By Twanna F.
I want you to imagine your neighborhood in your head. You look around and see houses filled with people that look just like you. Parks and schools are filled with beautiful Black youth. Churches are packed with us too. So, it’s safe to say this is our neighborhood right? Wrong. Where it matters most, Black faces simply aren’t there. For example, behind the counter of a corner store or a restaurant. Even our schools don’t really belong to us, we are taught a curriculum that caters to a white America. All while going to church and praying to images of a God that looks much like the owners of the businesses we rely on to survive. It is not a coincidence and it has to change. Activist and successful rap artist, Killer Mike thinks so too, so much so that he filmed a docu-series about it. In the first episode he attempts to live Black, consuming and utilizing products and services owned strictly by Black people. It wasn’t long before he realized he couldn’t eat, find shelter, make phone calls or find transportation with ease anymore. It’s a scary truth, to know how much money we give to other races. But shortly after giving us our wake up call he provides solutions.
Episode 2 tackles the school system. Granted, it would take years to change the focus of the curriculum but his ideas were interesting nonetheless. And although higher ups in the school system were apprehensive he proved to them that his ideas could work. Killer Mike wants to bring back home economics. Too many of us, especially in the Black community, grow up not knowing how to file our taxes, fix things around the house and ultimately take care of ourselves. So not only does he think home economics should make a comeback, he feels it should be the main focus in the curriculum as well as learning trades, like plumbing and electrical. It’s difficult to hear an adult tell children to stop dreaming big, but reality comes sooner than later to tell us what we should’ve learned in school years ago. The reality is that only one of us gets to be president, only a few of us get to be famous. So for the majority that will be leading very normal lives, why not be prepared at least? Having this knowledge can’t hurt your dreams and aspirations, but not knowing could surely stunt your growth as an adult.
Episode 3 of the series was inspirational AF. Killer Mike dreams of a world where Black people can profit off their “villains”, the way white people have for years, and makes it a reality. Bloods and Crips have never been deemed marketable the way white gangs and drug dealers have. So, Mike gets members of both gangs to start soda companies, Crip-o-Cola and Blood Pop. Of course getting to a point where we have the option to buy Black for every product we use won’t be easy but it’s necessary. Every other race has the ability to sell to us but we don’t have the ability to sell to them, let alone ourselves. So, it starts with ideas like his, finding ways to not only keep Black dollars in the Black community but also getting other races to spend their money with us too. I think one of the biggest takeaways I got from this series is that independence is power and once we have it the possibilities are endless.
I recommend that you all watch a few episodes because his ideas are pretty interesting. Some of them are a bit far fetched and you can see what I mean in the last couple of episodes but overall I think the message is great. So learn a trade. Start that business. Black people we need to see ourselves represented in every field possible and we gotta learn to take care of ourselves because no one else is going to teach us.