White supremacist Rally Fizzles, Overtaken by Massive Anti-Racism March

Organizers of a self-described “free speech” rally in Boston Saturday were expecting to see a big turnout, with attendees from the same white supremacist groups that marched on Charlottesville last weekend. Massachusetts members of the Ku Klux Klan had announced their plans to participate.

But turnout on the white supremacist side was incredibly small. They were outnumbered, by the thousands, by counter-protestors, who flooded Boston Common and the surrounding streets to rally against neo-Nazis, the KKK, and racist violence.

The “free speech” rally was, by all measures, a resounding failure. According to the Washington Post, “By 1 p.m., the handful of rally attendees had left the Boston Common pavillion, concluding their event without the planned speeches. A victorious cheer went up among the counter-protesters, as many began to leave. Hundreds of others danced in circles and sang, ‘Hey hey, ho ho. White supremacy has got to go.’”

A number of “physical altercations between police and counter-protestors” and “skirmishes” between neo-Nazis and counter-protestors have been reported from the scene, where tensions are high. But so far, it does not appear that Boston’s rallies have experiened violence on the scale of what plagued Charlottesville last weekend. (Protestors were escorted in and out of the Common by Boston police, Buzzfeed reported.)

On Thursday, Tina Fey made a much-maligned appearance on a Weekend Update special edition of Saturday Night Live. She jokingly encouraged those who would oppose white supremacists to steer clear of the rallies where they might put their lives at risk and to instead scream into a sheet cake purchased from “a Jewish bakery, or an African-American bakery.”

Boston residents ignored that counsel, pouring into the streets on Saturday morning (the “free speech” protest began at 10:00 a.m.) and organizing online under the hashtag #fightsupremacy.

***

Reposted from ThinkProgress

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers

From the AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Name of Union: National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

Mission: To unite fraternally all city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service for their mutual benefit; to obtain and secure rights as employees of the USPS and to strive at all times to promote the safety and the welfare of every member; to strive for the constant improvement of the Postal Service; and for other purposes. NALC is a single-craft union and is the sole collective-bargaining agent for city letter carriers.

Current Leadership of Union: Fredric V. Rolando serves as president of NALC, after being sworn in as the union's 18th president in 2009. Rolando began his career as a letter carrier in 1978 in South Miami before moving to Sarasota in 1984. He was elected president of Branch 2148 in 1988 and served in that role until 1999. In the ensuing years, he worked in various roles for NALC before winning his election as a national officer in 2002, when he was elected director of city delivery. In 2006, he won election as executive vice president. Rolando was re-elected as NALC president in 2010, 2014 and 2018.

Brian Renfroe serves as executive vice president, Lew Drass as vice president, Nicole Rhine as secretary-treasurer, Paul Barner as assistant secretary-treasurer, Christopher Jackson as director of city delivery, Manuel L. Peralta Jr. as director of safety and health, Dan Toth as director of retired members, Stephanie Stewart as director of the Health Benefit Plan and James W. “Jim” Yates as director of life insurance.

Number of Members: 291,000 active and retired letter carriers.

Members Work As: City letter carriers.

Industries Represented: The United States Postal Service.

History: In 1794, the first letter carriers were appointed by Congress as the implementation of the new U.S. Constitution was being put into effect. By the time of the Civil War, free delivery of city mail was established and letter carriers successfully concluded a campaign for the eight-hour workday in 1888. The next year, letter carriers came together in Milwaukee and the National Association of Letter Carriers was formed.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work