NewsOne recently gathered some of the most dynamic financial experts and business owners to discuss how to move the needle on Black ownership, circulating more dollars in our community and financial empowerment. The panel, “Business First: Dismantling the Economic Effects of Institutionalized Racism,” is the first of a series of planned discussions NewsOne will host about how to activate change.
The talk was moderated by NewsOne’s managing editor, Bruce C.T. Wright, and featured Shawn Rochester, author of The Black Tax; wealth coach Ash Cash; Kalilah Wright, founder of Mess in a Bottle; and Shelly Bell, founder of Black Girl Ventures. Of course, the economic-minded thought leaders had a lot to say.
“Because of where I sit I think about how we determine who is the person that looks like the right person to give capital, opportunities…What does equity look like there?,” Bell said. “I also think about the fact that Black people haven’t had enough time to have business uninterrupted, maybe 60 years.”
But it’s not just about business practices. Economic racism literally dictates how and where Black people live.
“When you look at the wealth gap, the majority was created through home ownership, and we weren’t even allowed to participate,” Cash said while adding that the longterm impact of redlining—one of many discriminatory policies— isn’t limited to the creation of urban ghettos, but the ability of generations of whites to use home equity as collateral for business loans, something that African Americans can not do as often or at all with homes that lack value and equity. And Black people who owned valuable property and land weren’t always able to keep it.
“Let’s also think about domestic terrorism, the KKK, people don’t think about how that wiped out billions of dollars from the Black community,” Cash added. “Think about how Black people fled north—who do you think occupied that land?”
Want to hear more from our experts? Check out the panel by clicking here or watching it below. Continue the conversation and share your thoughts on the topics by writing in the comment section.