Fox Overlooks The American Origins Of May Day
The Fox show America Live introduced  an April 30 segment on May Day protests planned by Occupy Wall Street by playing black-and-white newsreel footage of a military parade in Moscow in the days of the Soviet Union in celebration of the holiday. Subtle.
America Live host Megyn Kelly continued this narrative, saying: "Six decades ago, the first of May was best known as a day of celebration in Moscow and Havana, as workers in the Communist Party marked what they called their accomplishments."
Fox contributor Charles Payne echoed this red-baiting smear later that day on Your World, said that May Day "dovetails into a big, giant communist holiday":
But Fox is obscuring the origin of this holiday, which began in 19th-century America.
According to the Chicago Historical Society's Encyclopedia of Chicago, the origins  of May Day date back to a weeklong strike in Chicago that began on May 1, 1867, after a state law limiting the work day to eight hours was ignored. Two decades later, Chicago's labor movement organized another campaign for an eight-hour workday on May 1, 1886. Several episodes of violence erupted between police and strikers and other supporters of the movement that week, and the movement was suppressed .
Although communist nations adopted the holiday in the 20th century, the origin of May Day is undeniably American. Instead of celebrating the American ideal of an eight-hour workday, a 40-hour workweek, and weekends off, the virulently anti-union  Fox News is painting the struggle for these standards of American labor as something foreign and to be feared.