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 Why Many Black Communities are Depressed

By Jay Thomas Willis, Senior Columnist and Political Analyst

The Mid-South Tribune

and the

Black Information Highway

RICHTON PARK, IL - We live in a depressed and stagnant economy, with a high rate of unemployment. Some say the economy is worse than it has been since the Depression. It doesnít help the situation of Black men that when a Black is hired, itís most likely to be a woman. Black women seem to be preferred over Black men. Though, unemployment is high both among Black men and Black women. It seems to be true that the thinking is by hiring a Black woman it takes care of two minorities. Even if the economy does improve, unemployment will still look bleak for Black men, if we donít make some changes in the way we function in our communities. This leaves Black men with the same old choices: jails, mental institutions, drugs, homicides, or military.

            We allow other groups to come into our communities and fix our appliances, work on our cars, do our plumbing and electrical work, provide us with lawn services to maintain our lawns, as well as other kinds of maintenance. Blacks tolerate other individuals coming into their communities and providing the essential services needed to run that community.

            We do this when we have older adults and teenagers sitting around playing video games and getting involved in inappropriate behaviors. Sometimes these individuals donít have any hope of getting a job, and many of them have quit looking. And we wonder why some Black men get involved in negative behaviors.

            It would be fine if there was reciprocity involved in this process. But other groups are very protective of who they allow to come into their communities and provide such services. In many cases we are pursued and rerouted if we enter their communities.

            We need to train Black males in our communities on how to provide the necessary services to our communities to keep them growing and thriving. We have enough jobs right in our own communities to keep them from deteriorating while keeping Black men employed. There is a lot of need for basic services to maintain the community.

            There is a need to train Black men in carpentry, plumbing, electrical work, masonry, roofing, appliance repair, lawn service, all manner of work related to the construction trades, all manner of work related to maintaining infrastructure, and other necessary services.

            By giving our money to other groups for the provision of such services is just another way in which our communities are thereby drained of its resources. We need to keep this money in our community so it can circulate many times.

            Some of us fail to realize that even during slavery we provided many of these type services, but after slavery we were barred from most of them. We can and we must get back to providing these essential services.

            These are the kind of jobs that could keep Black men employed in a depressed economy. If we fail to provide these jobs we fail to keep Black men working. We hire others to do these jobs, and complain about Black men being unemployed. In too many cases there is nothing to do except get involved in self- and other-destructive behaviors.

            Without these jobs Black men are left to sit idle on the corner and vegetate. There are plenty of jobs to be had right there in the Black community. Our communities shouldnít be left to deteriorate. For a person without an education, such a job pays sufficiently well, and the work is not difficult.

            A community will deteriorate if it is totally dependent on other groups for maintenance, growth, and development.

            We cannot build the Black community if we leave Black men out of the equation, and the present scenario leaves Black men out, and dooms the Black community to failure.

            Black men canít support their families, and help make the community viable without jobs. Black men also need jobs to maintain a sense of self-esteem and good mental health.

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Mr. Willis is a Senior Columnist and Political Analyst for The Mid-South Tribune ONLINE and the Black Information Highway. He is the author of twenty-three books, fifteen professional journal articles, a number of magazine articles, and over 300 newspaper articles. His books can be reviewed at www.jaythomaswillis.com . Email him direct at jaytwillis@gmail.com .

 

 

 

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