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Founder Files $1B Lawsuit for Arrest and Brutality; Whole Foods HQ Demonstration During AfroTech

The Founder of the #1 Black Crypto, MPAC Crypto was falsely arrested and battered for allegedly shoplifting. Now he's leading a boycott against Whole Foods AND Prudential and suing Whole Foods for $1Billion in damages. MPAC Crypto is calling all opposing Anti-Black racism to its November 13, 2022 demonstration at Whole Foods HQ in Austin, Tx. Newark, NJ native Michael "President" Anderson protests at a Whole Foods supermarket in Newark, New Jersey on Oct. 5. (Photo/video courtesy of Brick City Strength and #BlackDadsMatter)

NEWARK, NJ — On October 5, 2020, Michael Anderson laid in a doorway at Newark Whole Foods, propping the sliding glass doors open with his body and blocking the entrance. Wrapped in a U.S. flag and wearing a face mask, sweatpants and sneakers, he clutched a posterboard sign reading "I Am A Man" to his chest like a shield. Bail money had been gathered in advance. The camera was rolling. It was time. "They accused me of stealing and threatened to beat me–" Anderson began to yell, trying to attract attention from nearby shoppers and passerby. But as soon as the words left his mouth, an armed security guard clad in black walked to his side. The guard grabbed at the corner of Anderson's sign and tried to lift it away. His reaction was swift: "Do not touch my sign!" "Move!" the guard retorted, pointing his finger and making another reach for the sign. "Do not touch me!" Anderson repeated loudly. "Do not touch my sign! I'm engaging in public civil disobedience!" As customers began gathering to see what the commotion was about, the guard continued to grab at the sign, ripping small pieces away each time until Anderson finally displayed a flash of anger, yelling "Get the f*** off of me!" Stymied, the guard moved away. And for eight more minutes, the stage would be all Anderson'. ACCUSED OF SHOPLIFTING According to Anderson, he walked into Whole Foods on the evening of Oct. 3, clad in sweat pants and a hoodie and carrying a bottle of loc oil that he bought at another store for $5.99. As he left the supermarket, an armed security officer "deliberately collided" with him, pushing him backwards and threatening him with a gun. As two other Whole Foods employees approached him, including a manager, Anderson tried to leave the store. After several minutes of trying to learn why he was being stopped, Anderson was finally told that he was in possession of a "stolen item." It's a hard hit to a person's reputation and honor when they're accused of shoplifting in their own neighborhood, especially when that person is a former investment banker and Harvard University graduate. Not to mention, the stinging insult Anderson experienced as a social justice activist who co founded a cryptocurrency and financial technology platform with the largest ever capital commitment for a Black led and focusing firm. Anderson produced a receipt to back up his explanation – a safeguard that had become a part of his daily routine – and handed it to the staff members. Meanwhile, the security officer kept his hand near his gun, he said. It wasn't just embarrassing, Anderson said. It was a "violation of his humanity." Eventually, Anderson was allowed to leave. But the damage had already been done, "I couldn't believe it," Anderson recalled. "I really don't like people with guns physically touching or threatening me … I was upset, enraged and furious." A spokesperson for Whole Foods said the security guard involved in the incident works for a third-party company that it contracts with at the Newark location. Whole Foods confirmed that Anderson only interacted with two Whole Foods Market team members during the situation, and both approached him after he had been stopped by third-party security. "Our store leadership approached Mr. Anderson to help resolve the situation," a spokesperson said. "Their intentions were never to embarrass or draw attention to the customer." "Mr. Anderson's experience at our store was unacceptable," the spokesperson added. "The actions of the third-party security officer who initiated this interaction were in violation of Whole Foods Market protocol and we are investigating with their employer. We extend our sincere apologies to Mr. Anderson." 'I AM A MAN' Anderson said that he tried to reach out to Whole Foods after the incident, but didn't get a reply. So two days later on Oct. 5, 2020, he returned to the supermarket. This time, he went prepared. After refusing to move for an armed security guard, Anderson laid in the doorway for eight minutes and 46 seconds, the same amount of time a police officer kneeled on the neck of George Floyd before his death in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Invoking the name of Floyd wasn't done lightly in a city that saw a massive, 12,000-person protestin the wake of his death. But as Anderson pointed out during his "Die-In" protest at Whole Foods, Floyd was killed after leaving a local grocery store and being accused of using a counterfeit bill, a situation not all that different from his own. "That's how they tried to do me Saturday night, saying that I was stealing something that's mine!" Anderson hollered. "What if I didn't have the emotional intelligence to respond how I did?" Anderson asked, refusing to budge from between the doors. "I come here every day. I am a man, and you will treat me like a man!" Some customers took note – and didn't like it one bit. "I won't be shopping here," a passerby can be heard saying off-camera in Anderson's video of the event, which gained more than 53,000 views on Instagram in the first day. Anderson said he didn't face any charges or jail time after the protest. Whole Foods did admit wrongdoing, but Anderson rejects apologies without compensation and corrective action. "I do not find this apology sincere or wholly accurate. An entire team of Whole Foods staff – including senior leadership – participated in the indecent act of harassment and assault. The security guard that the company blames merely responded to the directives of leadership and instructions from another Whole Foods employee. In fact, the person who self-identified as the GM was verbally abusive and continued to berate me after I was physically assaulted. If Whole Foods Market protocol is to racially profile and then blame outsourced staff, the investors behind this project need to be held accountable for how their 'social impact' capital is deteriorating the quality of life for Newark's Indigenous population of color. Obviously, the store itself is unwilling to be responsible for subjecting good people to second-class treatment and the fact that I could have gotten shot for resisting and lost my life for nothing is traumatizing." Anderson is currently engaged in a Federal lawsuit in court for the $1B he has suffered tremendous reputational harm. Former US Senate candidate and social justice advocate, Jamar Montgomery estimated the economic impact of this incident and subsequent protests at over $1Billion. INVESTING IN NEWARK Anderson has since launched a boycott against not only Whole Foods, but Prudential Financial, the Newark-based, Fortune 500 investment company that owns part of the building where the supermarket is located. Prudential and the other owners of the building don't manage the day-to-day operations of Whole Foods, including issues related to its security or personnel. But Anderson says that the boycott is much bigger than a simple shoplifting accusation. It's about economic justice. "Whole Foods and Prudential must be held accountable for how their investments may employ Black Americans in marginal positions, but contribute to an economic regime in which white corporations reap massive rewards, while indigenous Black communities experience a wealth transfer that excludes their participation at the highest levels," Anderson argued. "Our humanity is not being represented congruently with white corporate profits," he added. "Blacks have no stake in 'the New Newark.'" Anderson isn't alone in his concerns about a lack of money flowing into New Jersey's Black communities. In June, a Black-owned investment firm in Newark claimed racial bias in a lawsuit against the state of New Jersey, alleging that officials said the state's pension was averse to hiring money-management firms owned by minorities. "Systemic discrimination and racism continue to permeate America's financial services industry," Blueprint Capital Advisors stated in the civil complaint. "Although such racial resentment, suspicion, and destruction are most horribly illustrated by the burning of 'Black Wall Street' 100 years ago, many of the white Americans who dominate the worlds of banking and investment today still, consciously and unconsciously, act to prevent Black Americans from achieving success on the same basis, terms, and level as their white colleagues." Prudential's executive board at the time of the incident is entirely white. Anderson alleged that Prudential "manages a trillion dollars in assets," yet invests "zero percent" of it in Black businesses, developers and asset managers. Prudential did fund: Contribute $2 million to help transform Military Park which holds a controversial statue built by a KKK membe Channel $5.25 million into AeroFarms, an indoor farm in Newark and White owned company that has experienced complaints of racism and is larger than any other Black-Newark company. NEWARK'S RACIAL WEALTH GAP In Essex County, the stark paradox of wealth and poverty is hard to ignore. The county has the most homeless residents in the entire state, the overwhelming bulk of whom live in Newark and are Afro-Indigenous. But just a 20-minute drive away in the Millburn/Short Hills area, two of the "400 richest people in America" reside in a neighborhood filled with huge mansions. New Jersey’s Black entrepreneurs earn an estimated $25,000 annually in revenue, compared to nearly $600,000 for white-owned businesses, according to the African-American Chamber of Commerce. In Newark, Black households account for nearly half of the 282,000 estimated residents of the city. According to a study released in October 2019 – which Prudential helped to pay for –both Blacks and Latinos are on average two times as likely to live in poverty compared to white households, and three times as likely to be liquid asset poor. "This means they lack the savings necessary to live above the poverty level for just three months if they lose a job, face a medical crisis or suffer an income disruption or emergency," the study says. Whole Foods Newark is located in the Hahne & Company Building. The 400,000 square-foot building at 609 Broad Street stood vacant after shutting its doors nearly three decades ago. But the abandoned property – which once stood as a glittering downtown department store – regained much of its former glory after a $174 million facelift was finished in 2017. In addition to 160 new apartments, 64 of which are set aside for low-income families, the Hahne building is now home to a range of restaurants and retail stores. The renovation was financed through a partnership of public, nonprofit and private groups, including sizable commitments from the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency and New Jersey Economic Development Authority. Private equity was provided by Prudential Financial, L+M Development Partners and Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group. Anderson has called for a racial equity audit of all those groups, as ESG related investments often enrich White New York firms under the guise of “urban investment” MPAC’s iMPACt Newark officials have been actively recruiting investors to put money into other social justice programs in the city. The same week of Anderson’s protest, a star-studded cast of supporters, including Anderson and Newark’s Mayor Ras Baraka announced the launch of the Newark 40 Acres and a Mule Fund, a program that aims to put millions of dollars of capital directly into the hands of the city's Black and Latinx business owners. Now wearing his Hip-Hop MC hat, President produced a Hip-Hop video for the fund in collaboration with his Album/Movement Billions In My 30s. “On Me”, features Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, another Multi-Platinum Poet/Rapper turned Politician, announcing the first of its kind fund. This video also features the Whole Foods protests and at the end Anderson speaks at the end about a similar white male founder named Steven Schwarzman was seeded $100M from Prudential to create $600B AUM Blackstone on his first lunch trip to Newark. It’s unprecedented to see two graduates of premier universities, Harvard and Howard University, interweave careers as lyricists, activists, and politicians to launch significant investment vehicles. Anderson was the first Newark resident to demand that $100M be invested in Black businesses- a demand he made during a May 21,2019 community demonstration for programmatic equity after an exclusive Forbes event at MPAC Park. Mayor Baraka responded by launching a $100M Black VC program has already seeing support from celebrities such as Shaquille O'Neal and the Rev. Al Sharpton. Anderson also helped convince Senator Cory Booker’s office to support the opening of New Jersey’s first Minority Business Center. The Minority Business Center of NJ brings an estimated $100M annually for Minority businesses. He is pictured next to The Enterprise Center’s Della Clark at the NJ Minority Business Center’sOpening, and was credited in writing a letter of support to the Federal Government in partnership with FDU’s Business School Executive Director, Dr. Dale Caldwell that helped bring the federal support for Black and Minority businesses to Jersey. MPAC Crypto plans to be at AfroTech this month leading a demonstration at Whole Foods Headquarters in Austin, TX. All who participate in the demonstration will be awarded MPAC Crypto. Anderson has pledged 5% of the lawsuit proceeds to the development of MPAC Crypto. The Founder of the #1 Black Crypto, MPAC Crypto was falsely arrested and battered for allegedly shoplifting. Now he's leading a boycott against Whole Foods AND Prudential and suing Whole Foods for $1Billion in damages. MPAC Crypto is calling all opposing Anti-Black racism to its November 13, 2022 demonstration at Whole Foods HQ Newark, NJ native Michael "President" Anderson protests at a Whole Foods supermarket in Newark, New Jersey on Oct. 5. (Photo/video courtesy of Brick City Strength and #BlackDadsMatter) NEWARK, NJ — On October 5, 2020, Michael Anderson laid in a doorway at Newark Whole Foods, propping the sliding glass doors open with his body and blocking the entrance. Wrapped in a U.S. flag and wearing a face mask, sweatpants and sneakers, he clutched a posterboard sign reading "I Am A Man" to his chest like a shield. Bail money had been gathered in advance. The camera was rolling. It was time. "They accused me of stealing and threatened to beat me–" Anderson began to yell, trying to attract attention from nearby shoppers and passerby. But as soon as the words left his mouth, an armed security guard clad in black walked to his side. The guard grabbed at the corner of Anderson's sign and tried to lift it away. His reaction was swift: "Do not touch my sign!" "Move!" the guard retorted, pointing his finger and making another reach for the sign. "Do not touch me!" Anderson repeated loudly. "Do not touch my sign! I'm engaging in public civil disobedience!" As customers began gathering to see what the commotion was about, the guard continued to grab at the sign, ripping small pieces away each time until Anderson finally displayed a flash of anger, yelling "Get the f*** off of me!" Stymied, the guard moved away. And for eight more minutes, the stage would be all Anderson'. ACCUSED OF SHOPLIFTING According to Anderson, he walked into Whole Foods on the evening of Oct. 3, clad in sweat pants and a hoodie and carrying a bottle of loc oil that he bought at another store for $5.99. As he left the supermarket, an armed security officer "deliberately collided" with him, pushing him backwards and threatening him with a gun. As two other Whole Foods employees approached him, including a manager, Anderson tried to leave the store. After several minutes of trying to learn why he was being stopped, Anderson was finally told that he was in possession of a "stolen item." It's a hard hit to a person's reputation and honor when they're accused of shoplifting in their own neighborhood, especially when that person is a former investment banker and Harvard University graduate. Not to mention, the stinging insult Anderson experienced as a social justice activist who co founded a cryptocurrency and financial technology platform with the largest ever capital commitment for a Black led and focusing firm. Anderson produced a receipt to back up his explanation – a safeguard that had become a part of his daily routine – and handed it to the staff members. Meanwhile, the security officer kept his hand near his gun, he said. It wasn't just embarrassing, Anderson said. It was a "violation of his humanity." Eventually, Anderson was allowed to leave. But the damage had already been done, "I couldn't believe it," Anderson recalled. "I really don't like people with guns physically touching or threatening me … I was upset, enraged and furious." A spokesperson for Whole Foods said the security guard involved in the incident works for a third-party company that it contracts with at the Newark location. Whole Foods confirmed that Anderson only interacted with two Whole Foods Market team members during the situation, and both approached him after he had been stopped by third-party security. "Our store leadership approached Mr. Anderson to help resolve the situation," a spokesperson said. "Their intentions were never to embarrass or draw attention to the customer." "Mr. Anderson's experience at our store was unacceptable," the spokesperson added. "The actions of the third-party security officer who initiated this interaction were in violation of Whole Foods Market protocol and we are investigating with their employer. We extend our sincere apologies to Mr. Anderson." 'I AM A MAN' Anderson said that he tried to reach out to Whole Foods after the incident, but didn't get a reply. So two days later on Oct. 5, 2020, he returned to the supermarket. This time, he went prepared. After refusing to move for an armed security guard, Anderson laid in the doorway for eight minutes and 46 seconds, the same amount of time a police officer kneeled on the neck of George Floyd before his death in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Invoking the name of Floyd wasn't done lightly in a city that saw a massive, 12,000-person protestin the wake of his death. But as Anderson pointed out during his "Die-In" protest at Whole Foods, Floyd was killed after leaving a local grocery store and being accused of using a counterfeit bill, a situation not all that different from his own. "That's how they tried to do me Saturday night, saying that I was stealing something that's mine!" Anderson hollered. "What if I didn't have the emotional intelligence to respond how I did?" Anderson asked, refusing to budge from between the doors. "I come here every day. I am a man, and you will treat me like a man!" Some customers took note – and didn't like it one bit. "I won't be shopping here," a passerby can be heard saying off-camera in Anderson's video of the event, which gained more than 53,000 views on Instagram in the first day. Anderson said he didn't face any charges or jail time after the protest. Whole Foods did admit wrongdoing, but Anderson rejects apologies without compensation and corrective action. "I do not find this apology sincere or wholly accurate. An entire team of Whole Foods staff – including senior leadership – participated in the indecent act of harassment and assault. The security guard that the company blames merely responded to the directives of leadership and instructions from another Whole Foods employee. In fact, the person who self-identified as the GM was verbally abusive and continued to berate me after I was physically assaulted. If Whole Foods Market protocol is to racially profile and then blame outsourced staff, the investors behind this project need to be held accountable for how their 'social impact' capital is deteriorating the quality of life for Newark's Indigenous population of color. Obviously, the store itself is unwilling to be responsible for subjecting good people to second-class treatment and the fact that I could have gotten shot for resisting and lost my life for nothing is traumatizing." Anderson is currently engaged in a Federal lawsuit in court for the $1B he has suffered tremendous reputational harm. Former US Senate candidate and social justice advocate, Jamar Montgomery estimated the economic impact of this incident and subsequent protests at over $1Billion. INVESTING IN NEWARK Anderson has since launched a boycott against not only Whole Foods, but Prudential Financial, the Newark-based, Fortune 500 investment company that owns part of the building where the supermarket is located. Prudential and the other owners of the building don't manage the day-to-day operations of Whole Foods, including issues related to its security or personnel. But Anderson says that the boycott is much bigger than a simple shoplifting accusation. It's about economic justice. "Whole Foods and Prudential must be held accountable for how their investments may employ Black Americans in marginal positions, but contribute to an economic regime in which white corporations reap massive rewards, while indigenous Black communities experience a wealth transfer that excludes their participation at the highest levels," Anderson argued. "Our humanity is not being represented congruently with white corporate profits," he added. "Blacks have no stake in 'the New Newark.'" Anderson isn't alone in his concerns about a lack of money flowing into New Jersey's Black communities. In June, a Black-owned investment firm in Newark claimed racial bias in a lawsuit against the state of New Jersey, alleging that officials said the state's pension was averse to hiring money-management firms owned by minorities. "Systemic discrimination and racism continue to permeate America's financial services industry," Blueprint Capital Advisors stated in the civil complaint. "Although such racial resentment, suspicion, and destruction are most horribly illustrated by the burning of 'Black Wall Street' 100 years ago, many of the white Americans who dominate the worlds of banking and investment today still, consciously and unconsciously, act to prevent Black Americans from achieving success on the same basis, terms, and level as their white colleagues." Prudential's executive board at the time of the incident is entirely white. Anderson alleged that Prudential "manages a trillion dollars in assets," yet invests "zero percent" of it in Black businesses, developers and asset managers. Prudential did fund: Contribute $2 million to help transform Military Park which holds a controversial statue built by a KKK membe Channel $5.25 million into AeroFarms, an indoor farm in Newark and White owned company that has experienced complaints of racism and is larger than any other Black-Newark company. NEWARK'S RACIAL WEALTH GAP In Essex County, the stark paradox of wealth and poverty is hard to ignore. The county has the most homeless residents in the entire state, the overwhelming bulk of whom live in Newark and are Afro-Indigenous. But just a 20-minute drive away in the Millburn/Short Hills area, two of the "400 richest people in America" reside in a neighborhood filled with huge mansions. New Jersey’s Black entrepreneurs earn an estimated $25,000 annually in revenue, compared to nearly $600,000 for white-owned businesses, according to the African-American Chamber of Commerce. In Newark, Black households account for nearly half of the 282,000 estimated residents of the city. According to a study released in October 2019 – which Prudential helped to pay for –both Blacks and Latinos are on average two times as likely to live in poverty compared to white households, and three times as likely to be liquid asset poor. "This means they lack the savings necessary to live above the poverty level for just three months if they lose a job, face a medical crisis or suffer an income disruption or emergency," the study says. Whole Foods Newark is located in the Hahne & Company Building. The 400,000 square-foot building at 609 Broad Street stood vacant after shutting its doors nearly three decades ago. But the abandoned property – which once stood as a glittering downtown department store – regained much of its former glory after a $174 million facelift was finished in 2017. In addition to 160 new apartments, 64 of which are set aside for low-income families, the Hahne building is now home to a range of restaurants and retail stores. The renovation was financed through a partnership of public, nonprofit and private groups, including sizable commitments from the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency and New Jersey Economic Development Authority. Private equity was provided by Prudential Financial, L+M Development Partners and Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group. Anderson has called for a racial equity audit of all those groups, as ESG related investments often enrich White New York firms under the guise of “urban investment” MPAC’s iMPACt Newark officials have been actively recruiting investors to put money into other social justice programs in the city. The same week of Anderson’s protest, a star-studded cast of supporters, including Anderson and Newark’s Mayor Ras Baraka announced the launch of the Newark 40 Acres and a Mule Fund, a program that aims to put millions of dollars of capital directly into the hands of the city's Black and Latinx business owners. Now wearing his Hip-Hop MC hat, President produced a Hip-Hop video for the fund in collaboration with his Album/Movement Billions In My 30s. “On Me”, features Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, another Multi-Platinum Poet/Rapper turned Politician, announcing the first of its kind fund. This video also features the Whole Foods protests and at the end Anderson speaks at the end about a similar white male founder named Steven Schwarzman was seeded $100M from Prudential to create $600B AUM Blackstone on his first lunch trip to Newark. It’s unprecedented to see two graduates of premier universities, Harvard and Howard University, interweave careers as lyricists, activists, and politicians to launch significant investment vehicles. Anderson was the first Newark resident to demand that $100M be invested in Black businesses- a demand he made during a May 21,2019 community demonstration for programmatic equity after an exclusive Forbes event at MPAC Park. Mayor Baraka responded by launching a $100M Black VC program has already seeing support from celebrities such as Shaquille O'Neal and the Rev. Al Sharpton. Anderson also helped convince Senator Cory Booker’s office to support the opening of New Jersey’s first Minority Business Center. The Minority Business Center of NJ brings an estimated $100M annually for Minority businesses. He is pictured next to The Enterprise Center’s Della Clark at the NJ Minority Business Center’sOpening, and was credited in writing a letter of support to the Federal Government in partnership with FDU’s Business School Executive Director, Dr. Dale Caldwell that helped bring the federal support for Black and Minority businesses to Jersey. MPAC Crypto plans to be at AfroTech this month leading a demonstration at Whole Foods Headquarters in Austin, TX. All who participate in the demonstration will be awarded MPAC Crypto. Anderson has pledged 5% of the lawsuit proceeds to the development of MPAC Crypto.

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