May Day of unrest in The City
After a few months of relative quiet, the Occupy movement erupted yesterday, taking to the streets once again in disruptive protest.
May Day protests kicked off Monday night at Dolores Park when a splinter group severed away and began defacing small businesses and launching paint bombs on Valencia Street. Many buildings and about 20 cars were hit by vandalism.
The graffiti left on some businesses condemned “yuppies” and “hipsters,” calling on these so-called groups to vacate areas of the city affected by gentrification.
The vandalism left many with a bitter taste in their mouths about the Occupy movement, including Jeremy Tooker, owner of Four Barrel Coffee. Tooker tweeted:
“Nice work, occupiers. You made me leave my sick kid at home to go clean paint bombs off my windows. That’ll show Wall Street, fellas.”
What occurred in the Mission was a topic of debate for Occupiers. Many believed that it detracted from its message and encouraged police and corporations to continue to attack the movement.
Occupy was also criticized for not keeping its word by hosting a “sleepover” at City Hall to demand better wages and benefits as well as shutting down the Golden Gate Bridge Tuesday morning.
The Service Employees International Union Local 1021 said in a press release that these events were canceled after city workers were told to leave or face arrest.
In addition, 100 ferry workers demonstrated outside of ferry terminals in Larkspur, Sausalito and San Francisco. Service was pre-emptively canceled to avoid disruption on Tuesday.
Occupiers also took over a church on Turk Street owned by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco Tuesday night. Police arrested 26 this morning and cleared the church of all demonstrators.