Are we crabs in a barrel?
I'm gone keep this one real simple, according to my observation of the "So-called Black Community," which isn't an accurate definition of us in my opinion! I don't dispute the title "Black" in this present moment, the term community is what I have a problem with cause that ain't us. We don't operate in the spirit of oneness, not unless it's centered around pain and despair. Our collective mindset functions and feeds on victimization, but when it comes to creating opportunities and collectively becoming successful, we go our separate ways.
Why is it that we energize and become creative only in the spirit of competition, instead of providing goods and services that we can all benefit from. Example, maybe a year or so ago there were two Black Owned and Operated restaurants in Bronzeville that had very similar menus. Instead of one successful restaurant that serviced the neighborhood, both struggled to keep there doors open, which resulted in both of them closing after only a few years of being in business. It was sad to see it happen because both female owners were beautiful people, with well intentions for themselves and the community. A spirit of cooperation could have either kept both restaurants open, or they could've combined and became one successful entity. This is hardly an isolated situation, the majority of businesses fail because of lack of capital, and often the business owner has to sustain their livelihood from profits made by the business instead of being able to reinvest.
I fully understand that competition is what helps individuals rise to greatness, those that have the stamina to overcome the obstacles, but why hasn't there been a competition to open a grocery store, or car manufacturer, or even farms that grow the food that's served in our restaurants. It seems like we only want to do what the next man or woman is doing, outshine them and only then will we feel successful.
I have a vision of collecting a group of individuals, no more than five to start with, who would support one business every six months. The group would collectively raise funds to support a members business, paying rent and allowing the owner to reinvest all profits for those six months with the expectation that when the six months was complete, that business would be functional enough to allow the owner to become an investor in the next members business and so-on!
That's been my vision for almost ten years, but for the first time I've become somewhat weary. Recently I've started a business, the business concentrates on music, and more recently clothing. Before it was considered a clothing line, it was selling merchandise, or merch to compliment the music. Before I began advertising my talents they were there, although they may have been lying dormant at times, I still possessed them... At those times, I did what could to support those that moved on their dreams ahead of my own. I supported with money, time, and my word, which I used to promote their businesses to friends of my mine, as well as acquaintances. Sadly, I haven't received anything that resembles support... It would be easy to speculate, but why should I! A quote that I continue to hear lately comes from Frank Sinatra, although he has never been a role model, and I wouldn't consider him part of the culture, he once said, " The best revenge, is massive success," and that road seems to fit my character best.... Peace!