These are the questions we ask after something so devastating. These continual murders by cop scenarios and the disregard by white folks is common, but what can we truly do outside of protesting, blackouts, and voting.
Black Businesses and Black Banking
This is the standard go-to seen after these incidents, but is it sustaining? I believe we can support black businesses to grow the network. Unfortunately, those businesses are not in all-black communities. How do we expand those online and bridge that to homes of people that support fairness, equity, and equality? That is the push we need to put a dent into the organizations that do not support diversity and equity.
Black banking is another component, but how do we leverage this for those that do not have savings accounts to take advantage of the 1.1% -1.89% interest rate or the credit good enough to build finances? This is still an option to grow our banks and use that financial power to make a change. What if we take the efforts from the past and move money not only to black businesses and banking but to organizations that support diversity?
As people, we have purchasing power. We spend money on entertainment that includes HBO, Hulu, Showtime, Netflix, etc. We spend tons on sporting events, food, clothing, electronics, and more. What if we use that purchasing power to shift the funds we spend on organizations that support all people? Lists have been created to show corporations and organizations that support the current person in office and alternatives to those corporations. We can use those to our advantage and start a movement to hurt organizations/corporations in the pocket to support change. This has to be done by all people and not just blacks.
What Are We Willing to Give Up?
Are we willing to give up sports, Netflix, Starbucks, etc., if that means putting a dent into the pockets of corporations that don’t assist in supporting people of color? That is not saying the companies named do not do so, but the point is whether we can give up these things for what’s right. Since Kaepernick kneeled some time ago, I have yet to go to another NFL game or pay for anything NFL related. It was hard initially, but I stand by that decision. I currently only wear shoes that have supported us as people.
Little Caesars, Taco Bell, Wendy’s, and Pizza Hut all stand with Trash (Trump), and I have no issue not partaking in these foods. However, are we as a collective willing to stick by the conviction of no purchase and avoid Walmart and Amazon? While black banking and businesses is a great route, the money spent on technology, entertainment, food, clothing, and more would make a significant splash. Are we willing to give up Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc., if they allow for the incendiary comments and support only the bottom dollar? I gave up Facebook, LinkedIn, and more to not support that machine, but we could have our own.
Even in black cities, there are small black businesses with qualified people that go ignored as our people continue to seek out white counterparts. Building the infrastructure of us as a people will benefit us in the long run, but are we willing to invest in building the infrastructure and sticking to it long term? Again, protests and blackouts have their place, but how do we sustain the purpose long term? Financially, our purchasing power is incredibly strong. How do we leverage that to make a change?