Pulling themselves up by the bootstraps when they are walking around barefoot in an oppressive world.
It is fair to say that the majority of blacks can only imagine what being filthy rich it is like. Given economical gaps intentionally designed to hold them back, most will never enjoy the exhilarating feeling of sashaying around town with wads of cash in our pockets. Or else, the animation of engaging in reckless spending knowing, there is more where that came from.
In stark contrast to those poverty-stricken types, are our black brothers and sisters dwelling among the rich and famous. Yes, I am talking about those who are well endowed with the stuff they call, “the root of all evil.”
In fairness, many of our wealthy brothers and sisters came up on the rough side of the mountain amassing wealth the hard way. Meaning, through scrapes and scuffles; by hook and crook; and not without intense groveling and begging.
Any affluent black person who has ever been the character in a “rags to riches story” would readily admit that being broke is no joke. Creditors are vicious and nasty, even intrusive. What is more, those doling out subsidies are unforgiving and insensitive. And the rest of the world just treats you like dirt, or worst, pond scum.
But for their lack of humility and compassion, no one would dare criticize the black and rich for not wanting to return to that somber state when their money was tight, and their green was lean.
But the lack of humility and compassion is the main crux of it all, isn’t it? As is, a guiltless disassociation. Rich blacks seemingly want nothing to do with poor black people. It is as if poverty is so contagious, it could seep from poor people’s pores into theirs.
For this reason, there is a bit of selective amnesia that comes into play. There is little room for nostalgia or trips back down memory lane. Disallowed are any reminders of the days of old when those now prosperous blacks lived from pillar to post, with tin cup in hand.
For the more affluent blacks, those times must remain a thing of the past. Henceforth, there seems not to be an ounce of compassion from black moguls. They live in ivory towers staring down their noses at the downtrodden and poor. Instead of sympathy and empathy, they feel nothing but foreboding disdain.
Rumor has it that a few years ago, Floyd “Money” Mayweather was flaunting his cash in such a sacrilegious way that it drew uninvited attention. He was literally captured on film with a million dollars sprawled all across his bed. In another instance, Mayweather was flaunting a 1.2-million-dollar deposit into an undisclosed bank account.
Disgracefully, while his net worth exceeds $380 million, it is unlikely that one, red cent of it has been contributed to the black cause. Apparently, lifting blacks out of the 'rotten garbage' in which they find themselves, is not Mayweather's thing.
The same can be said of other magnates too—Will Smith, Tyler Perry, Oprah Winfrey, and Morgan Freeman top the list of the wealthiest black men and women in America. Sorrowfully, they have been no less tightfisted concerning their black brothers and sisters or helping them out of their muck and miry clay.
Ironically, as often as we marvel at the racial oppression of blacks by "privileged" whites, we are finding ourselves no less bowled over at the economic oppression of blacks by other "privileged" blacks. Meaning, those who are so misguided in their obligation to humanity.
In truth, we know that no one has the right to impose how another's money is spent. That is, until tightfisted, black moguls begin preaching to those who are poor and less fortunate. Or else, castigate and lecture them about bettering themselves. Conveniently, many of those sounding off about the scales of economic opportunity being fair readily dismiss that were it not for acting, music, or sports, they too might be pounding payment, waving brown-colored cardboard signs.
I gather destitute blacks have had all they can take from uppity blacks sermonizing about how they must pull themselves up by the bootstraps, as if doing so is just that easy. Having been down for so long, emerging victoriously is not plain sailing.
One thing is for certain, it requires far more than lip service or that sweet-talking lyric of being constantly labeled a reject of society. It means investing in depraved communities; erecting programs designed for upward mobility; and empires that put those who want to work, to work. Or else, how about just reaching into those very deep pockets and spreading the wealth. Suffice it to say, it's high time rich black folks put their money where their mouth is!