May Day and International Workers Day Rallies Today
Could the Occupy movement get a shot of reinvigoration today? Adbusters, the Canadian magazine that initiated the Occupy Wall Street movement, and its related network of activists (or "culture jammers," as they call themselves) are calling on people to gather outside of Goldman Sachs offices around the world and "shut down this criminal corporation for several hours or more." There's a Goldman office in Miami. No word on whether any actions are planned there for today, but there are some good old-fashioned protests elsewhere in Broward and Palm Beach.
Workers of the world, unite at the Federal Building in downtown Fort Lauderdale on Broward Boulevard from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. OK, you don't have to be an actual, you know, "worker" worker. And things being what they are, we don't expect you to have a job, even. But it is the traditional international workers' holiday (except here in the good old U-S-of-A, where the powers-that-be in the late 19th Century arranged to honor working men and women in September, on Labor Day, rather than have them associate with any damned reds). So it's a good day to gather and speak out against injustice.
The organizers appear to be a group called People's Opposition to War, Imperialism, and Racism (POWIR), who came into being in early March. Their chief initial focus (on Facebook, at least) has been drone warfare, the Middle East, and the "War on Terror," (though we're not supposed to call it that anymore).
Adbusters' image of Goldman CEO Llyod Blankfein.
Fire Ant does find them a bit unbalanced. Western imperialism is no phantom and hasn't done any favors to the people of the world that couldn't have been done without gunboats. The legacy is awful. But the whole damned human race has a common history of oppression and exploitation, in every sort of culture. From the Aztecs to ancient China, hierarchy is universal. For today's rally, though, POWIR is all about the home front: "tak[ing] a stand against crushing budget cuts, the ongoing attacks on public education, and the war on undocumented immigrants" and accentuating the positive: "We demand Jobs and Justice!"
We're down with that.
There's also another May Day rally from 4 to 6 p.m. hosted by the MoveOn Council of South Palm Beach/North Broward.
"In the late 1800s, in our own Chicago, workers rallied in support of the 8 hour day. Many died during the protest. May 1st became International Workers Day in their honor and is celebrated in more than 80 countries around the world. Despite many gains since (including the 8 hour day in the US), workers still suffer from non-living wages, dangerous working conditions, workplace discrimination, wage theft and more even as a small percentage of the population make huge financial gains. Let's stand together for workers around the world in defense of their basic human rights."
For more info on that one, call 561-702-3129 or 561-523-2739.
Fire Ant -- an invasive species, tinged bright red, with an annoying, sometimes-fatal sting -- covers Palm Beach County. Got feedback or a tip? Contact Fire.Ant@BrowardPalmBeach.com.