THE PATHETIC STATE OF AFFAIRS
This article is still being edited
“Our refusal as Black people to confront the issue of money and wealth is going to end up with our very lives being threatened as a people in this earth.” – Dr. Amos Wilson
Yes the rumors are true, black people will find any excuse to twist and squirm their way out of supporting each other. They might say AMEN and stomp their feet when you shout #BUYBLACK, you might get 1k likes on social media. But what you will not get is SALES! That is the mindset we are dealing with. Now let us cut to the chase, as a race we own NOTHING. That shocking truth does not compel action, it seems to generate even more excuses not to support. While every other race is loyal to their market, black people say “do not use guilt to get my sale.”
There are two parts to this story which are creating a horrible loop. Because of lack of support, businesses do not emerge to support. So sometimes African consumers would love to support but cannot find businesses to support. And they cannot find businesses to support because if and when they do exist they are not supported, hence eventually no longer exist.
Today the world we see is the world we created; it is a world very different from the world of our recent ancestors . They lived in a world where they were next to powerless to control any of the events in their lives. Unlike us, they could not decide to go and read African books and gain information; they could not create beautiful historical museums, or celebrate Kwanzaa without permission.
But today, we are the fortunate generation because we have choice. So the world we see, or do not see, is the world created exclusively by our choices. I always wanted to be able to buy quality African clothes online, but very few outlets existed. I would love to find an African owned baby story with only African products for sale, targeted at African children– to my knowledge none exist. I would love to buy a DVD called Mansa Musa which matched the best that Hollywood can make-unfortunately it has never been made, and even if made would probably be owned by Europeans. The reason for that is because the accumulation of Black choices has not been enough to bring it into existence–nothing more and nothing less. Some try to sugarcoat it, but it really is only the work of Black choice. No, not White supremacy, or the World Bank, but the collective pan-African choices we make. And no one is putting a gun to our heads when we support
everything but our own.
It is almost the more beneficial a product and service is for African people, the more likely it is for them not to support. When it comes to support for skin bleaching, lace weave — we do not have a problem.
This all is beyond debate because you just need to look across the world and ask the question– why do we own so little? There are only a few possible answers. Either we just do not have the skills, like others, to run business or we are held back by external forces. While all of these are true, the issue of lack of support tied to poor business skills and poor opportunities, create the perfect storm. And this storm is getting worse, for today what we own is diminishing–not increasing.
Everyone has an excuse but there are no excuses. We own nothing in this world because of our choices. Excuses are therefore null and void. Business advertising permeate this page, yet the millions who visit this site every year loves the content although very few support the beautiful African owned businesses. Unfortunately this site does not run on air and we are unable to continue running it without support.
I DO NOT NEED TO SUPPORT
is thinking just like you. And this is our curse–non-support. It is like there is a fire in the neighborhood burning all our houses down and we all are thinking that someone MUST have called 911– but nobody has, so all our houses burn down.
Africans do not make cars like Koreans, we do not make motorcycles like the Japanese, we do not make fabric like the Indians. We do not make everything like the Chinese. We do not make weapons like the British and Americans. We love making music but none of the equipment used to make music is made by us. So if you wanted right now to support an African mobile phone, you really could not. If you wanted to spend all your money on an African TV you could not. But this is not the case with African clothes, some cosmetics, bags, some shoes, jewelry, etc. So these are some areas people can do something about right now, these are areas you can support.
A eat out is billed at $120 dollars for the family– no big deal, no complaints. All of that $120 goes to White/Asian/Indian communities to make those businesses stronger. Yet the same family that dropped $120 will not buy a DVD for $20 bucks, or some African clothes at $80 a pop. Clothes and DVDS that will not end up in the toilet in the morning.
Now, some people complained about the price of Negash shoes, Ocacia Designer Clothing and conscious films like Motherland and 500 Years Later. One “black” guy on social media who just raised price as a barrier to wearing beautiful handmade African clothes had no problem forking out $400 US for concert tickets to see Rihanna for 2 hrs, and $200 to take family to see 12 Years a Slave. In South Africa, regardless of people’s economic status they seem to always find money for their hair and brand name clothes. So never think that as a people we actually have a price problem; just a priority problem. Our value system is set by the White world. So if Puma has Pumps for $800, the poorest of the poor will still support, while they would not support a beautiful dashiki hand made for $80.
HOW THE WORLD WORKS
Not everyone knows this so let us explain it for those who can read this entire message. Many would say “where is the Black Facebook?” it makes sense for us to have it since we all seem to spend so much time on Mark’s Facebook. We think it is free but there is nothing free about it; because on Facebook you are either their client, or their product (up for sale). Anyway, why don’t we have an African YouTube, or a designer company like Hugo Boss doing African clothing? Truth is all of these things we either have or had. Many Africans get the idea and go and try to create our own stuff in the world we live in. But the problem beyond lack of support is that Mark did not get successful with Facebook on his own. Neither did Hugo Boss, or Calvin.
What happened was there was Mr Hugo, and around them 1000 other White owned businesses to support. So, a historical Hollywood film comes like 300, you have marketing companies sharing the studio’s vision, you have CNN sharing the producers vision, you have writers, you have Wikipedia all working together to make their stuff successful. You then have the Greek government behind them and White investors, historians and scholars. Not so the case with 500 Years Later, which got no mention by 99.999% of the black press–the first major review came from White socialist not Kam Williams.
Now when it comes to Africans, Ocacia Designer Clothing can design the best clothes until Star Trek returns to prime time but what extended networks are they connected to? Will the so-called Black Fashion magazines back them, the “Black” banks (if any exist) back them or the “African” TV networks share their vision? Where in most cases none exist? But in cases where they do exist, they exist to support Hugo Boss and the White world. The “Black” film critics are not interested in 500 Years Later but in Dunkirk. The Black scholars are not interested in Sankofa, but what bad things National Geographic said about slavery. Or some tangent issue.
You must understand this in order to grasp why our world is a desert when it comes to ownership and power. Yes people try, but like a seed in a desert, it has nothing to help it grow. No rain, no proper soil, nothing. And then on top of this is the African majority who only support what Whites verify. So it would take CNN to come and say; “Motherland (2010) is the best doc ever made on Africa” for Africans globally to go and support.
LOW QUALITY ISSUE
Low quality ties into our inability to run a business, and it is valid when people use it as an excuse to avoid African owned products and services. How many times have many of us tried to support African business only to be totally disappointed? Good people have lost $1000’s because they picked terrible African businesses. So this issue of non-support would be incomplete if we did not also discuss the poor performance and low standards of many African run businesses. This dyadic relationship needs two hands to clap, to truly fix the issue of non-support.
Two areas therefore need work. People must support, and businesses must produce the best of the best. Because at the end of the day, if someone needs to buy a phone that works and helps them in their life, they need to buy Samsung from Korea until Nairobi gets a competitive product going.
But we need to be very realistic. There is no point expecting someone in Africa to make a phone today to beat Samsung. We must, like everyone else, crawl before we can walk. We cannot produce films like 300 and Lord of the Rings if people cannot even support a documentary flick on slavery. We cannot discuss “Where are the African fabric manufacturers”, when we barely have African clothing labels and online outlets. It is asinine and ignorant to think any group can come with world class goods without taking many baby steps.
Let us isolate one comment made on Facebook to show the level of the slave mentality and its rationale. And all of this rambling is for one reason and one reason only, to justify self-hate.
Ominiyi Adesanya Awoyade One problem with untested clothing brands is the customer lacks the opportunity to experience the clothing first hand before a purchase…Is the fabric stiff??..Is it cheaply made?? Will it hold up over many washings?? Will I be proud to wear this garment one year from now??..If it doesn’t fit well will I have to launch an all out war with their customer service dept in order to exchange or refund it…
This is a ridiculous standard which they ONLY apply to African products. It seems to make sense but if Japan employed this method of putting its products next to American products in the early days how would they ever have grown to become world giants today? Or do we expect non-support to give birth to a new car industry to rival Ferrari without growing steps? The next thing is to assume everything African is low quality. So once quality is verified then what is the next excuse not to buy?
PS…No amount of guilt tripping will compel Black folk to buy from you just because you are Black…We like nice s**t just like every other consumer.
No, Africans do not like nice stuff like everyone else. This is why Africa is the dumping ground of all manner of garbage from the East and America. As long as whites or Chinese are supplying it — we buy it. Many of the things imported to Africa from the outside world are inferior iterations of the products in their native lands. So if guilt tripping does not work, then nothing will and Africans should stop complaining about how oppressed we are. You cannot have your cake and eat it too. We do not want to build industry, we do not want to unite, we do not want to work on increasing our skills, we do not want to lobby, we do not want to study our history, we do not want to venerate our heroes, we do not want to practice Buy Black but we want to be the next Tiger Economy by sitting on our hands and shouting in the streets. This is why African people are our own greatest enemy. The real people holding us back are Black.
Having been in business for over 20 years and trying almost everything from films, to clothes, to online services, you see a pattern. Unless you target a broad demographic your returns from targeting products for Africans is almost a good way to ruin your business– unless those products are harmful– like fake hair.
A Nigerian friend came to me for business advice and I had to tell him if you want to feed your family, you will make more money doing fake hair, than healthy organic products. Between selling conscious films and Black Soaps you will go out of business doing conscious historical films. And while these problems are 100% true for all groups, White and everyone else is able to successfully own a greater market share of diverse businesses, may that be historical books, historical films, health products, whatever.
If you are a filmmaker, unless you are planning to make that stereotypical garbage you could just forget about feeding your family from conscious films, or any conscious products.
We need to understand the enslaved mind, the mind that at any opportunity wants to tear down as opposed to support. You say here is a company in Africa, owned by Africans doing conscious products– what does the Negro mind ask? “But who owns it”? For the first time in their life WHO owns something becomes central as they turn from memes, jokes, and no interest in African anything into a Pan-African economists with a fine-toothed comb. In their house and on their backs are everything made by Whites and Chinese– ownership for 99.999% of the time bothers them none. On their DVD shelf is Iron Man 5, Lord of the Rings : The desolation of Smaug, Sex in the City. The Blackest thing they ever watched was 12 Years Still a Slave. The White ownership or Asian ownership of things does not bother them. The only time they need to know how pitch black and Afro your hair is, is when it is owned by Africans and is something of an economic benefit to our community. And the same for people active in liberation, they want to review you with a fine-toothed comb as opposed to supporting and thanking God that someone is doing the work.
- Only if they had a store in my area I would support.
- Black Business is are not competitive (how can they be when they get no support to grow)?
- Do not trust them because they do not have a New York Times review.
- “I am going to buy it now” when you ask “did you buy it” oh my wife said we have an event at Xmas so wait till then.
- Too expensive or I would support. “I really wish the prices were more reasonable because I want to support”
- I love it, I am going to check it out– but they never make it to the checkout. Just hollow compliments and empty promises to attract attention.
- But do black people really own it? And where is the money really going? Never asked Walmart this.
- I wonder if they have my size? The question they ask on Facebook, not to the company selling the clothes.
- But is the fabric from Africa and do they own the cotton fields– impossible criteria. Versace does not only use Italian fabric.
- Red herring, let us talk about something else on a space that requires support. Let me discuss How the White man stole our history, as opposed to support the real work which redresses that issue.
- Can you make me an African spacesuit, then I would support. This is how they get out of supporting what exist right now.
You know there are people out there that really have no plans of supporting, but they get put on the spot, like how do you justify NOT supporting? So what they do is go to a business and look for excuses not to support:
I was going to support but they did not have a store in my area (I don’t use credit cards online).
I was going to support but the price was too high.
I was going to support but I didn’t like their attitude.
I was going to support but the website was slow.
I was going to support but was not sure if they were really black owned, would need DNA verification from ancestry.org before I support (need to be sure it is not Whites exploiting our culture).
And what is interesting is some are so mentally gone we will question and interrogate African owned and designed clothes with a microscope– these same people have no such urges when they go to the local mall to waste all their money on Chinese and European clothes. So wearing European clothes made in Bangladesh is ok, but when it comes to African clothes they need proof of ethnicity of ownership before they buy (and then they do not Buy). On Juporn Asapra Garner like Linda Randolph-Ragin (see comment in image below) he curses everything White an Arab and any African who he sees as a traitor. He goes on to post about 5 signs of mental slavery yet is on social media voicing non-support on the suspicion that a 100% African owned conscious business empowering Africans in Africa is run by Whites. This is the fruit of so-called Afrocentrism decades after titans like Amos Wilson. This is what has become of their minds.
Linda Randolph-Ragin “Really???!!! Made in Africa via slave wages no doubt, so some rich white man’s company can haul them back here and make millions??? while the ppl in Africa, who made them, remain dirt poor. …Thanx but NO THANX, I’m gon pass.” (rationale “Doesn’t the post say Made in Africa”)
I have never seen so many negative comments about a Black owned company. Like y’all not wearing clothes that looks like another designer. Geesh, Looking forward to seeing this company skyrocket. God bless you!– Disgusted Facebook User
ECONOMICS OF NON SUPPORT
NO SUPPORT= NO HOPE
Do Africans own it, and secondly, are they are conscious Africans? If you are unclear about what/who an African is, then you are in a bad space. If you are unclear about what conscious means then you are probably beyond help. It has to be like this because we are not at the start of the modern era, we are in the era of globalization where cultures vie for dominance and if most of us want to still be asleep in a world wide awake then let the sleepers continue to sleep in their confusion. Because no one is waiting for Africans to figure out identity and ownership. And we really do not need to waste time talking about this too much. If, with your own eyes you see the quality, you see the consciousness–then buy.
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|1.||↑||reply: People ask who owns Ocacia. Its seems African people doubt their own ability so much that some struggle to think that Africans can create an online business at the level of Ocacia. But if you really worried about who owns Ocacia it is explained on the site. (but did the people with this concern visit the site? or care to privately email us? ). Next thing someone said they were worried that their money spent buying African clothes might not be going to Africans. Hold up! All this week they have been spending money on things that no African owns–why not raise this criteria then? Black Panther film made millions from Africans, why was this criteria not raised when they supported it? I mean it is an African story but all the profits are not in any Africans account. Most clothes on the market are made by Chinese, most people who are concerned about our owners ancestry wear 100% clothes that are NOT owned by Africans–so why now the deep investigation after we said we were 100% African owned? ‘Just another way to tear down and create distrust|