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By Robert M. Utley

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L.A. Paves Way on May Day

Posted on May 2, 2010

May Day demonstrators in Los Angeles march down Broadway toward City Hall.

According to police estimates, as many as 60,000 marchers took to the streets of downtown Los Angeles on Saturday in a show of support for comprehensive immigration reform and against laws like Arizona’s recently passed SB 1070.

The L.A. rally was but one of dozens in cities across the country on May Day, including one in front of the White House in Washington, where 35 people were arrested. —JCL

Los Angeles Times:

Galvanized by Arizona’s tough new law against illegal immigrants, tens of thousands of marchers took to the streets in Los Angeles on Saturday as the city led the nation in May Day turnout to press for federal immigration reform.

As many as 60,000 immigrants and their supporters joined a peaceful but boisterous march through downtown Los Angeles to City Hall, waving American flags, tooting horns and holding signs that blasted the Arizona law. The legislation, which is set to take effect in midsummer, makes it a crime to be in Arizona without legal status and requires police to check for immigration papers.

Though the crowd was roughly half as large as police had projected, it was the largest May Day turnout since 2006, when anger over federal legislation that would have criminalized illegal immigrants and those who aid them brought out more than 1 million protesters nationwide. Since then, most activists have deemphasized street actions in favor of change at the ballot box through promoting citizenship and voter registration.

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, May 3, 2010 at 6:52 am Link to this comment

What were seeing is not so much a rally protesting Arizona’s new law, but the rise of Mexican Nationalism in the United States.

We need a moratorium on all immigration, legal and otherwise for the next 10 years.

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By Miko, May 2, 2010 at 12:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Since the Democrat’s proposal for ‘comprehensive
immigration reform’ is to take the worst aspects of
the Arizona plan and apply them to everyone (e.g.,
biometric ID cards as a condition for employment), I
certainly hope that the crowd is really just against
the Arizona law (and that, when the Obama immigrant
plan comes around, the crowd opposing it will be
equally large).

May Day is traditionally a day of labor solidarity
and I’d hate to think that the demonstrators were in
any way trying to show support for a bill that’s
intended to make it more difficult for their
compatriots (who crossed an imaginary line without a
government permission slip) to get a job.

Immigration is a personal matter between an
individual and her feet.  Let’s get the government
out of it.

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