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Raw cut: The Boston call for a Holiday Buyers Boycott for Justice in #FERGUSON Decision

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From: Melody Adams

To: Young Professionals Network of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts

Cc: “” ; “”

Sent: Tuesday, November 25, 2014 11:09 PM

Subject: Re: Statement on Ferguson, MO Grand Jury Decision & My Proposed Response

Ms. Villarson,

I hope that all is well with you. In your letter below, you wrote:

“We must continue to make change with our dollar – we must support our community businesses in order to lift up our community, therefore lifting our economic influence.” In order to see change we must not only as young professionals but as a community come together to MAKE THE CHANGE. Rise to make your voice be heard. Rise to make your dollar empowered. Rise to make your choice matter.”

I want you to know, that I appreciate your call to action, and agree with you. However, I don’t see a specific call to action that would allow our community, and the masses of outraged people from all over the New England area, to effect real change right now. Therefore, I propose that we use Black Friday-Cyber Monday (the biggest shopping days of the year), and the entire 5 week shopping period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day to demonstrate of our economic strength, desire for change, and show support for our brothers and sisters in Ferguson.

There have been calls for a national Black Friday/ holiday season blackout from clergy, community leaders, and organizations all over the nation (please see links below); and I think that Boston, and our N.E. neighbors, should join that movement, and demonstrate the power and effectiveness of the black community when we work together as one. Since a large portion of all U.S.retail revenue will be generated during the next 5 weeks, there may be no better time for us to “make our voice heard”, flex our economic muscle, and be noticed in a positive way, while supporting local businesses in our own communities.

We can simply issue a call to action (using social media: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and/or YouTube to go viral quickly) to shop only with black-owned businesses, during Black Friday weekend (Thursday November 27th-Monday December 1, 2014), and every Friday during the holiday season (as some cities have proposed); or we can choose our own weekends to protest. A good friend of mine suggested that we conduct a blackout during Kwanzaa, for Ujamaa “Collective Economics” day on December 29th) as well, which is another good idea.

Since no two organizations, outside of the black church, understand the power and impact of active non-violent, economic, civil rights protests better than the Urban League and the NAACP, I have copied Darnell Williams and Michael Curry on this email, and would like their input. So, Ms. Villarson, Mr. Williams, and Mr. Curry, what do you think? Are the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts and the Boston Branch of the NAACP interested in joining the national Black Friday/holiday blackout, or organizing our own economic blackout?

I would greatly appreciate a response at your earliest possible convenience, as our community will need to act quickly to achieve the best results. If we ask all of our members, and contacts, to reach out to their personal networks tomorrow, and on Thanksgiving Day, and spread the “No Justice, No Profit” message, we could make a huge statement, and start some really big conversations! I look forward to hearing back from you, and hope that you each have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Melody L. Adams

After grand jury decision in Ferguson, calls to #BoycottBlackFriday


‘No Justice, No Profit’: Pastor calls for Black Friday
“A pastor in Missouri is among those calling for a boycott of the Black Friday Sales as part of ongoing protests over the fatal shooting of teenager Michael Brown”


A Social Media Push to Boycott Black Friday
“The Justice for Michael Brown Leadership Coalition is encouraging protesters to hit the nation “where it hurts” and boycott any holiday spending.” printed

#NotOneDime: Black Friday Boycotts Planned To Protest printed

Original letter from YPN
: : : : : : : :
From: Young Professionals Network of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts
To: Melody
Sent: Tuesday, November 25, 2014 1:38 PM
Subject: Statement on Ferguson, MO Grand Jury Decision

Good Afternoon YPN’ers, Friends & Supporters,

As we all have seen and heard last night or this morning, the grand jury of Ferguson, MO has decided to not indict Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager on August 9.

Is there disappointment? Yes. Is there anger? Yes. Is there an incredulous belief of the justice system process? Yes. But where do we stand now? Where do we GO FROM HERE?

If you are feeling like me, I am sick and tired of being ‘sick and tired’. This is more than just about race, although race plays a major role. But this is also about social inequality – where urban city dwellers are consistently subjected to increased violence and poor education standards. This is also about economic inequality – where families across the racial spectrum have to decide whether to pay the gas bill or feed their family. This is also about the over militarization of our local police forces and the lack of training that comes with not only using military-grade tools but also as being a law enforcement agency dealing with everyday citizens – not combat.

Protesting is not enough. Marching is not enough. Social media ‘stand-outs’ are NOT ENOUGH. They are merely just the beginning. In order to see change we must not only as young professionals but as a community come together to MAKE THE CHANGE.

We must continue to make change with our pens – writing to our state and federal elected leaders to demand action. We must continue to make change with our voices – attending and participating in community, city and state meetings that involve the communities we live in and care about. We must continue to make change with our dollar – we must support our community businesses in order to lift up our community, therefore lifting our economic influence. We must continue to make changes with our choice – your vote matters in local elections, in state elections and in national elections. If the people WE elect into office are not doing what their constituents are asking them to do than it is time they understand the power of the people.

If you are ready to MAKE THE CHANGE than I ask that you rise. Rise to make your pen be respected. Rise to make your voice be heard. Rise to make your dollar empowered. Rise to make your choice matter.

Rise with me and the Young Professionals Network of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts as we work to Empower Our Community and Change Lives.


Yours in The Movement,

Rachelle N. Villarson
President, 2014 – 2016
Young Professionals Network of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts
88 Warren St.
Roxbury, MA 02119


Written by BostonMurrell

November 26, 2014 at 6:15 pm

As National Urban League delegates depart, the Boston black digerati rolled in this..

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Featuring Boston Black digerati: The Blackstonian, Bostonoffline, Eworkstyle, Ethnic Online, YPULEM & Talia Whyte with a mention about where to see Urban League financial information regarding use of funds in Boston.

+ + (9 hrs ago) This may have been the last tweet from the official social media speaker of the National Urban League 2011: JOBS Rebuild America Boston Conference

( ) and we quote….

” “National Urban League  @NatUrbanLeagueNational Urban League 2011 Conference comes to a close!  ( in Boston, July 27-30th). Thanks for everything BAH-STAN @ULEM, it’s been an empowered time!  (2012), See you in New Orleans! #NUL11” ”

### Black digerati roll Boston:
As a special gift to conference delegates from out of town, the Greater Boston community and for independent business owners,  The BlackStonian  media operation released  a special Guide To Black Boston Business Guide.
Buy it here, all year – its only a $1.00 online and well worth it!

REPORTERS REALLY DEVELOPED, RESEARCHED AND PUBLISHED PRINT, WEB  & VIDEO STORIES ABOUT  the conference from a Black (Roxbury) perspective that are unique. 

### was on it!  announcing winners and plugging their favorite teams at Saturday’s Entrepreneur’s $10K business plan award session. View the BostonOffline tweet stream  of event coverage, party scenes and more.  BostonOffline has an interesting entrepreneur’s working group called ECHO. Its a support network and looking good. Give them a shout out too.


I dodged her request for an on-camera interview..there she was with microphone battling it out with the big media production crews at SOBB Hynes and doing it well!  The impressive, independent  Talia Whyte served as a one-woman field production crew feeding hi-quality content into the social networks of Urban League national and YPN local.
She’s an innovative  social media technology instructor, an ex-Jamaicaway Books sales associate and one to watch regardless if she is conducting classes at BNN-TV, supporting Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts Young Professionals group ( did you know if you are 21-42 years of age you can be a YPer? ) or following her other passions.  Bookmark!/taliawhyte

ETHNIC ONLINE staged  the  Seaport Hotel “End of Summer Party Friday night.” It stood out with the entertaining performances of SINBAD and Ledisi with Eric Bennet to close out the week.  Bookmark


To Be Sure, There were a Million “Happy Moments”created by conference supporters and organizers this year!#  YPNULEM is the Twittertimeline ( they have a web site too) for the Young Professionals Network of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts team and it shows.

# To wit: this Blackstonian story  titled ” 7/30/2011 – Urban League Convention Held In Boston Missed Opportunities for Black Boston has some legs too.

Blackstonian named and quoted black Boston business people you are likely to know.  The focus of it was on what Black Boston independent business owners said about consultant, supplier and vendor contracting with ULEM business officials procuring the services for insuring that Boston’s hosting of the National Urban League Conference 2011: JOBS Rebuild America had the products, services and talent it needed. Oh no they didn’t get paid! Oh no they didn’t according to the article.
Remember,  private companies and non-profits does not have to institute open bidding on contracts, but at end of the year, a non-profit such as ULEM Boston must file financials. The independent non-profit filing site is going to have it as will the Corporate Records Division at the State of Massachusetts.    An annual report must be filed and its available online with certain documents but to see more, learn more, you’ll have to take a trip down to the Secretary of State’s office.

The Urban League has been fund raising for over 100 years and overstand the game, to our benefit of course. Funders will often require restrictions on public disclosure about use of their donations and investments.

The headquarters are located at Urban League: 120 Wall Street,  New York, NY 10005 ,  ph: (212) 558-5300,  fax: (212) 344-5332

If your mind is twisting cause you want to see every single line-item of the UL Boston’s conference week, forget about it! You’ll never know.

The Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts may wish to release, through its Housing and Economic Investment CAC, a high-level summary breakdown of the financial receipts and spending allocated to the July 27-30th National Conference and July 28th, 2011.

## #
Stats that will blow you away

They said: 

Economically, it makes sense to increase our market share as a convention and tourism destination for diversity and attract our share of the $270 billion spent each year in the country by this market segment.They are:

Boston City Councilor and the first African American woman elected to the council, Ayanna Pressley is vice chair of the Council’s Arts, Film, Humanities & Tourism Committee and James Rooney is executive director of the MCCA. MCCA is the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority

From our archives —

400,000 African Americans visited Boston and Massachusetts (pdf) 
 and were 2.7% of all domestic travel visits to the state that year.  –  Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism survey, 2003.

2011 – From the EWorkstyle Urban Events editor’s desk

Media CAC ( community advisory committee ) at work already and here’s what’s up.

This link carries you direct to a broad, comprehensive look at people who volunteered on the State of Black Boston 2011 media advisory committee.

Members were selected by the media chair of ULEM. Members constituted CAC, the community advisory committee.

Its goal was to consolidate points of view from previous Boston public gathering where the issue of Boston Black media was discussed, then place onto a long list some things blacks in Boston can do better in media.

That list was edited and published in the official State of Black Boston 2011 SOBB2011 report executive summary booklet distributed at conference locations. You can also download it online below.

In the reporting by Eworkstyle publisher and media consultant Paula Robinson-Deare, see SOBB media group volunteers and expert panelists:  Janine  Fondon of Unity First, Kelly Chunn of Kelly Chunn Associates, Howard Manly of the Bay State Banner The Boston Banner, Melody Adams, the ULEM media panel chairperson and host of “Speak Up Boston,” Manolina Charlotin, Haitian Reporter newspaper / DOTnews, William Murrell, III producer of the blackBoston online mashups: / / / @blackboston on Twitter;  and Karl Nurse, Karen Holmes Ward, Collette Phillips, Jackie Jenkins-Scott.



Written by BostonMurrell

July 31, 2011 at 9:29 am

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