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  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention The Smith Family: Maybe a Formula for Generational Wealth : Black Economic Development --

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    Monica Thompson

    While my colleagues and I are certainly “all in” for planning for and creating intergenerational wealth in African-American families, couldn’t you choose a less shallow example than Will, Jada, and Willow? When people make big money in the entertainment business, it’s easy to pass along wealth and “develop the talent” of their children. (More likely, someone wanting to impress mom and dad were trying to “develop the talent” in Willow.)

    The important point is that in developing intergenerational wealth, African-American families need to try to also develop the spirit of philanthropy and community involvement that will lift other African-Americans not privileged to enjoy wealth into a solid middle-class framework where at least some financial toehold can be passed on to the next generation.

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    There are lots of example, as mentioned in the article of African American families outside of “The Smiths”. I think too often we put the burden on “one” example whether it’s Oprah, Earl Graves, or Lebron, etc. The point is not to idol worship, but to do your thing in your local community, your family, and make a difference with your life that can be passed on for future generations. The truth is that, living in Philadelphia, and having followed Will Smith since his high school days, I know personally that he does contribute and support many non-profits and philanthropic endeavors. The same with Jada. If they do if for media attention, or if the media deems these efforts “newsworthy” is another question. But Will and Jada are both quite intelligent. So, I wouldn’t play them cheap by assuming that “someone else” had to want “develop the talent” of their children. I’m sure they’re approached by lots of “someone else’s” and have learned to discern what’s int he best interest of their own children. Seems to be working pretty good too. Thanks for your comments!!

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