by The Mighty O’Ba Pat Freeman
There was a time when our economic destination was mostly controlled by people that looked like us, but now foreign investments are strategically targeted towards our dependence. The loss of entrepreneurship has given rise to an out-pouring of dollars outside our community. The sad thing is that this trend was the by-product of the civil rights struggle which gave rise to many of the freedoms we enjoy today; the side effect was the destruction of the Black Community as a cohesive economic unit.
One of the problems we have as a culture is a lack of awareness and the need to take care of personal interest. We have power yet we compromise ourselves by allowing manipulations of a marketing system. The system of capitalism emphasizes fair compromise and this usually becomes the instrument of hurting our community.
There was a time when the main stripe of the Black Community was the economic beacon of hope that a better day was coming. The side-effects of the civil rights struggle took hold of rational thinking. This was the beginning of the end of our generational cultural consciousness of supporting one another. In the last 20 years we have witnessed Motown, BET, Radio One, Johnson Publishing, and many more black corporations shift to the hands of those that do not really have our interest at heart, only taking our wealth.
We celebrate the athletic dominance of our athletes but how many of them own these teams that can afford to pay these astronomical salaries? Prior to 1947 we were not allowed to participate in major league baseball. Negro leagues helped to provide an economic catalyst to bus companies, hotels, concessions, and stadium operation because blacks were not allowed in the so called big leagues. This was the beginning of the total shift in an economic thinking, and led to the mentality towards the destruction of the black community. Yes, many of you are in denial of how we continue to feed into a system that has targeted us only as a consumer. Just few weeks ago a question was raised to me, if I knew so much why do I still work at Mix 1080 AM WUFO radio, and not one of the other networks. Before I could answer this deprived person, he fled the scene in the same manner that we allowed our community to fail. If we are not careful, we are going to wake up and all we have remaining will be legal fronts, targeting our dollars without residual benefits.
Before I receive my final instruction from my Creator, it is my hope that we as a people realize we need an economic policy reboot before all of the gains we have made are in control of other hands than our own. I am appealing to elected leadership that there needs to be an immediate emphasis on wealth building, and entrepreneurial training. Daily and weekly readings should include all community based print, radio media, plus the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg Report. Before my service record ends I want to see established in the community Hakim’s Business report, Radford Educational Initiative news, Merriweather Media Center, and the Ras Jomo economic development project. This is not a dream, unless we take immediate action to stop this madness against the rise of our own people, the final ties to community will be called a thing of the past.
Pat Freeman writes for the Buffalo Criterion. If you enjoy talking about the world of sports tune into the number#1 sports show in the nation every Saturday from 4:00-5:00PM hosted by WUFO Sports Director Patrick Freeman on 1080AM WUFO radio, radio app., Periscope, or via the internet at www.wufoam.com. Or catch Sports Update for clbTV (ch.20 Buffalo) and YouTube.