There is no doubt the black community is full of materialistic consumers. Despite being only 13% of the population in the United States, we are large consumers of smart phones, flat screen televisions and other non-essential gadgets and gizmos that give us “status and credibility” in our circles. We spend over $1 trillion dollars annually on our basic needs, but mostly on our materialistic impulses.
It is crazy. We are the most backwards people on the planet, in my opinion. Many say this is because of the conditions we find ourselves in this country are making us this way. Regardless of the reasoning, it is happening, so we need to figure out how to get ourselves out of this hole.
However, before we discover how we are going to get out of this situation, let’s discuss how materialism is killing the black community. Here are my five reasons. I’m sure there are many more and look forward to hearing your take at the end of the article.
Erosion of the Family Structure
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out the more you are into materialism, the greater the need for money. This means we are working longer and harder than ever before at the expense of family time. It doesn’t matter if it is a single or two household families. Everyone is working and spending less time with the children. To compensate for this, we are just buying them things and turning them into materialistic consumers of the future.
Creating Spoiled, Entitled Children
Perhaps most important result of our materialism, we are creating rotten, spoiled children. Seems like the more monetary ladders we climb, the more our kids develop an insatiable appetite for more and more material goods. Everything from smart phones, tablets, video games, clothes, shoes, and other assortment of unnecessary mess are included in their basic list of “needs”.
It is a shame to monitor some of the social media feeds or talk with kids these days to see how frustrated they are over their parents not buying them the right pair of shoes, the purse, or something else. It is sad, but our community is sick in this manner.
Creating Children with Delusional Career Ambitions
If you have spent any time in a school volunteering or mentoring and speaking with the children, you will quickly find out the days of career ambitions being doctor, lawyer, business owner are over. Everyone wants to be a famous entertainer, rapper, singer, or sports athlete. It is crazy because i’m serious.
Obviously, this depends on the area you are in and the school, but there is a large segment of our population that is drowning in the materialism hunt. The kicker is no one wants to work for it. They all feel entitled by birth and access because they are special.
Economic Mis-Direction: Commodities Over Assets
There is nothing wrong with being a consumer, but we are consuming the wrong things. Our materialism has us blinded to the great picture of economics and the importance of sharing the wealth around the community. We just want to buy things that are pretty, carry status and make us feel better. We are purchasing depreciating commodities that are not providing any future economic support for our families instead of assets.
If we were buying assets with this $1 trillion dollar in annual spending or supporting our fellow black business owners, then our community would be in a great position, but we are not. We are buying depreciating commodities that make everyone else rich and us poor. Something must change.
Elevating the Wrong Role Models for Our Youth
Role models are very important to every young child and adult. They use to be found in the home, but those days seem to be over for most families. Today, our role models are discovered on television, in social media and are the big ballers in the community. These are the people that have our ideal lives full of every materialist desire we can fix on our minds.
It doesn’t matter how these people get their wealth, access or material goods. It just matters that they have them. Many of these people are found in the hip hop community and are not teaching our young people the right morals, values and community minded mentality we need for the future.
Source: Urban Intellectuals