They Got Theirs, We Need To Get Ours

April 19, 2007

Why is it that immigrants have figured out the path to wealth in this country but we haven’t? USA Today had an article about Indian-Americans controlling 43% of the 47,000 hotels and motels in the country. See that….43%…over 20,000 hotels and motels. And Indian-Americans aren’t the largest minority in this country, but yet they control almost half of an entire industry. Latin-Americans seem to be making headway in the home improvement industry. Black Americans? We just want to get a high paying job or play sports. However, as we move up the company ladder and hit the proverbial glass ceiling, we’re moving out to do our own thing.

Minorities are starting their own business at a faster and faster rate. I see this as a very good sign. Let’s face it, corporate American is still White America. We can’t escape racism, but we can step around it. Immigrants have figured that out and they won’t play the corporate game. They come here and start their own businesses. Black America needs to do the same. We might as well give up the hope of ever getting that 40 acres and a mule. Heck, the only thing the government is going to give us is a tax refund and welfare.

Back to the article, as I read it, a few things struck me. Indian-Americans control over 20,000 hotels. That means, they operate a business that they can literally live in. Also, buying a hotel means that they are also purchasing real estate. Have you noticed that hotels control some of the most desired real estate in the country? So that means that they have profit generating assets that appreciate over time. I wonder what the combined value of 20,000 hotels plus the land is? Almost sounds like they bought 40 acres and a mule huh. And Indian-Americans have accomplished this in less that 40 years.

Me thinks we have some work to do. Lets face it, whining about how unfair the world is not going to get us where we want to go. Blacks need to come together and help ourselves. Indian-Americans helped each other and that’s how they now control 43% of the hotel industry. The Latino community helps each other and they become stronger. The Black community pulls itself down. We’ve got to start taking responsibility for our own community. Nobody “wants” to live in the ghetto. We all want the nice house in the nice neighborhood.

Together, we can all find success. Its very hard if I just get my own and let the rest struggle. If I help the next man, we can grow together. We’ve got to get out of this selfish attitude that we have. This is why, on the Tom Joyner show, Tavis Smiley said he wasn’t concerned about Don Imus. He’s stopped trying to fix the “other” people. He’s just concentrating on getting “us” straight. Steve Harvey felt the same way. We have to uplift ourselves, because it’ll be a cold day in h*** before someone else does.


Career Day

April 10, 2007

Last week, I got the opportunity to participate in a local elementary school’s Career Day. Since this school was in a predominately black neighborhood, I jumped at the chance. Being a young, black and professional male, I figured I’d show these kids that there are some of “them” being successful in life.

I was pretty nervous about going, however. I wasn’t sure how I could keep a class of 1st, 2nd and 4th graders interested for three 30 minute sessions. Once I got started though, the time flew by. And let me tell you, 4th graders can ask some very intelligent and world aware questions. I don’t remember being that worldly (or big) at that age.

All in all, it was fun a experience and I can hardly wait to participate next year. The only thing I regretted was not giving a good answer to one question. I was asked, “what type of family life did I have growing up?” Now, my childhood was very “Cosby-esque”. I had a very good childhood with wonderful parents. I’m sure most of these kids couldn’t say the same and I regret stressing that regardless of their home life, they could still be successful in life. In fact, adversity or a hard life can bring out the genius in some people. Next year, I’ll stress that.

Google Releases Broadband Wireless Service

April 2, 2007

You gotta love these guys. I have to remember to go to Google every April Fool’s Day. Sign up for the service here.