| NEW YORK, April 3
NEW YORK, April 3 Several hundred demonstrators
protested near Wall Street on Friday against the handling of
the U.S. economic crisis, government bailouts of private banks
and corporations and bonuses paid out at insurer AIG.
Members of worker rights, healthcare and anti-war groups
gathered in the rain holding posters that read "Bail Out the
Unemployed" and "No More $ For Wall St & War."
They also shouted demands for more jobs.
"This crisis is growing more dire everyday with so many
people being kicked out of their home and jobs," said Dustin
Langley, a spokesman for the 'Bail Out The People Movement',
the main protest organizer that called for a moratorium on U.S.
home foreclosures and the creation of a national jobs program.
Hundreds of protesters lined up on Broadway to march past
the headquarters of American International Group (AIG.N) and
close to the New York Stock Exchange and financial giants Bank
of America, Chase and American Express, but were not permitted
on Wall Street.
The rally was held as the rate of unemployment in the
United States soared to 8.5 percent, the highest in 25 years,
after employers cut 663,000 jobs in March.
Michael Feinberg, 51, a rabbi who runs a nonprofit workers
rights group, held a sign that read 'Regulate The Profiteers,'
and argued that corporations who helped plunge the economy into
recession should not have received bailout money.
"That money should have been used to put people to work, to
create jobs and healthcare, not to reward greedy financial
speculators," he said. "This has to be a wake-up call that we
have to change our national priorities about the way we do
business in this country."
Friday's protest follows hundreds of others held around the
United States since the bailout of investment banks began last
year. Another demonstration is planned for Saturday in New York
by the same group.
"These bankers ought to be jailed," said David Sole, 60, a
chemist who traveled from Detroit to express his anger over the
bailouts granted as the U.S. economy continues to slump.
With tears in his eyes, Sole decried the high number of
home foreclosures and job losses suffered by his neighbors in
Michigan. "It's unbelievable this would have happened in my
lifetime. It's like we are in the 1930s," he said.
(Reporting by Christine Kearney, editing by Michelle Nichols
and Anthony Boadle)