San Francisco Immigration March

As I walked to work at around 10:30AM, I got a chance to see about 4,000 immigrant marchers gathered at Yerba Buena Gardens behind the Metreon. There was a Mayan dance troupe dancing for the crowd accompanied with music and chanting. It was definitely a festival atmosphere as they prepared to head to the Embarcadero to start marching to the Civic Center. Sadly, I didn’t have a camera on me (this is a Chronicle photo by Frederic Larson).

As I walked around the crowd on Mission Street due to the large overflow I saw ex-mayor Willie Brown. As always he was decked out in a three piece suite and wearing a hat. He must have been hot as hell because it was sunny and almost 80F degrees today. In any case, he seemed totally incognito as he walked through the crowd, since many of the marchers probably had no idea who he was. He was alone, no entourage, no bodyguards, just checking out the scene. Perhaps he was hoping to be interviewed by reporters about his stance on the issue, who knows?

After I was in my building, which is on Second Street between Mission and Market streets, you could hear the group from Yerba Buena heading to the Embarcadero to Market Street. Later, as they marched down Market, you could hear the marchers from the 11th floor! I went outside to check it out for a bit. It was amazing to see what had to have been about 30,000 strong marching down Market. Not since the Iraq war protests back three years ago have I seen that many people marching in the city. It was an awesome sight to see them be so organized.

The illegal immigrants are an economic force to be reckoned with for sure. I certainly hope that an amicable solution can be reached where these individuals can pay taxes, vote, and pay back for the social services that some of them are already using. Losing them would definitely have an adverse impact to the California economy, since they make up 7 percent of the population. We’ll see what happens.

1 Comment »

  1. “adverse impact”? Without illegal workers, California’s agricultural and construction industries would be devastated. That’s what pisses me off about all the bluster about this: there is _no fucking way_ that anyone really thinks we’re going to expel 10-12 million people that are absolutely depended upon so that food prices can be kept down and construction can be held to under $200 a square foot.

    #1 by Larry O’Brien — May 2, 2006 @ 8:11 pm

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