Don’t get it twisted because you see a few Blacks doing well, such as: Oprah Winfrey, Steve Harvey, a few athletes, actors, and entertainers – they are also on the White man’s “Life Support Machine.” And when he pulls the plug, they too will need resuscitation.
Blacks must fund their own economic liberation. How long will Blacks depend on others for economic oxygen? We must learn economic CPR and resuscitate ourselves. Most Black cultural events slated for Blacks in Los Angeles, California, were cancelled this year due to a lack of funding/sponsorship from non-Blacks. If it were not for White folks’ money, the NAACP, the Urban League, and other groups would not be able to hold their events.
Time is of the essence, and we must act right now. Here is what we must do: We must make literacy and reversing our economic status top priorities. It’s important that we patronize those businesses who advertise in souvenir programs for Black events. This will encourage these businesses to continue to support our endeavors. Blacks must support venues where Blacks are exhibiting their product or services, and if you are not able to make a purchase on that day, collect business cards, and remember these businesses when you are in need of the product or services that they offer and be sure to tell family members and friends about these businesses.
Black America must create a new awareness and a new consciousness regarding supporting Black businesses by any means necessary. I am the founder of Black Writers On Tour. We showcase over one hundred authors and vendors at our annual conference. I observed that many of the exhibitors did not leave their booth to take a look at what other vendors were offering for sale. My thought is this: If you take a look at what other Black businesses are offering, you can make a mental note and patronize them at a later date.
What amazes me most is how Black business folk complain about how other Blacks do not support their businesses, and at the same time, they are not supporting other Black-owned businesses – what’s up with that? Even Blacks who own a food eatery do not think of another Black food eatery when they are considering going out to dine. We cannot continue business as usual if we are to change our dismal economic plight around the globe. It’s important for us to support Black vendors because many of these businesses are not in a traditional business setting due to the overhead of doing business in a “normal” manner. Many Black entrepreneurs came about as a result of corporate downsizing and layoffs, etc. and this is their only means of economic survival—and they need our support. Your support could save a marriage, as well as keep a mother/father and their children working and supporting themselves.
In the next two weeks, I will have placed a list of the authors, vendors who were exhibitors at the Black Writers On Tour conference, and the advertisers on our Web site http://www.blackwritersontour.com, and when you are shopping for a book to read, a product, or service, please consider these businesses.