POLL: May Day Protests Explode in Downtown Seattle

What have you seen and what do you think? How much do you care?

May Day protests occurred in downtown Seattle today and around the country, and police arrested a few individuals and some businesses were damaged.

In Seattle, some protestors, identified as about 30 Black Block protestors, smashed windows of large banks and corporate businesses, and vehicles have been damaged.

KOMO Radio is reporting that Seattle City Hall has been locked down.

Mayor Mike McGinn said in a press conference today about 2:45 p.m. that he signed a special order allowing police to confiscate items that might be used as weapons from the remaining 300 protesters in Westlake Center. Undercover police are reportedly in the crowd.

More protests are scheduled for 3 p.m. and 4 p.m.

Here’s links to coverage from Seattle-PI.com and SeattleTimes.com.

Do you work or have been downtown today, tell us what’s going on? Post photos and comments on Patch below. Also, if you can or can’t leave your building safely let us know.

Shoreline-LFP Patch has contacted Occupy protestors who may be in the middle of things and requested comment. 

Check back for an update.

Also do you agree with the sentiment of the protestors? Do you agree or disagree with their tactics?

Tell us in the comments. 

Do you think corporations and the federal government are unjust to the average person, and are working together, seemingly intentionally, to victimize their some or all customers and citizens?

Or do you think corporations are basically right, and just have minor flaws, and people need to calm down and wait for opportunities to develop?

And do you think the Obama Administration do anything about corporate corruption or are their powers limited?



Nikolas Scott James Kenney May 01, 2012 at 11:50 PM
Watched a large group come down 1st Ave from out of my window heading toward Pike St. Shouting "Join Us!!!" and had a large police escort with several police SUV's!
Bob MacDonald May 02, 2012 at 01:44 AM
Heh...the poll's wording is fun ;) Corporation are nothing more or less than groups of people working toward a common goal in the economic sphere. No different than unions or any other collective group with common economic interests. It's currently in vogue to bash corporations without any regard to the reality of what a corporation is. It is really juvenile, really. Corporations aren't 'right' or 'wrong' any more or less than any other group of people. Corporations are not all 'just' or 'unjust'...what a peculiar way to look at a group of people who come together for mutual economic benefit. Should the power of corporations be limited? Not any more than you would limit the rights of any other group of people. It makes a difference when you use the word "rights" rather than the word "power". After all, "rights" is the correct word because that is what groups of people acting in their common economic interest have: rights. Maybe you can't relate to corporations because you aren't a member of that group of people. But if that was the case, then you wouldn't be able to relate to people who are different than you in other ways, either. Just because you aren't a member of a certain group of people doesn't mean you should demonize them. Right?
Bob MacDonald May 02, 2012 at 01:57 AM
I guess it's the age old question of the collective vs the individual. I'm almost always on the side that says individual rights trump collective rights. Democrats, on the other hand, generally believe that the collective trumps the individual, so it's interesting to see the Left (in general) bashing a democratic collective..which is essentially what a corporation is :)
Tony Dondero (Editor) May 02, 2012 at 02:52 AM
Agreed. Unfortunately, demonizing has a long history in America and elsewhere. Demonizing seems to have an economic, legal or social purpose, i.e. these people are "bad" therefore they don't deserve XYZ. To simplify things (a lot) you could say that in America, that the rulemakers decided that woman are bad so let's not allow them to vote. Black people are bad so let's enslave them and deny them opportunities. Chinese people are bad so let's exclude them. Japanese people are bad so let's deny them property and citizenship. Vietnamese people are bad so let's screw with their country. Maybe in some hoods white people are bad so let's beat them up. Corporations can be helpful or bad depending on who are you talking to. Rush Limbaugh, Fox News, MSNBC seem to have made demonizing an art form and have carved out their niches---maybe we all do to lesser extent. Activists who actually, may or may not be liberal feel their demonizing of things like smoking, guns, alcohol (Mothers Against Drunk Drivers) may result in change. But then again, that's demonizing bad behavior that may infringe on the rights of others. Do corporations infringe on the "rights" of others? It depends, again on how you perceive that.
Bob MacDonald May 02, 2012 at 05:15 AM
In America, the 'rulemakers' are the people...the voters...you and I. So you and I would decide that women are bad and we shouldn't let them vote. The only problem with that is the Constitution, which doesn't allow us to discriminate in that way. That is how things actually work in America. Those are things government might or might not do. But those are good examples of what a group of people with their own agenda might do. Governments, unions, corporations, and other collectives of people are all like that. Do corporations infringe on the rights of others? No more or less than other collectives. Well, probably less than governments. There are good collectives and bad collectives, just as there are good people and bad people. You can't label all corporations as 'good' or 'bad' anymore than you can say all white people are 'good' or 'bad'. It seems that people recognize the latter, but not the former. They are the same thing, folks.
Bob MacDonald May 02, 2012 at 05:24 AM
And I really can't let this go without rewriting it in conservative terms... In America, the 'rulemakers' decided that women should be able to vote, and we fought for and won that right. We decided that every man, black or white, should be free and we fought for that right, too. We decided that people who come here legally should be granted the same opportunities to succeed as the people who were born here. That is the beauty of America. Not the things we've done wrong as we guide our country, but the things we've done right.
Tony Dondero (Editor) May 02, 2012 at 07:13 AM
Well, we should celebrate that for the last four decades every legal citizen of the United States age 18 and older has had the right to vote, a hard earned and fought for right, for some more so than others.
Carolyn Renaud May 03, 2012 at 03:03 AM
The anarchists are just a bunch of loser, cowardly thugs!
Julie Houff May 03, 2012 at 03:17 AM
My son and I joined in the early afternoon and also the early part of the 3pm march (we would have marched longer, but we needed to catch a bus to an appointment). All went very well at this march and the Jan march I partook in. The music was pretty fun, even though the subject matter had a serious tone much of time, as would be expected for a fairly serious movement. I love to dance, so I indulged. It was a challenge to keep up with the younger set, but I managed. As far as tactics, Occupy leaves it up to the individuals as to how to do, but I don't know any Occupier who condones property damage or other violence. Violence begets violence. A group of anarchists used the march as a way to more easily blend in and hide before and after the glass breaking. Anyway, I support Occupy as I am fully aware of what deregulation is doing to our planet and most of its people. Capitalism is no good when Earths resources can be capitalized to be plundered at whatever rate profiteers wish for the main purpose of making profit at the expense of what's best for all and overall. The for-profit financial business has been so deregulated for so long that it's now feeding mostly those who have too much and takes away reasonable chance for most to have anything resembling even a frugal middle class lifestyle. This, and unsavory practices such as derivatives, loan swaps, corporate welfare, war profiteering and the loss of the Glass Stegal Act = high finance and capitalism run amok.
Julie Houff May 03, 2012 at 03:22 AM
Agreed! And it appears, by one of the marcher's video that one of the thugs was wearing Nike shoes while smashing Nike Town's windows. Ironic.
Bob MacDonald May 03, 2012 at 03:48 AM
Totally agree with the need to replace Glass-Steagal. That is one issue in the financial sector, though. So tell me...why are they attacking Niketown? You can count the number of major corps affected by Glass-Steagal on one or two hands. There are thousands of companies in America. The vast majority of them employ people like...your friends and parents...and they contribute to society in a positive way. It's only a few corporations that engage in the activities you mention. If a couple of black guys robbed a bank, would you march against black people? Would you say that black people are running amok? Of course not. But if a couple of corporations do some stuff that...really doesn't affect you very much...then you feel justified in taking to the streets to condemn all corporations. Suddenly it is "capitalism run amok." Nevermind that you've likely been happily engaging in capitalism the entire time. ...
Julie Houff May 03, 2012 at 05:22 AM
How would I know why anarchists who aren't openly affiliated/communicating with Occupy, were breaking certain glass windows? I could speculate, but what's the point. If I could, I would let them answer that. I can tell you why Occupy prefers folks use credit unions, or local small -med size banks instead of the biggest banks. I can tell you that most of Nike's employees are NOT paid living wages. Nike doesn't even monitor/occupy the awful conditions and slave-like pay their overseas employees endure. I can tell you that the government is a little slow to create a better financial set up for our state/country, such as state banks like one of the Dakota has. I assume you know about all that. In what ways would I have been happily engaging in capitalism? Please tell me the ways. BTW, we seem to be talking about corporations and capitalism at the same time. Can we just discuss one of these at a time for better understanding? What are the few corporations you think are the worst "bad apples". I agree that most corporations are not a big social or environmental concern, but that we must Occupy the priority major causes of our big issues right now. Too much money coming from to small few to influence laws that affect all. Not to mention that things have gotten so unfair with our legal system that we basically have preferential treatment of the 1% while many non rich folks are placed into FOR PROFIT PRISONS. If you're happily engaging in capitalism, I get your perspective
Bob MacDonald May 03, 2012 at 03:32 PM
They are clearly 'affiliated' with Occupy...as much as anyone can be 'affiliated' with a group that is leaderless and directionless. We're not seeing these 'anarchists' at any other times. The Occupy movement is easily infiltrated by criminals, rapists, and people who just want to cause mayhem. You can say, "well, that isn't Occupy's fault!" But it is. The Occupy movement has taken no steps at all...that I can see...to ensure that these things don't happen. It is happening over and over again, all across the country. At some point, your excuses fail. You can't just let this stuff go on and claim it has nothing to do with Occupy. It has everything to do with Occupy. Look, if you eat, you're engaging in capitalism, even if you eat for free, because you are helping to create demand. To argue that you don't engage in capitalism is silly. Everyone does. You can't escape it. Some bad apples? Well, I'm not a terribly big fan of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. You must hate them, too. CPB is a big corporation that survives on government handouts. You want to talk about corporate welfare? Hah! CPB gets it in spades. So...should we do away with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting? Somehow, I'm guessing all the lefties are going to say 'no'. :D
Julie Houff May 04, 2012 at 09:05 PM
The question is: What is it about our culture, as it now is, that would influence folks to spend their time, energy and risk getting a bad record for on such actions. I think our corporate warring and very violent culture has influenced these poor folks more than the peaceful/passivist mainstream Occupiers could possible have done. I think the problem started way before Occupy. Marches and global frustrations are just more opportunity for these folks to behave in their preferred ways. Change the culture and you may find the core and long term impetus for the behavior fade away. Peace!


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