A Call to the Workers and Social Justice Movement, to the Anti-war Movement, to all Progressive People:
Revive May Day–International Worker’s Day Unite with
working and poor people all over the world
Jobs not War! Bring the Troops Home Now! Solidarity Makes Us Stronger!
SUNDAY MAY 1ST — 1:00 P.M. RALLY AND MARCH IN UNION SQUARE
14TH STREET IN NEW YORK CITY
The Million Worker March Movement, the Troops Out Now Coalition and scores of other progressive groups are calling for a “JOBS NOT WAR-Bring the Troops Home Now!” MAY DAY RALLY and MARCH in Union Square on Sunday, May 1, beginning at 1:00 p.m.
The rally is part of a campaign across the country to revive May Day in the U.S.
Reclaiming May Day reflects a growing consensus among many of us that the movement can only move forward by fully uniting the anti-war movement with the worker’s movement and with those communities which suffer the most from war, cutbacks, poverty and repression.
This is now more decisive than ever.
It is hardly necessary to review the magnitude of suffering that global capitalism, and in particular the onslaught of U.S. imperialist war, has brought to the people of the world, especially since 9/11. Nor is it necessary to underscore the grave danger that endless war abroad in pursuit of empire and war at home against working and poor people represents.
The empire has demonstrated that if allowed, it will rule the world by military force, and pit worker against worker on a global scale that has no precedent in history, in its quest for profits.
We must unite and organize to meet this danger.
Our challenge is to work harder and act more boldly in linking our struggle against the war to our struggle against the war at home.
You don’t turn off ordinary working people by talking about Palestine, Venezuela, Cuba, Haiti Columbia, North Korea or Iran. On the contrary, workers think about the world a great deal these days. The problem is that they get misinformation from the mainstream media. It’s up to those of us who know better to break things down to people and make all the connections.
Whether our struggle is against union busting and the “Walmartization” of workers’ wages, or unemployment (and underemployment), especially in the Black and Latino communities, or the drive to dismantle what remains of the so called “safety net”–including Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, public education and subsidized housing–let’s bring back May Day and turn that day into a clarion call for a new level of unity.
Recent history has proven once again that we cannot depend on the system’s elections, and its politicians, or any other force but the united power of working and poor people all over the world to accomplish this urgent task.
No single day or demonstration can do this. However, understanding the meaning of May Day–international workers’ day–and embracing its meaning by bringing May Day back is an important part of this process.
No challenge before us as a movement is greater than the need to usher in a whole new epoch of solidarity. May Day is about solidarity. May Day is about standing together. May Day is about uniting against all that imperialism would employ to divide us. May Day is about reaffirming our belief that the future belongs to the majority of the people in the world and not a handful of billionaires.
May Day belongs to the working class.
For this reason the Million Worker March Movement set the reclaiming of May Day 2005 as one of its principal goals at a meeting of regional representatives the day after its historic Oct. 17, 2004 rally at the Lincoln Monument in Washington, D.C.
The Troops Out Now Coalition, which organized the March 19 “Bring The Troops Home Now” march from Harlem to Central Park, has joined MWMM’s call. One of the reasons that the March 19 demonstration began in Harlem was to say what can be expressed better through actions than words sometimes: The struggle against the war in Iraq is also the struggle against the war at home.
MAY DAY–International Workers’ Day–grew out of the struggle of working people in this country more than 100 years ago for an 8-hour work day with a full day’s pay.
All over the world, working and poor people march on May Day to send the message that working and poor people are determined to forge greater unity in the struggle against global capitalism, imperialism and the misery and war it produces.
The main reason why May Day is not widely celebrated or well known in the U.S. is that the system, frightened by the prospect of a worldwide movement of workers and progressive forces, has sought to bury the history of May Day in this country.
This was done for the very same reason that the government has sought to silence and crush radicals, and radical ideas in the labor movement, particularly during the infamous “witch hunt” period of the 1950’s and the progressive and revolutionary movements of the 1960’s. Their war on radicals, and radical ideas like international solidarity, continues today.
Our interest in reviving May Day does not come from nostalgia for times past, but from the need to nurture a higher political consciousness about how important solidarity and political independence is to the strength of our movement.
We don’t need to have a million workers in Union Square on May Day 2005. But enough of us can be there to help set the direction that the movement needs to move in on May Day. And together we can, and we will, do this.
On May Day 2005, let’s bring back that fighting spirit.
* END THE OCCUPATION OF IRAQ, STOP ENDLESS WAR
* WE DEMAND JOBS AT DECENT WAGES, HEALTH CARE, HOUSING AND EDUCATION FOR ALL
* SOLIDARITY WITH IMMIGRANTS WORKERS — WE WILL NOT BE DIVIDED
* HANDS OFF SOCIAL SECURITY
* UNITE AGAINST RACISM AND POLITICAL REPRESSION
* STOP THE REINSTATEMENT OF THE DRAFT
* SOLIDARITY WITH WOMEN, WITH LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL AND TRANS PEOPLE
* SOLIDARITY WITH THE PEOPLE OF THE MIDDLE EAST, ASIA, AFRICA, LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN WHO ARE RESISTING U.S. IMPERIALISM’S DRIVE TO OWN AND EXPLOIT THEM
* SOLIDARITY WITH ALL OF THE PROGRESSIVE MOVEMENTS
* A REBIRTH OF WORLDWIDE SOLIDARITY IS ESSENTIAL TO THE STRUGGLES AHEAD OF US
–NYC MILLION WORKER MARCH MOVEMENT AND THE TROOPS OUT NOW COALITION
Endorsers of Mayday Include:
New York City Labor Against The War
The International Action Center
National Immigrant Solidarity Network
Artist and Activists United For Peace
Brenda Stokely, President DC 1707 AFSCME
NYC Council Member Charles Barron
Chris Silvera, Secretary Treasurer Local 808 IBT/Chairperson, National Black Teamsters Caucus
New York City AIDS Housing Network
NY Coalition To Free Mumia Abu Jamal
New Jersey Solidarity – Activists for the Liberation of Palestine
Harlem Tenants Council
Korea Truth Commission
NISPOP (Network in Solidarity with the People of the Philippines)
Haiti Support Network
Queers For Peace and Justice
New York Committee To Free The Cuban 5
New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines
Al-Awda New York, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition
Homeless Action For Necessary Development
DAMAYAN Migrant Workers Association
International Socialist Organization
Fight Imperialism Stand Together (FIST)
Jersey City Peace Movement
Monterey County Peace Coalition
New England Human Rights Organization for Haiti
People’s Solidarity for Social Progress
The Iraq Solidarity Campaign (UK)
No Draft No Way
Boston Stonewall Warriors
Womens Fightback Network, Boston
Workers World Party
Central New Jersey Coalition for Peace and Justice
Baltimore All Peoples Congress
People Judge Bush
Movement in Motion
SNAFU- Support Network for an Armed Forces Union
Steve Gillis, President, USWA Local 8751 Boston School Bus Union
4 Ways you can help:
1) Endorse the May 1 Rally at: http://www.troopsoutnow.org/may1endorse.html
2) Download flyers at: http://www.troopsoutnow.org/literature.html
3) Become a May 1 Organizing Center – sign up at: http://www.troopsoutnow.org/may1orgcentsignup.html
4) Donate at: http://www.troopsoutnow.org/donate.html
To find out more, go to http://www.troopsoutnow.org or call 212-633-6633