The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #37837   Message #529159
Posted By: Ron Olesko
16-Aug-01 - 10:04 AM
Thread Name: Folk Alliance vs. NAACP Part 2
Subject: RE: Folk Alliance vs. NAACP Part 2
I'm hoping that everyone who sees that there is only one morally right path and have focused their attention on the FA are also doing their best to boycott other companies.

Microsoft, Apple, Compaq, Dell, IBM, and other companies whose products we support (the evidence that we are reading this note proves that we use one or more of these companies products)have not (to my knowledge) issued any statements that they won't use Adams Mark hotels. I'm sure their executives book rooms with the hotel, hold conferences and trade shows at the hotel, and continue to do business with them. I would guess that we should probably stay off the Internet until we can be sure they support the boycott.

Also, the NAACP is considering another boycott which we should be aware of. This note appeared in a newsletter from Cynthia Turner Cynopsis: "For the second time in two years, the NAACP has again threatened to boycott the television industry, saying minorities still are not found in positions of power within the industry. Said NAACP President Kweisi Mfume: "I still can't understand why after 50 years of television there aren't any African Americans who can green-light a show, hire and fire a director or make any real decisions.'' The NAACP has issued a 36-page report which finds the areas most lacking are in television news, public affairs and sports at the major networks; and in the programming area, minorities are rarely found in the positions of writers or producers. In preparing for a boycott, the NAACP has identified television's 50 biggest advertisers and determined which of their products are used the most by African Americans. Mfume said he is preparing "to do battle" and is also considering the possibility of legal action against the industry as a whole. As he did in 1999 when the NAACP threatened to boycott the television industry, Mfume says one of the four big networks will be targeted for a boycott, though he declined to say which. A meeting of the NAACP national board is scheduled in October, at which time Mfume will outline his plans going forward. According to a study issued by the Screen Actors Guild, minority actors made up 23% of all film and primetime television roles last year, the highest percentage in the past nine years. In the year 2000, there were 53,134 SAG contracts signed for performing roles. Of those 53,134, 14.8% were filled by black actors, 4.9% Latinos, 2.6% Asian-Pacific Americans and 0.6% by Native Americans."

I don't want to be misconstrued - I fully believe that a changes in policies of companies like Adams Mark and the TV industry (where I make my living) is important to social change. I fully support boycotts, but I want to work to finding solutions and improving conditions. I'm sure the NAACP wants to resolve this and the boycott is putting pressure on Adams Mark to fix the problem and make sure it doesn't happen again. The object isn't to put Adams Mark or the FA out of business, it is to correct a wrong. That is the purpose of any boycott. Hopefully the FA will be more sensitive in the future, and those of us who are members will remember this issue when it comes time to vote for FA leaders.

I worry that, especially with anonymous postings, that some people might be using this boycott to vent their frustrations at the FA, which are valid frustrations - the organization is far from perfect. Folk music existed before they arrived and it will exist if they cease to be. I just hope that those who are adamant about boycotting the FA will have the same committment with other companies and industries that are dealing with places like Adams Mark.

Ron