Stinging Gas Sends May Day Protesters Fleeing
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Thousands of protesters in New York demanded an end to income inequality and housing foreclosures. Police fired tear gas to disperse marchers in Oakland, Calif. And black-clad demonstrators smashed windows in Seattle.
Activists across the U.S. joined in worldwide May Day protests Tuesday, with anti-Wall Street demonstrators leading the way in some cities as they tried to recapture the enthusiasm that propelled their movement last fall.
While some protesters clashed with police, the melees were far less violent than ones that erupted last fall when the movement was at its peak. Marches and strikes led to a handful of arrests but no major disruptions.
Many of the rallies, which drew activists pushing a variety of causes, also did not have the same drawing power that gatherings had last year for the Occupy movement or a half-dozen years ago for May Day rallies for immigration reform.
In recent years, activists in the U.S. used May Day to hold rallies for immigrant rights, but the day has been associated for more than a century with workers' rights and the labor movement both in the U.S. and elsewhere.