May Day Celebration Committee Statement

The May Day Celebration is not a celebration of a political party or ideology. It is the celebration of a new culture; one which is peaceful, just, sustainable, horizontal and tolerant of difference. The music, entertainment, poetry, theatre and conversations that happen at May Day are a microcosm of that new culture being formed within the shell of the old. Our celebrations create an atmosphere of extreme freedom and tolerance, an environment where people of every imaginable background and intersection of oppression are not only welcome, but empowered to participate and share.

We also intend to celebrate the spirit and history of May Day, where workers won the rights to the 8-hour workday and 40-hour workweek in the face of intense state violence and criminalization of unions and organized workers. We aim to highlight the ways that both the struggle and the repression have continued, albeit in changing forms, to this day.

On May Day and every day we embrace the immigrant communities around us. They remind us that the world is full of beautiful and diverse cultures and people. We are convinced that anyone who wants to live here peacefully should be allowed to and that labeling human beings seeking a better living as illegal or aliens is inhumane. This is especially true as we see people migrating to the U.S. from areas hard-hit by neoliberal policies, global financial institutions and corporate takeover of local communities and economies. We say with conviction that everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. By giving a helpful hand to the newcomers among us we honor our past and focus our frustrations towards the true enemies of liberty and self-determination, not those whom we live and work with.

People are paying more and more for basic necessities and working harder and longer for less pay and experiencing increasing strains on their liberty to express dissent. meanwhile, our self-proclaimed leaders pour billions into wars for profit and capitalize from the economic crisis with bailouts and tax breaks. We see them meet disasters in foreign countries as ways to expand military and corporate dominance. Affordable healthcare, housing, food and education- absolute necessities are being scaled back for those who need it the most.

We see all of these things, not as isolated incidents, or as glitches in an otherwise fair system; but as indicative of an unsustainable, unfree, unequal and failing economic system.

May Day is a time for hope and change. May Day is a demand for Solidarity. It is the day that we, as we have since 1886, begin to hold capitalism accountable.

May Day 2015

New Haven Green, CT