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  • 05.01.17

Starbucks isn’t taking any chances this May Day

The coffee giant’s flagship Reserve and Roastery in Seattle’s Capitol Hill—an Apple Store-like temple to the Starbucks brand—has become a gleaming tourist attraction since it opened in 2013. It’s also become a stark symbol of the city’s high-speed gentrification, and an obvious target for the smash-and-run protesters expected at this evening’s anti-capitalist May Day march. So last night, Starbucks continued an annual International Workers Day tradition: boarding up the store’s giant windows.

The anarchist and anti-fascist groups that have been causing mayhem in Seattle since at least 2012 are not to be confused with groups demonstrating across the city earlier in the day on Monday, including anti-war veterans and advocates for immigrant rights, climate justice, and housing rights. (While city workers are being given an unpaid day off as a “day of conscience,” groups of police officers—on bike, foot, and horseback—are on guard across the city.) Across the country, labor and immigrants’ rights groups also called for a general strike on Monday to boycott President Trump’s policies, in a repeat of February’s “Day Without Immigrants.” 

Among Seattle’s many other marches today: a “March on Amazon,” aimed at making demands of the city’s ever-growing tech giant, including funding for local public housing, transportation, and a universal basic income for locals.

AP