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May Day Marches Bring Out Protesters, Many of Which Have an Anti-Trump Agenda

May Day used to be a festive celebration similar to what Americans experience on Memorial Day or the Fourth of July. In the late 1800’s, as the international workers’ movement spread to bring about better working conditions, the day kept evolving into a socialist protest.

More recently, in America, unions and immigration rights groups have used the occasion to voice their political demands.

In Philadelphia, around 1,000 teachers called in sick to set up picket lines at schools. they were joined by supportive parents in some instances. the school district said administrators and substitute teachers would fill in to keep schools open and avoid class disruption.

While union members traditionally march on May 1 for workers’ rights in countries around the world, the day has become a rallying point for immigrants in the U.S. since massive demonstrations were held on the date in 2006 against a proposed immigration enforcement bill.  In recent years, immigrant rights protests shrank as groups diverged and shifted their focus on voter registration and lobbying.”

Given the Trump effort to temporarily halt immigration from select Middle Eastern and African nations, organizers are hoping for more participation in rallies this year. Immigrant rights groups are aligning with Muslim organizations, feminists and other left-wing groups to form a united front against Trump administration policies.

Unfortunately for those organizations advocating a traditional labor agenda, radical groups like the anarchist Antifa are using the day to threaten violence. Already in Washington D.C., Antifa supporters showed up carrying Communist and North Korean flags. Antifa protesters were responsible for the attack on police in Paris in which several police officers were set on fire.

Reports of other violent protests came from Turin, Italy, and Istanbul, Turkey.