CNN Withdraws Support of the National Association of Black Journalists For Reporting About CNN

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Posted by: Aprill Turner

MINNEAPOLIS (October 17, 2014) - Today at the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), Board of Directors Meeting, President Bob Butler announced that long-time supporter CNN has withdrawn support of NABJ for the 2015 Convention & Career Fair.

NABJ issued a statement last week, “NABJ Concerned About Atmosphere at CNN for African Americans“, in which NABJ expressed concern over the large number of African-American staff members leaving and being fired from the cable news network. Several African-Americans anchors have left the anchor desk or CNN altogether in the past few years.

Following the release CNN contacted NABJ President Bob Butler and informed him the association’s request for support was denied.

Since that time CNN announced a major layoff in which at least five senior managers were laid off. In the past year nearly a dozen African American managers have resigned, been laid off or were terminated.”

“I understand the company has a right to make personnel decisions,” said NABJ President Bob Butler. “There were not that many African American managers at CNN in the first place. These layoffs have hurt our members tremendously. I am severely disappointed that CNN has ended our partnership.”

NABJ was established as an advocacy group in 1975 in Washington, D.C., and is now the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation. It provides career development, educational support and other services to its members worldwide.

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Press Release Made Available By The National Association of Black Journalists.

#BringBackOURGirls! Boko Haram To Release Chibok Girls, Agree To Ceasefire

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***THIS JUST IN***

UPDATED 10/17/14, 3:43 P.M. EST: According to Nigerian government officials, in addition to the ceasefire, the nearly 300 schoolgirls — who were kidnapped as they took exams in Chibok — will be released, reports the BBC.
Nigerian presidential aide Hassan Tukur told BBC Focus on Africa that the agreement was sealed after a month of negotiations, mediated by Chad.
As part of the talks, a government delegation twice met representatives of the Islamist group.
Mr Tukur said Boko Haram had announced a unilateral ceasefire on Thursday and the government had responded.
“They’ve assured us they have the girls and they will release them,” he said.
“I am cautiously optimistic.”

While the Nigerian government hasn’t revealed what concessions they have made to secure the girls, they have said that they will be having a meeting next week to hash out the particulars of the release.
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ABUJA, Nigeria — Nigeria’s government and Islamic extremists from Boko Haram have agreed to an immediate cease-fire, officials said Friday, in a move that could end five years of insurgency that has killed thousands and left hundreds of thousands homeless in Africa’s most populous nation and its biggest oil producer.
The fate of more than 200 missing schoolgirls abducted by the insurgents six months ago remains unclear. Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Chris Olukolade said their release is still being negotiated.
Boko Haram negotiators “assured that the schoolgirls and all other people in their captivity are all alive and well,” Mike Omeri, the government spokesman on the insurgency, told a news conference.
The chief of defense staff, Air Marshal Alex Badeh, announced the truce and ordered his troops to immediately comply with the agreement.
“Already, the terrorists have announced a cease-fire in furtherance of their desire for peace. In this regard, the government of Nigeria has, in similar vein, declared a cease-fire,” Omeri said.
There was no immediate word from Boko Haram, which limits its announcements almost exclusively to videos of its leader Abubakar Shekau. Last year, when a government minister charged with negotiations announced an agreement, the group quickly published a video denying it. Leader Shekau said at that time that whoever the government negotiated with did not speak for him and that he would never talk to infidels.
It could take days for word to get to fighters of Boko Haram, which is broken into several groups. They include foreigners from neighboring countries Chad, Cameroon and Niger, where the insurgents also have camps.
There have been unconfirmed reports that at least some of the girls have been carried across borders, and some forced to marry their captors. A Boko Haram video in May showed two of the girls explaining why they had converted from Christianity to Islam.
Omeri confirmed there had been direct negotiations this week about the release of the abducted girls. Another official said the talks took place in neighboring Chad. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to talk to reporters.
Boko Haram had been demanding the release of detained extremists in exchange for the girls. President Goodluck Jonathan originally said he could not countenance a prisoner swap.
Boko Haram – the group’s nickname means “education is sinful” – attracted international condemnation with the April 15 kidnapping of 276 girls and young women writing final examinations at a boarding school in the remote northeastern town of Chibok.
Dozens escaped on their own in the first couple of days, but 219 remain missing. Their plight drew protests around the world with demands that the military and government get them free.
The United States, Britain, France and China sent experts to help find the girls, and U.S. drones flew over the area they are believed captive. But Badeh said months ago that they feared a military campaign to free the girls would lead to many of their deaths.
Dozens more schoolgirls and boys, young women and men have been kidnapped by the extremists in a 5-year-old insurgency.
Jonathan told the United Nations last month that the extremists have killed 13,000 civilians.
Hundreds of thousands have been driven from their homes, many of them farmers, causing a food emergency in the northeast of the country where the insurgency is centered.
But Boko Haram has struck elsewhere, with suicide and car bombing attacks in northern cities, in Abuja, the capital in the center of the country, and one failed car bomb in Lagos, the commercial capital in the southwest.
This week, nearly 100 soldiers have been on trial before a court-martial for mutiny and conspiracy to mutiny by refusing to fight the insurgents.
Demoralized troops have told The Associated Press that Boko Haram is better equipped and better armed, and that their officers steal some of their pay. They complain that they are abandoned to fight in the bush with no food or water.
In August, Boko Haram began seizing and holding territory where it declared a caliphate, apparently copying the Islamic State group fighting in Iraq and Syria.
But the tide appears to have turned in recent weeks, with the military wrestling some towns from the extremists and reporting to have killed hundreds of Boko Haram fighters.
French President Francois Hollande on Friday welcomed the announcement of an accord on the Nigerian schoolgirls as “good news.” He said during a press conference in Paris that “we have information that allows us to think that (the release of the girls) could happen in the coming hours and days”. He didn’t give details.

By Abena Agyeman-Fisher

Click Here For More Information….

Kevin Costner Reveals Hollywood Wouldn’t Finance Racially Charged “Black or White”

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“I said it 50 times that we should make this movie and at the end of the day, I had to pay for it…I just thought it was an interesting movie … I can’t speak for why [no one would finance it]. I know a lot of people want to make these big, giant movies and I understand … But I thought this movie is just as valid as those movies. So that’s why I made it” – Kevin Costner during the National Association of Black Journalists Convention Q&A.

Costner signed on to produce the racially-charged independent drama under his Treehouse banner. Once he fully invested himself in the project he was on the hunt for his female lead. “We have some very significant actresses out there that probably could play this role, but Octavia became our first choice and the choice of our director,” Costner explained.

The drama centers on  the true story of a grieving widower and attorney, Elliot Anderson (Costner), who’s raising his biracial granddaughter Eloise with his wife. Costner’s wife is tragically killed in a car accident, and the widower struggles to retain custody over the little girl, with her African-American grandmother Rowena (Spencer), who believes the child is black and should be raised by the black side of her family . Check out the trailer below.

The cast is rounded out by Gillian Jacobs, Jennifer Ehle, and Anthony Mackie. Relativity is wrapping a deal to acquire U.S. rights to Black Or White, and the film should be released in time to qualify for the Oscars. It is speculated that Relativity will release the film through its newly formed multicultural division.

What are your thoughts on the difficulties faced by those attempting to tell stories about race issues in America?

We welcome dialogue here at Lost Below The Fold.

Donate your input.

By LAUREN CROOM  

 

9 No’s To Happy: 9 Lessons about Success We Learned From Pharrell Williams

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Tuesday June, 3rd 2014 is a day I’ll never forget. Since I’ve always preferred to dance in the driver’s seat on the way to work, I had strategically set the station to Power 106 where I was sure to find the songs that would take me to this happy place. Speaking of happy,” Big Boy of popular radio show, “Big Boy in the Morning” was interviewing 7 x Grammy award winning, executive producer, singer, songwriter, Pharrell Williams about the massive success surrounding his new song. “Happy,” written for the movie Despicable Me 2, would go on to reach an estimated 3 Billion, peak number 1 in the U.S., United Kingdom, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand and 19 other countries. While listening to all of his successes sounded great, I slowly found myself mentally exiting this interview out of frustration. How many times do we hear about so called ultra-successful people who are highlighted for their successes while their journeys to success are often shrouded in mystery? Just as my frustration was reaching its peak and my hand was quickly making its way to the seek button, something amazing happened. Big Boy asked Pharrell, “Did it feel hard or impossible?” As he began to share, I felt like it was one of those rare moments where I thought my radio had literally turned itself into the success coach I’ve always wanted and my car had transformed into a DRIVE-TIME-UNIVERSITY. Written below are the clear cut, not at all cryptic, 9 lessons about success I learned from 15 minutes of listening to Pharrell Williams.

1. Successful people aren’t disillusioned about what it takes to be successful

One of the first questions that Big Boy asked was, “did it feel hard or impossible?” I really appreciated Pharrell’s simple answer, “Yeah it did.” He neither downplayed the effort he’d given or acted surprised by the amount of work needed to produce this type of quality. Further into the interview he reveals that there were 9 other songs that were supposed to be “Happy” before the final song was accepted. I immediately thought to myself, “Wow, I would’ve probably quit after the second no and I don’t even have one iota of the success He has.” As common sense as hard work sounds, how many times do we meet people who think that just because they tried something once they ought to be good at it or just because they applied to a few jobs someone should have called them back? How many times are we ready to quit after giving something 100 % only one time? One could probably present some amazing reasons why Pharrell should’ve quit; top of his field, multi-millionaire who never has to work another day again, world renowned, has already proved he can make amazing hits, yet he still chose to journey through the valley to get to the mountaintop. What should that say to us? Hard work goes hand in hand with success.

2. Success has more valleys than mountains…the mountains just look bigger

“So I got to my lowest point, 9 times I bummed out” said Pharrell. What a powerful statement! Too often we can focus so much on someone’s successes and totally forget that it is only a small part of their story. I would argue, the bigger the mountain of success, the more failure that particular person has gone through. Each time we fail or enter a valley, there is a valuable lesson we can take and apply towards our future endeavor. As Pharrell failed the first 9 times, he finally realized that the answer to creating “Happy,” was using the word itself. Without failing first, he would have never made it to that place. Most people think success is a straight line, but more often than not, it is a squiggly line full of sharp turns and dips. In the 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John C. Maxwell discusses the idea of events vs. processes which I will compare to successes vs. journeys. The idea is, we love events or successes because they are exciting, emotionally charged, feel good and energetic. Yet, events won’t take us to where we really desire to be. Once the excitement dissipates and the bright lights fade, the process or the journey is really the “stuff” of successful events.

Click Here To Read More….

Michael is a poet, speaker, blogger and human who who lives in Los Angeles and enjoys teaching people how to use their God given voices. He is also a dear friend and I’m excited that he has finally chosen to share his wisdom and imagination with the world.

The Balanced Feather pt. 1

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By LAUREN CROOM  

Through great focus, practice, and endurance we are able to will our minds (and thus our bodies) to the point of incredible action… I meditate on the notion of “the balanced feather” today… Watch this short piece to the end and you will see evidence that even the smallest most gentle of breezes or thoughts can have a great and gathering impact on your life…

Take care to usher in only that which you want to stay, and re-evaluate each instance in which you invite negativity (in any form) into your space… Ask yourself: “Why did I chose to see things through this tinted lens as opposed to a transparent one”? If you are honest with yourself, the answers may surprise you.


BALANCE, a short film written and directed by Tobias Hutzler.
Produced by Prime Pictures in association with Bunker Media.
© 2013 featured at TIME Magazine, time.com

Brother Speak: Hurt, Anger, and Hope in Post-Hashtag Ferguson

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A touching portrait of men from the Ferguson Missouri community that played back drop to the slaying of Michael Brown.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/posttv/c/embed/228865dc-28af-11e4-8b10-7db129976abb

Arian Foster Tells The Truth About Anheuser-Busch And Everyone Else

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Arian Foster of the Houston Texans never has a problem with speaking his mind. What are your thoughts on his correlation between domestic violence and alcohol? Do you think he’ll catch flack for saying what we are all thinking?

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