An alternative to Black Friday

There is spending power in the black community but are we spending our money wisely? Are we using it to build our own or are we giving it all away to unnecessary and distracting sales like Black Friday?

The UK’s no.1 black newspaper The Voice, recently reported that black consumers are worth £300 billion. The sub heading of this article even said: “campaigners say new study provides an opportunity for ethnic minorities to be taken seriously by advertisers.”

Never mind the advertisers taking black spending seriously, WE should be taking our spending power seriously, because this is where we are fundamentally going wrong. This is exactly what is stopping us from economically boycotting the foolishness that is ‘Black Friday’.

Black people struggle to hold solid financial positions. We struggle to buy black or support our own. We struggle to leave a legacy behind for the next generation, yet we have a spending power of £300 billion… Yes, we are living in society run by a system that is built to hinder our economic progress – black men will find it hardest to secure a job, and black women are seven times more likely to be made redundant[1] compared to their white counterparts. But, when we can manage to overcome the barrier of racial bias and discrimination, we can set the path to financial stability.

If we have a spending power of £300 billion then we have the power to boycott Black Friday and European designer products. We should collectively be using this power to buy from black owned businesses and Afro-Caribbean designers.

Imagine what progress could be made if we all changed our mind-set and made a conscious effort to buy and invest in our people? We would be helping each other to put food on the table, to pay bills or to clothe our children. These are just some of the necessities of life our brothers and sisters are struggling to meet.

For a successful and continuous boycott we need to change our perspective. When we change that, we change the narrative. Parents encouraging their children to start a business, could plant the economic seeds that our community is lacking. Having more Black business teachers could inspire black boys and girls to become entrepreneurs, or setting up business workshops or seminars outside of school.

Networking events within the black community have increased, but we need more, especially for the younger generations. With our huge spending power, we have no excuse not to be supporting a brothers and sisters who set up crowdfunding projects. Stop wasting money on pointless superficial materialist things. Too many of our young are dressed head to toe in the latest Nike or Adidas. Fine if they want to wear that, but we could be launching our own brands, or buying less Nike and Adidas, and more of the ‘black and conscious’, or African print inspired clothing which actually carries meaning!

A black owned business is something powerful. It is us taking a stance against a system which deliberately disadvantages us.  In many parts of Africa, it is said that: “It takes a village to raise a child.”

Well, let us create that village – an economic collective so we can support ourselves by ourselves. We grow fruit and veg to maintain good health, so why not grow black businesses to maintain black wealth and power to our people.

Books for business:

  • PowerNomics, by Dr Claud Anderson 
  • Black Labour White Wealth, by Dr Claud Anderson
  • Business Innovation in the 21st century, by Praveen Gupta

Websites: 

[1] Statistic on black women, from April Ashlee speaking at a Black Lives Matter/socialist talk, Wednesday 16th November, 2016.

 

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