A few dozen protesters marched against capitalism Wednesday morning, the first of May Day commemorations that are expected to draw thousands downtown by afternoon.
Waving black and red flags, the protesters — many wearing masks and black bandanas across their faces — gathered at Cityfront Plaza before marching on Michigan Avenue and through the Gold Coast with police close behind.
“I think Americans have become accustomed to being systematically complacent, and I think people need to get used to seeing certain forms of rebellious expressions” said one marcher, who would only identify himself as Carlos “Contrajefe,” Spanish for “against chief.”
Some marchers occasionally tried marching on the street before being chased back onto the sidewalk by police.
At least one protester was arrested after refusing to return to the sidewalk.
In the past, May Day has been marked by rallies and marches in support of labor unions and immigration.
Occupy Chicago planned a rally in Union Park at 1 p.m., followed by an march for immigration reform to Federal Plaza at 3 p.m. the Chicago Federation of Labor planned a rally at Haymarket Monument, Randolph and Desplaines, at 2:30 before joining the march to Federal Plaza.
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) was expected to address the rally at Federal Plaza at 4 p.m.
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