Made In The U.S.A.

Buying is beautiful.

In Adventures on March 11, 2009 at 12:21 am

It would appear that I’m not the only person spending a year with a shopping agenda. The Anderson family, from Chicago, is joining me in their own version of my quest. While mine is to buy American, theirs is to buy black.

Many thanks to Elon for bringing their story to my attention.

They have a publicist and a web site and scientific data and all sorts of reasons why they should do what they do. I just have a feeling. But I think we’re reading from the same page. Even if they’re going to be called racists for doing it.

“More than anything, this is a learning thing,” said Maggie Anderson… “We know it’s controversial, and we knew that coming in.” One anonymous letter mailed to their home accused the Andersons of “unabashed, virulent racism. Because of you,” the writer stated, “we will totally avoid black suppliers. Because of you, we will dodge every which way to avoid hiring black employees.”

That’s just a racist looking for a reason.

It makes me sad that the letter writer can’t distinguish help for one group from hurt for another.

My plan might not be controversial, but it’s really no different than Mrs. Anderson’s. We’re both just buying a little bit closer to home in hopes of helping others, and ourselves, in the process. There’s no “anti” anyone else expressed or implied. It’s simply supporting a community–whether that community is a country, a state, a city, a neighborhood, a block or a neighbor. And even if that community isn’t drawn by geographic boundaries. 

The worst part for both of us? Summed up by the economics expert in the LA Times story:

It probably will be futile in achieving anything meaningful in the black economy.

Yep. It probably will. 

But should they not do it? Hell no.

They’ll know they tried. They’ll feel better for it too. And things will be better, even if not by a statistically measurable amount.

It will also, hopefully, change them for the better. Even if it doesn’t entirely change the black economy.

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