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News :: Labor
Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
Modified: 03:41:04 AM
On Sunday, May 1 - also known as May Day, or International Workers' Day - anti-capitalist protesters gathered in downtown Boston for the first May Day march here in several years.
On Sunday, May 1 - also known as May Day, or International Workers' Day - anti-capitalist protesters gathered in downtown Boston for the first May Day march here in several years.

About one hundred militants turned out for the unpermitted demonstration, which was called by BAAM and which actually drew a more diverse crowd than other such actions in recent memory. Protesters marched behind large banners reading "No Bosses, No Borders," "Trabajadores del Mundo Unidos," "End Sexism" & "Disarm the State."

Anti-capitalists took over street after street downtown. From the Common, they marched past Downtown Crossing, past the corporate-sponsored Walk for Hunger, past the Newbury Street shops. Leaflets were handed out and read aloud to bystanders, explaining the reasons for marching. The message was surprisingly well received.

Some chants included "we are unstoppable, another world is possible," "the enemy is profit," "1, 2, 3, 4, this here is a class war," "when workers' rights are under attack...stand up fight back" and others in Spanish. At one point, the marchers even sang the old union song "Solidarity Forever."

The protesters were accompanied by a heavy police presence, with units of mounted police galloping along behind the crowd. But overall, the authorities seemed caught off guard, not to mention challenged by a roving squadron of legal observers from the NLG. So the police stood down for the day, and not a single arrest was seen.

When the march reached Mass. Ave., it broke into smaller groups, which allowed people to head to the immigrants rally at Copley without drawing all the police. It did seem like the anti-capitalists made up a very large proportion of the crowd at the rally.

A benefit show and a "Reclaim the Streets" were also planned for the evening near Harvard Square. This writer was not there. However, sources report that the nighttime action was small but lively. In spite of police harassment, several militants apparently barricaded Mass Ave. for a time, played games in the streets, and defaced some of the capitalist institutions in the area.

After all, May Day turned into a modest but successful day of action in Boston, building solidarity between communities affected by capitalism and carving out a public place for anti-capitalism on this greatest of anti-capitalist holidays. It is expected to happen again next year.

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Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
i would put the number of demonstrators closer to 30.
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
Why does every self proclaimed militant group start chants with "1-2-3-4?" Country Joe and the Fish were entertaining, but come on now! Be creative. Another one you should stay away from is "hey hey, ho ho." Leave that to Fat Albert and Santa Claus.
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
I'm tired of chants they are old, lame and totally weak ass...I’m embarrassed to be out in the streets sometimes. Maybe we should all take a page from the civil rights movement and get singing lessons or something...marching bands are good too…that or dead science could be effective.

Also this is the last rally, event or march I go to called around and base on a negation. Forget the "Anti-this” “Anti-that”” that lets start talking about what we are actually for and exactly what we want in our society.

I fear our movements will completely die if we don’t throw out these old and tired ways of protesting. Negations certainly don’t help any movement grow in any sustainable way (as we have seen with the Anti-war movement).
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
Beautiful picture in the Boston Metro today...

Title: "MAY DAY ON NEWBURY"

Caption: "UMass-Boston Student Brendan Currun waves a [red and black] flag as he marches with 50 other people down Newbury Street yesterday in celebration of International Workers' Day."

I would agree that the number was closer to 100 at the height of it. Pretty impressive for a march with such a radical message.
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
Why is this article being sidelined by Boston Indymedia?

It's the day after May Day, and they put an anti-vivisection rally from many days ago in the features, but not the May Day action? Lame.
you were there huh?
02 May 2005
there were at least 100 people in the midday march.

also, no one mentioned that playa hata and sucka mc extraordinaire, flipside himself made a rare live appearance to hand out his zine "la revolucion esta muerta" and stand around looking shy! where's the love, folks?!
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
i was also there and wouldn't say that the number reached 100, but i suck at estimating that sort of thing. i think the early time and the rain probably kept a number of people away, plus i know a handful who were at the walk for hunger. let's make it even bigger and better next year! (in other words, lets start planning sooner). i think the best part about what we did was passing out flyers, because most people we passed were very confused- one woman read the anti-sexism banner and said, 'oh they're just protesting for women's rights" and another english bystander was shocked to learn that his american friend had never heard of may day.
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
that flipside guy has got the best haircut/bad bleach job/mustache combo i've ever seen. yeah, pretty much ever. haha. the only possible excuse for rockin' that look out in public has got to be a lost bet. hahaha... oh man... that shit was awesome. no wonder he's such a angry 'hater'. if i lost a bet and was forced to walk round in public looking that ridiculous i'd be hatin' too. ha...
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
02 May 2005
"Negations certainly don’t help any movement grow in any sustainable way (as we have seen with the Anti-war movement). "

For someone who doesn't like negations, this is one negative comment! A couple things, jonathan: first, you could suggest some positive messages you think we could highlight--autonomy? solidarity? free healthcare for all? free information (as opposed to anti-copyright...) It's fine to complain, cuz nothing is ever perfect, but complaining about negation by being negative is a little silly. The other thing is you shouldn't be using gmail-- it scans the text of your messages in order to target advertisements at you, and not only is that creepy, but sets a terrible precedent which could now or in the future be exploited by all the wrong sorts of people. plus google the company is a big ponzi scheme which benefits from hype in the complicit mainstream press about its prospects in order to justify a grossly inflated stock price which helps insider stock owners make a killing by selling their holdings to mutual funds, pension funds, and others that invest unsuspecting people's money in a bubble that will soon burst...
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
03 May 2005
...In other news, the Nikkei index was up 2.3% on strong earnings reports, porkbelly futures dropped for the third straight day, and "Nobody Gives a Fuck" rallied to close the day at a new all-time high.
pics?
03 May 2005
anyone got pictures of this? that would be dope
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
03 May 2005
Morn makes an excellent point about suggesting positive messages for future rallies, marches and events. (I must have been in a rather uninspired mood not to include them in my first comment, thanks for calling me out on that).

The things we want:

Autonomy, Solidarity, free healthcare for all, free information or (the right to the access to free information), are all good ones... I would tend to want to expand that and suggest a "participatory society" in general, as well as the good more concrete and easily understandable examples you bring up. As well as "A fully democratic or participatory economy", "Democratization of businesses and institutions etc", "polyculturalism", "Nested councils in place of representative democracy" and so on. I think one of the major hurtles that we, as a movement, are facing is that so little time is spent thinking about, coming up with and or debating what we actually want. So that its hard to make more than just vague suggestions with out starting a bit of a argument. (Also the fact that few people will know what I mean by some of my suggestions) One of the things I have been focusing on in my creative and activist endeavors is first learning what alternative visions exist, and second trying to bring them into the sphere of discussion in my communities.

This "Projects for a Participatory Society" site is an excellent resource that has collections of article. Essays and texts on vision for a future society, in case anyone is interested:
http://www.zmag.org/pps.htm

I have also put together a collection of the ones I have found personally most intriguing on my site, which you can see here:
http://capedmaskedandarmed.com/thoughtcrimes/index.html

Oh and gmail is my junk mail account, which I think is fitting, don’t you?
Re: Anti-Capitalists on the March in Boston
03 May 2005
word Jonathan. we absolutely need to have more discussion about our vision for the future--not in the sense of calling dogmatically for things, but in the spirit of getting people to open their minds to the alternatives that are possible--i'll check the sites you link to... anyone know of an existing discussion group that deals with "the vision thing"?