May Day! May Day!

A Day of Coming Together

May 1st, often called May Day, just might have more holidays than any other day of the year. It’s a celebration of Spring. It’s a day of political protests. It’s a festival, a saint’s feast day, and a day for organized labor. In many countries, it is a national holiday.

Labor Day is still celebrated on May 1 in countries around the world, and it is still often a day for protests and rallies.  It will be no different this year, as The Occupy Movement has called for “A Day Without the 99%” on May 1st, with some organizers announcing that today will be the start of version 2.0.

This May Day demonstration will be the largest of its kind in a half-century and will take place in cities across the U.S.  Tens of thousands of people throughout the U.S. and the world — workers, students, immigrants, professionals, houseworkers — employed and unemployed alike – will take to the streets to unite in a General Strike against “a system that does not work for us.”

It is a day for people to come together, across all those lines which too often divide us — race, class, gender, religion — and challenge the systems that create these divisions.  Some cities have organized neighborhoods and sites into what it terms “Green, Yellow and Red” zones. The safest for protestors (from arrest and harassment) are designated green, the more problematical as yellow, and the more risky as red.

What will be your choice today? Green? Yellow? Red? Will you even be on the streets? Will you choose not to go to work or to school? Will you take a day off from shopping? Or, will you wisely (?) stay above the fray and come home to turn on the news to watch your more committed fellow citizen exercising for you the right to free speech and assembly? I wonder what color you will choose?

Me?  I choose to support a system that does work for us…a charity.  Today, I will be visiting Casa Teresa with my children.  Casa Teresa provides a transformational, comprehensive program for homeless, pregnant women 18 years of age and older who are alone.  We will meet moms, play with their children, donate our gently used items and make a bigger difference helping one another.

“Not a shelter made of bricks, but a heart that understands, that covers, that loves.” – Mother Teresa