Facebook Will Let Workers Join Glorious May Day Protests

North Korea parade (Jon Chol Jin / Associated Press)
Jon Chol Jin / Associated Press

Facebook, Inc. is encouraging its employees, and the workers at its outsourced labor contractors, to walk out on International Workers’ Day — May Day — and join unions, communists and Black Bloc enforcers in protesting President Donald Trump’s immigration restrictions.

According to Bloomberg, Facebook posted on its internal forum April 14 that all their workers have the right to walk out or just not show up on May 1. The company proclaimed that this is not a new policy.

But shortly thereafter, Facebook warned it will retaliate against any of its contractors for staff security guards, janitorial staff, bus drivers and other campus service providers if they fail to support the edict giving workers the day off.

A Facebook spokesperson told Mashable, “At Facebook, we’re committed to fostering an inclusive workplace where employees feel comfortable expressing their opinions and speaking up.” He added, “We support our people in recognizing International Workers’ Day and other efforts to raise awareness for safe and equitable employment conditions.”

Silicon Valley May Day protests have grown over the last three, years as members of the International Longshoreman’s Union shut down the docks, and members of the Service Employees International Union shut down BART trains and city halls.

Facebook app has been at the center of organizing a series of Silicon Valley social justice rallies and protests against President Trump, capitalism, climate change, racism, sexism and immigration law enforcement, which kicked off with the March 14 Pi Day, led by Dex Torricke-Barton, former speechwriter for Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

May Day worker celebrations trace their roots back to Chicago’s Haymaker Square Riot, when the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions, which became the American Federation of Labor, proclaimed that “eight hours shall constitute a legal day’s labor from and after May 1, 1886” and led 350,000 U.S. workers on a nationwide walk-out.

According to the authoritative Marxist.org website, hand bills passed out that day stating:

  • “Workingmen to Arms!
  • War to the Palace, Peace to the Cottage, and Death to LUXURIOUS IDLENESS.
  • The wage system is the only cause of the World’s misery. It is supported by the rich classes, and to destroy it, they must be either made to work or DIE.
  • One pound of DYNAMITE is better than a bushel of BALLOTS!
  • MAKE YOUR DEMAND FOR EIGHT HOURS with weapons in your hands to meet the capitalistic bloodhounds, police, and militia in proper manner.”

On the fourth day of the protests, strikers tossed a bomb into a line of 180 policemen that were demanding the crowds disperse. With 7 policemen dead and 60 injured, the police opened fire and killed 4 protestors and injured 70 others.

The Chicago City Council on March 25, 1992, officially granted historic landmark status to the Haymarket Square as a significant event in American and world labor history.


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