104 Bay State Groups Call Out Boston Calling Verdict

September 16, 2019

Last month Kenneth Brissette and Timothy Sullivan – former aides to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh – were convicted in federal court on charges of extortion and conspiracy to commit extortion (both for Brissette, the latter for Sullivan) for their 2014 arm-twisting of the Boston Calling music festival to hire union workers.

Those verdicts led to a flurry of hand-wringing, as a quick search of the Googletron reveals.

 

 

Now comes this two-page ad that a gaggle of advocacy groups ranging from the A. Philip Randolph Institute to the Worcester Interfaith Coalition ran in yesterday’s Boston Globe.

 

 

(The same spread ran in yesterday’s Boston Herald just harder to read.)

Anyway, here’s the nut graf.

 

 

The hardreading staff is the first to admit that our legal knowledge comes entirely from the Jerry Orbach School of Law, but aren’t gender, race, and religion sort of protected classes in Massachusetts? And aren’t unions, well, not?

Regardless, back to that Google search above. Look closely and you’ll see one dissenting voice among the pearl-clutchers: Boston Globe columnist Joan Vennochi, who filed this piece in the wake of the Boston Calling verdicts.

Democracy chilled by campaign against Boston Calling verdict

You know what has a chilling effect on democracy?

Telling concert organizers if they don’t hire union workers they don’t need or want, the City of Boston won’t give them a permit for their event.

That’s what a federal jury found Kenneth Brissette and Timothy Sullivan, two city hall officials, guilty of doing. But in a bizarre twist of logic, some 70 nonprofit organizations, representing environmental, LGBTQ, housing, senior, education, and civil rights advocates, are calling out the verdict as a democracy slayer. Ten Boston city councilors also signed a statement, decrying the case as a “grievous misuse of limited prosecutorial resources in service of a misguided political agenda” and “a terrible precedent.”

Really?

 

Read the whole piece. It’s an effective chaser to the shot taken in yesterday’s double-trucks.


Boston Herald Thinks NAACP = Not Accepting Any Critical Provisions

October 6, 2014

Call it the Watermelon Summit.

The editorial cartoon rumpus at the Boston Herald has arrived at its inevitable destination: A sitdown between Herald editors and the local chapter of the NAACP.

From Sunday’s edition of the flavory local tabloid.

Herald vows to work with Boston NAACP

Curry: Obama cartoon ‘perpetuates stereotype’

The Boston Herald will work with the Boston chapter of the NAACP to address the issues raised by the publication of an editorial page cartoon last week.

The cartoon, focusing on security breaches at the White House, depicted President Obama brushing his teeth as an intruder suggested he try watermelon-flavored toothpaste. Cartoonist Jerry Holbert said he intended no racial overtones and apologized as did the newspaper.

The NAACP yesterday called the Herald apologies “inadequate” and said the publication of the cartoon on the paper’s opinion page “reopened the wounds of race” in Boston. It requested a series of remedies including a community meeting to discuss the editorial page cartoon.

 

That would be Boston NAACP president Michael Curry in the subhead, who got this response from a Herald statement:

​”The Herald has made it clear that this editorial page cartoon was unacceptable in its insensitivity and racial overtones . . .  We look forward to continuing our partnership with the NAACP and meeting with them to address the concerns that arose as a result.”

 

But crosstown at the Boston Globe, the Herald seemed to have a very different message for the NAACP.

Curry said that Herald executives told him they were ready to hear from the black community but had not yet committed to pursuing any action beyond a meeting.

“They said to me that they’re willing to do whatever and they’re expecting to hear from the community at this forum,” he said. “I think what’s important here is they’ve said no to nothing at this point.”

 

Then again, they’ve also said yes to nothing, yes?

Yes.