Photos: Day after violent clash, protestors march unhindered downtown
Rally leads from West Loop to Boeing headquarters, then to President Obama’s campaign headquarters
05/21/2012 5:16 PM
The morning after a violent clash between protestors and police ended in dozens of protests in the South Loop, marchers took to the streets of downtown Chicago to air their grievances once again.
Beginning at the West Loop’s Union Park around 9 a.m., a relatively small crowd marched down Lake Street to Boeing’s corporate headquarters at Washington Street and the Chicago River. There, protestors threw paper planes and decried Boeing’s work as a military contractor.
But as the marchers began moving through the streets again, the rally gained in size, swelling to a few hundred protestors at times. The message kept coming back to the previous day’s events, where dozens of protestors were arrested for not leaving the site of a massive rally that culminated at Michigan Avenue and Cermak Road quickly enough.
After weaving their way through the Loop with a police escort Monday afternoon, the group finally made their way to One Prudential Plaza at 130 E. Randolph St., the site of President Obama’s campaign headquarters in the early afternoon. There, protest leaders contended that Sunday’s clash was caused by the police, not the protestors.
“I saw police pushing aggressively, and that’s what started this. Let’s be clear about that,” said Andy Thayer, one of the leaders from the Coalition Against NATO and G8’s War and Poverty Agenda, who had organized Sunday’s rally.
Thayer said the police’s tactics in swiftly clearing protestors out of the intersection after the rally was over the top.
“There was no pressing national security need to clear one damn intersection in the city of Chicago,” Thayer said. “You could have let the people who wanted to stay there do that, even though our permit was over. But no, you decided to be a big macho man.”
Photos and video by BEN MEYERSON/Staff