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If Past May Days Are Any Indication... Tuesday Could Get Ugly

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...Stand fast, then, Oh Workers, your ground, Together pull, strong and united: Link your hands like a chain the world round, If you will that your hopes be requited.

Tomorrow marks a significant day for the progressive political machine as May Day demonstrations, led by socialists, anarchists, Occupy Wall Street and other left-wing activists across the nation, commence. Noting this disturbing reality, Glenn Beck reminded viewers on Monday that with the onset of May 1, progressives are launching their own Tahrir Square. Their goals, according to Beck, are to "conquer and transform" through "dividing and distracting."

"A house divided against itself cannot stand," he observed.

Below, Beck explains progressives' tactics and the approaching May Day

But to understand the significance of the onslaught one needs to know May Day's history -- its violent recent-past, and its entire purpose for being.

Origins

Also dubbed "International Workers' Day," May Day derives its origin in mid-1800s Australia, where it began as a proletarian "holiday celebration," or strike, championing the eight-hour workday. The first to follow the example were the American and later, European laborers. Its recognition only soared, however, after Chicago police opened fire on May Day demonstrators, killing several, during what is now dubbed the "Haymarket Massacre" of 1886. While police were only reacting to lit stick of dynamite that had been thrown into their ranks, it was the image of the abused, disenfranchised worker, who became the martyr.

To eclipse any negativity that might surround each year's commemorations moving forward, President Grover Cleveland proposed the U.S. move its Labor Day to September 1. Nonetheless, May 1 is an officially recognized holiday in some 80 countries around the world and has consistently been used as a platform for socialists, anarchists and organized labor unions to march in solidarity as they rail against capitalism. Notably, May Day had become a holiday of utmost importance for the former Soviet Union, often taking place in the Red Square, leaders of the Communist Party waved to the adulation of the crowd while standing atop Vladimir Lenin's mausoleum.

On the surface May Day demonstrations here in America may seem benign enough, but few realize how steeped in violence the "holiday" has consistently been across Europe and other parts of the world.

 

Recent years

Often, riots break out amidst the myriad picket-lines, strikes and other demonstrations. In London alone, anti-capitalist May Day demonstrators have been known to routinely clash with police after going on violent binges. The marauding and vandalizing of local establishments is a mainstay for the activists, as is defacing public property -- particularly historic landmarks. In one instance, rioters even attempted to burn down a major supermarket while staff were still inside.

Review the following video clips to glean insight into what typical May Days look like around the world.

London, May Day 2000

Berlin, 2011

May Day 2010 in Greece

As it turns out, 20 years ago essentially to the day, the Rodney King riots broke out during May Day as well. 

 

While volumes could be written about the true face of May Day riots in all its violent glory, we decided to let the following pictures speak for themselves.

 

A  far cry from Walter Crane's flowery depiction in his 1894 poem, The Workers' Maypole:

Now again while the green earth rejoices

In the bud and the blossom of May

Lift your hearts up again, and your voices,

And keep merry the World's Labour Day.

...Stand fast, then, Oh Workers, your ground,

Together pull, strong and united:

Link your hands like a chain the world round,

If you will that your hopes be requited.

When the World's Workers, sisters and brothers,

Shall build, in the new coming years,

A lair house of life—not for others,

For the earth and its fullness is theirs.

 

If past May Days are any indication, Tuesday, May 1, 2012, could get ugly.

 

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