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Berdine Dennard Berdine's Corner
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Kenney Dennard Publisher
The Power of Black Ownership Leaves Our Community Weak
berdine dennard
Kenney Dennard

A couple of weekends ago, a friend of mine called me to see if I wanted to join him and a few friends out for drinks in one of Atlanta’s newest hot spots.  I had spent the majority of the week out of town and was just getting home, but because I hadn't been out in months, I decided to run home, change clothes and meet him out.  He texted me the directions, and I was on my way.

When I arrived to the location, I was surprised to see how jam-packed it was. There were cars out to the street and overflowing to the next couple of parking lots.

When I got in, I was even more surprised. It was a Mexican Lounge. Before I go any further, please understand I have absolutely nothing against Mexicans. However, during the whole night I spent my time trying to wrap my mind around the mindset of my people. There was not one Mexican there partying or lounging. They were all there working. The only working Black there was the DJ.

Here's what bothered me. After years of building this country for free as slaves, fighting for freedom, then having to fight to be integrated into society and be treated equal, arguably, we finally won the battle. This opened the doors of opportunity for us as well as any and all other races to come over and have a piece of this American Pie/Dream. Unfortunately, what has happened is every other race has come right in to take advantage of what this country has to offer and what we fought for. Meanwhile blacks continue to work for other people, support other people’s businesses but do almost nothing as a people.

Visit any black community across the country, and you'll notice they are filled with pawn shops owned by whites, liquor stores owned by whites, Indians, and others, grocery stores and corner stores and ethnic restaurants. Japanese, Chinese, Caribbean, and many other cultures make pretty good money in the black community. Indians and Vietnamese have figured out that black women will pay a ton on straight horse or Indian hair, so they make a killing with beauty supply stores that sell wigs and weaves. The only thing that we seem to own in our communities are the barber and beauty shops, night clubs, and churches.

Most of the popular clubs in Atlanta are owned by whites although blacks manage them. However, nowadays, as I mentioned earlier, other races such as Mexicans have even figured us out and have started to capitalize on our ignorance and laziness, taking even more dollars out our pockets as we sit and buy the bar for our friends and family.

To take it a step further, I own a house in Riverdale, GA. When I moved there, I thought I was moving into a black neighborhood. On my block, at least half of the houses are owned by whites and rented out to Blacks. It's almost like musical chairs watching the neighbors move in and out of their rent situations every few months. When the house is empty, I see the whites come buy and check on their property.

So in essence, as a people, we work for the whites all week; they pay us; and we take that money and give it right back to them for rent, cars, groceries, credit cards, and every other necessities. Then to have a good time, we go to the liquor stores, clubs and lounges and give the rest of the money left from our earnings. They go back to their communities and countries with that money and rebuild while we stay in broke down hoods and complain about how they never fix our roads and schools or build our communities up. Nevertheless we continue the cycle on Monday, by going right back to punch their clocks.

Because we as black people own little or nothing, it makes us a weaker race with weaker communities. We are modern day slaves and sharecroppers who work to make everyone rich but us. We went from slavery to sharecroppers to this. When are we going to wake up and do something about it?


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