Occupy Wall Street comes back for May Day
After months of dormancy, Occupy Wall Street and its related groups rallied in the city Wednesday, including a march from Union Square to Foley Square.
Hundreds gathered for the afternoon May Day rally in Union Square, but the event’s message of equality for workers was garbled in the mix of traditional occupiers and local labor unions.
Most of the protesters in Union Square called for amnesty for undocumented immigrants, but the multiple chants from the stage became inaudible.
Some groups waved flags, others held up banners decrying “capitalism’s evils” and a few did a Mexican dance in colorful garb. Some protesters still donned the Guy Fawkes mask that has come to represent Occupy Wall Street.
Victor Castellano, a trustee with the Teamsters Local 553, said the traditional May Day message was “heavily diluted” at the rally.
“You have a whole bunch of people now with different agendas,” said the 58-year-old Whitestone resident. “We’re not looking for an end to Wall Street or beginning of socialism, we just want fair labor laws.”
After Union Square, the demonstrators marched to Foley Square in a mostly calm procession.
Some of the day’s protests, however, weren’t as pretty.
More than a hundred protesters gathered in the East Village earlier in the afternoon and butted heads with officers who were at the scene.
A small scuffle ensued and at least six people were arrested, a witness said.
At press time, the NYPD couldn’t give a number of how many protesters were taken in to custody.
Other events were scheduled for last night, including a memorial at Zuccotti Park for Kimani Gray, a 16-year-old boy who was killed by officers in Flatbush in March after cops say he threatened them with a weapon.
(with Ivan Pereira)