May Day is bigger to me than my birthday. Every May 1st, as you’ve now come to expect from years past, I march downtown with fellow Angelenos who are voicing a particular cause: communism, gay rights, no new jails, education for all, anarchy, Korean-American unions, the proletariat, you name it… Traditionally, May Day has been reserved as a call-to-action for labor rights and immigration reform. Especially here in Los Angeles, with 46% of the workforce being composed of undocumented workers, thousands from the Latin-American and immigrant communities pound the pavement to City Hall, decrying deportation and unfair practices that split up families and violate human rights.
This year, May Day also unofficially merged with Occupy’s “4 Winds” movement, as protestors convened from four points around Los Angeles right at 6th and Main St. Occupy’s public and noisy re-emergence indoctrinated a Spring revival and peacefully drew attention back to their demands for an end to corporate greed and better opportunities to participate in the American workforce.
Elsewhere in the States, including Oakland, Portland, and Seattle, May Day turned ugly, whether from the cops’ end, the protestors, or both. But here in L.A., the march was virtually without incident. Although I don’t sympathize with every single person’s concerns involved in May Day, I do empathize with their plight as individuals seeking a better future and change for themselves and their community. We can sit here for days and debate the validity of their movement or we can acknowledge that all people have struggles and the United States of America is a beautiful country for allowing us to express that out loud, boisterously, and fervently.
It’s a running thread throughout The Hundreds lifestyle. Fight back. Speak up. Be heard. Whether you’re for it or against it, stand your ground, stand tall, and stand up for what you believe in.