Black Money Equals Black Power!
Updated: Jun 4
Illustration: Sara Grillo/Axios
"Racism is a competitive industry between groups of people for ownership and resources."
--Dr. Claud Anderson
A house divided against itself cannot stand.
Divisive, self-serving interests within the Black community undermine its ability to build wealth and establish economic security so prevalent in other cultures.
The "I got mine, get yours" mentality has roots in masters pitting slaves against each other and has been fostered by the continual psychologically debilitating, self-fulfilling labeling of Blacks.
Although proximity factors prominently into how crime is committed, why are only Black offenses against each other labeled as such?
Blacks' acceptance of ad arguments for limiting characterizations plays a cruel role in sustaining Blacks' socioeconomic imbalance. We need reminding of who we are to build from that space instead of perpetuating the resulting distrust and crabs in a bucket mindset that keeps us walking through a revolving door of lack.
As it relates to building wealth, racism is undoubtedly a dominant factor; however, Blacks can minimize its dominance by embracing James Baldwin's explanation that, "The world is not white; it was never white, cannot be white. White is a metaphor for power and is simply a way of describing Chase Manhattan Bank."
Being Africans on this American soil means understanding the majority's rules to overcome them. Take reparations, for example. The U.S. owes Blacks big time. It has a track record for providing financial restitution to every group except Blacks, although its most significant harm and intentional destruction was done to Blacks.
With the Land Act of 1785, remuneration extended to the Japanese post World War II. More recently, white-identifying Hispanics and Asians benefitting through approval of homeownership loans, business grants and gentrification, it is increasingly apparent that America is selective about which groups it wants to see prosper.
While we know not to hold our breath waiting, thoughts held in mind produce after their kind, so we should expect to receive what we are owed as citizens of this land. But while we wait, let us establish a for us by us (FUBU), a multifaceted approach to building Black wealth.
Let us shift focus from wild obsessions with ego, fashion trends, cars and other depreciable baubles; and concentrate on achieving the diasporic prosperity we are innately capable of manifesting.
With the resources available to 21st Century Black folk, we can build sustainable infrastructures and create an atmosphere of collective prosperity by expanding on the staunch support of Black-owned businesses currently catching fire. We can establish incubators for nurturing new companies to ensure a pipeline of high-quality ventures in Black communities to increase the dollar's circulation from the mere six hours it currently lasts to the 17 to 30 days it remains in white, Jewish and Asian communities.
We can develop present-day Black Wall Street and Rosewood communities!
The time is right. The synergy is vital. We know what we are working with, and we know where we live.
Our ancestors established thriving Black spaces under far worse circumstances. We can replicate their brilliant network of Black-owned enterprises by following their FUBU blueprints and remembering together we stand, divided we fall.