CALDWELL: The Power of Blackness in Politics and Economics in 2021

This is a photo of Roger Caldwell, an NNPA columnist and long-time contributor to the Advocate
Roger Caldwell is an NNPA Columnist and a long-time contributor to the Advocate
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By Roger Caldwell

As America prepares for the Biden administration, without the Black/ African American vote, the President-Elect would not have won the election. President-Elect Biden is well aware of this reality, and the significance of the Black vote is that it matters, because it wins elections.

With the decision to pick Vice-President Harris, the choice has broken the glass ceiling, and a Black diverse woman has become the second most powerful politician in America and the world. In the 2020 presidential election, the Black community showed up at the ballot box in record numbers. Black mayors are taking leadership roles in their cities and towns, and motivating the community to vote

There are so many Black mayors in the country, it has become commonplace to see them educating, and helping to get voters to the polls. According to senior fellow Tann Von Howe of cities and towns research in 2020, there are over 165 Black mayors across the country.

In state legislatures across the country there are 5% to 15% of Black legislators, and in many states they are in positions of authority and power. On the federal level, there are 53 Congress-persons, and 3 Senators. Even though Blacks have the most minorities in office, there is no specific plan or definitive Black agenda.

Black buying power in America is $1.5 trillion, and on a global level we have no idea of our reach. There is no international economic plan or agenda, and Blacks in America have not put together a strategy for Africa. 

There is a surge in small Black owned businesses, and the college graduation rate has increased to 23% in 2019 compared to 17% in 2000. Everywhere you look in America, Blacks are improving without a specific economicplan or agenda.

“Life is 100% about the choices that we make. And most of the time , we as Black people make choices out of necessity, out of obligation, and regrettably sometimes out of desperation. If we want a better way forward in 2021, our decision making needs to change. As Black and Brown people in the United States, we need a strategy to help us not just survive, but to thrive,” says Sophia Nelson – author of 4 books. 

2020 was a tragic year for Black people with death and sickness around every corner.  It started off with the surprise death of basketball legend Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi Bryant in a helicopter crash. Then in March, the global pandemic decimated the world, and destroyed the economy, and small businesses collapsed, and unemployment reached depression levels.  On January 1, 2021 there were over 20 million Americans who have been infected with the virus and 350,000 have died. 

With food insecurity, homelessness, depression, domestic violence, and with Americans unable to pay their rent or mortgage, Black Men and Women are shot, murdered, and killed by the police at alarming rates. There has been mass protest around the country, and a horrific video of George Floyd being murdered by the Minnesota police.

With all of the success of Black people, America remains a country that is separate and unequal. The wealth gap between Blacks and Whites continues to grow, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, because our passion and power impacts and illuminates America and the entire world.

In 2021 Blacks must develop a plan where we put our self first, and we become optimistically Black about our power. Black lives must matter first, and we must learn to take care of each other first, and be proud of our power in America and Africa.We can no longer wait for White America to save us, because we must save ourselves with love and unity. It is time for Black men and women to work together, and we have a responsibility to save our children. Blacks have the power, execute, and make 2021 optimistically Black.