resolution April 15 that vows to shut down all travel from Marin to San Francisco.
“If any of the unions on the Golden Gate bridge declare a strike or shutdown action on May Day, we will act in solidarity with these striking workers and the international call for a general strike on May Day, by blockading the flow of capital to the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District. This will be accomplished by a collaboration of pickets and direct action which will shut down all modes of transportation from Marin to San Francisco,” went the statement on the website Occupythebridge.com.
The May Day Flier from the Golden Gate Labor Coalition calls for a protest next to the bridge that insists the Bridge District also: “don’t reduce vested retiree benefits,” “don’t reduce current employees’ benefits” and “don’t reward non-union employees with raises while breaking promises to union workers.”
The East Coast response to this shutdown call comes from the website Strikeisaverb.net and claims: “autonomous direct action groups within Occupy Wall Street, as a part of the global mobilizations for general strike and economic non-compliance, will block one or more Manhattan-bound bridge or tunnel to protest the shameful opulence of the 1%.”
any reports to post guys?
might get ugly once the night comes..