After attempting to shut down the annual Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree lighting, roughly 200 protestors spilled out of Vanderbilt Avenue near Grand Central Station this evening and marched east on 42nd Street.
They carried signs saying “I cannot breathe,” referring to the death of Eric Garner after a struggle with the NYPD. They also marched with arms raised, referring to the supposed stance armed robbery suspect Michael Brown took before being shot by Officer Darren Wilson in self-defense.
The chanted “shut it down, shut it down” a reference to the Christmas Tree lighting only a few blocks away. The protesters had announced they intended to shut down the lighting which brings thousands of New Yorkers and people from out of town to jam the streets all around one of the busiest areas of New York City at one of the years busiest times.
It would have been remarkably difficult for the protesters to achieve their goal because the sidewalks around Rockefeller Center were closed down with metal barriers stopping people from crossing Fifth Avenue and even some of the side streets. The side streets leading into Rockefeller Center were blocked from vehicular traffic as well. Cops were everywhere.
Uniformed New York City police followed the protesters from a polite distance. The protesters proceeded along 42nd Street and out of sight, police in tow.