By Kamose Muhammad, and Founder and CEO of Freedom Paper Company, LLC
As we seek to answer the base question, “Why is it that Black people must be continually inspired to buy Black?“, we must consider if in fact the question has merit. There may be some who believe that Black people do not have to be inspired to “Buy Black” and that we actually do buy Black regularly or at least as much as other cultures and or communities buy from their respective people. As there is plenty of information on the reality of the spending habits of Black people, I shall use just a couple of sources of strong data to see what the stats are on Black people buying Black.
In a recent State of the African-American Consumer Report it was stated- black buying power has increased from $957.3 billion in 2010 to an expected $1.3 trillion by 2017. This shows us that there is money, capital that is growing, and potentially wealth growing in the Black Community; but what are we doing with that money? According to a 2012 NAACP article by Nicole Kenney, Economic Program Specialist; we are not doing much at all with our money to benefit Black people. Ms. Kenney states, “Currently, a dollar circulates in Asian communities for a month, in Jewish communities approximately 20-days and white communities 17-days. How long does a dollar circulate in the Black community? Six hours!!! African American buying power is at 1.1 Trillion; and yet only 2 cents of every dollar an African American spends in this country goes to Black-owned businesses.”
The facts are the facts and for any naysayer there are hundreds of pages of data, studies, and research all which bring us to the conclusion that we, Black people, spend very little of our dollars with our own. All stated it can be concluded that it is more than a relevant question to ask; Why is it that Black people must be continually inspired to buy Black?
I will here state, that what is natural for all human beings is this; it is natural to interact with, relate to, want to be around, and of course do business with those who are your own people, race, and/or culture first and foremost. The data already presented shows Asians, Jews, and Caucasians all more so than not, do what is natural; support their own. Why is it that Black people seem not to follow the natural course of action and behavior which can be proven in no limit of time leads to survival and yes better survival? Has something happened to Black people to cause unnatural behavior when it comes to our spending habits and support of our own people?
We must now delve into the recesses of history for answers. For history holds for us the keys to what, why, and how. It is in the study of our history as well as the study of the history of others that we come face to face with truth; thus giving us the power of overstanding our grand challenge to survival itself and the power to conquer our grand challenge of loving self and kind, naturally. The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad stated, “Of all our studies history is the most attractive and best qualified to reward our research, as it develops the springs and motives of human action and displays the consequences of circumstances which operates most powerfully on the destiny of human beings.”
Editors note: This article is Part I of a series. Stay tuned for, “Why is it That Black People Must be Continually Inspired to Buy Black? Part II”.
Kamose Muhammad is the Founder and President of Freedom Paper Company, LLC. Freedom Paper Company is a privately owned distributor of bathroom tissue and other paper products headquartered in Baltimore Maryland. The company is unique from other corporations as it is born from the foundation of grassroots movement combined with the best of corporate culture and business acumen. To learn more visit www.FreedomPaperCompany.com