Saturday, March 31, 2012

Can Social Media re-shape Black America

     The uphill struggle for black equality and respect just got help, social media. The success of the Civil Rights movement was predicated on the unity of like minded people fighting for a common cause. So what happened, who pushed the pause button on the hunt for social equality and economic justice. Some blame the crumbling family structure, others say economic gains by some blacks blurs the line between progress and equal opportunity for the advancement of all. Its true southern segregation spawned sit- ins, marches, protests, suffering and death, televised, but generally localized through the southern states.
     So how now, in these times of two jobs to survive, multiple distractions, and the general complexity of modern life do we get that back. What could be the plan to make a concerted long term statement without taking food off of the table, yet still making a sacrifice for the cause. Recent marches have shown  effectiveness in shedding light on  given issues, but the black community, now leaderless, can learn from the occupy movement, that multiple nationwide marches do little more than raise awareness without real change and sustained results.
     In America the legitimacy of a group is defined by the strength of its block, voting or economic. A unified mass exodus of a given block in either of these two instances garners courtship, thus the block is taken more seriously and treated with respect. But how in the black community, arguably the most fractured block in America do we take our voice back. With practice, and social media. So here's the plan in theory.
     A social media organized boycott by all blacks for one month, lets say Mc Donalds, with their first black CEO ever, and their 365 black program celebrating black history year round, they seem to be sympathetic to the community. They should be 13% of the population makes up 18% of their profit margin so they throw us a bone. Mc Donalds earns 29 billion a year 18% black dollars 5.2billion annually that works out to 433 million per month. Any company that looses 433 million in one month wont go unnoticed, but why Mc Donalds, whats the cause? Plainly put, practice, a dry- run of sorts to re learn how to unite as a unit behind a given cause. To flex our economic muscle and learn effective strategies to garner respect and be taken seriously as a defined united group.
     This isn't designed to topple Mc Donalds or change the diets of black people. Its only to highlight small sacrifices we all need to make to get the wheels of change turning again. Without sacrifice change is hard to come by in any circumstance, and no Mc Donalds for a month would definitely be a small sacrifice in relation to the statement it sends. This might not change perception overnight, but it would mold our reality, back into the form of a people with power, and a voice, with a realistic chance to respectfully navigate our own course, as we all effectively become the new leaders of our own community. We use Social Media for everything else, why not this.

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