A massive peace demonstration by an estimated 25,000 persons in Chicago today (May 9) remained peaceful and calm in contrast to several campus demonstrations which led up to it.
Demonstrators gathering at start of rally; demonstrators marching to main rally site; and final massive assembly in park.
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Background: A massive peace demonstration by an estimated 25,000 persons in Chicago today (May 9) remained peaceful and calm in contrast to several campus demonstrations which led up to it.
The demonstration was sponsored by the Chicago Peace Council and by the Student Mobilization Committee. Several other local student and non-student organization joined in. The organizing groups obviously made elaborate plans to keep the demonstration peaceful and to obey all the restrictions in their parade and rally permits. An estimated two thousand persons were assigned as parade and rally marshals. Throughout the demonstration they helped the local police contain the crowd in the prescribed area. Some of the marshals even patrolled the rally area collecting litter that might have otherwise been left in the park.
The march was designed to coincide with a similar, but larger, one in Washington D.C. Among the stated purposes for both demonstrations were to protest U.S. military expansion into Cambodia, to protest widespread persecution of blacks in the U.S., and to stage a memorial service for four college students who were slain Monday (May 4) by National Guardsmen at Kent State University in Ohio (midwest U.S.A.).
The demonstration followed a week of campus disorders touched off by the U.S. move into Cambodia and more specifically by the student deaths at Kent State.
In the Chicago demonstration today the group gathered at the Civic Centre Plaza, where they received instructions and began the fifteen-block march to Grant Park to hear speeches on most of the issues under protest.
The demonstrators carried signs attacking President Nixon and his foreign police, and demanding and end to U.S. involvement in any was. Most of the demonstrators were young, college age persons; but a significant number, more than in past peace demonstrations, were much older.