5 Reasons Why Black People Are Still Broke

5 Reasons Why Black People Are Still Broke

Change needs to come.

According to statistics from The State of Working America, African Americans made up about 12 percent of the population in the United States in 2015. With that being said, African Americans are also among the poorest races with 27.5 percent of them living in poverty. What's even more disturbing is that 45.6 percent of children aged 6 and under live in poverty.

Essentially every other black kindergarten student is living in a home where the income is below what the government sees as necessary to live. Unfortunately, this trend continues for generations of black people and I believe that I know five important reasons as to why this race is so impoverished.

1. Black people spend more money than they make.

African Americans over the age of 18 make up 39 percent of Master Card holders. Of that 39 percent, many spend their limit monthly and seldom have the money to pay the balance in full at the end of the month. Essentially black people are spending money that they don't have and won't have at the end of the month. This trend of building never ending debt is partially why their poverty numbers are so high.

2. Black people don't support black businesses.

Every race with the exception of black people seems to support the businesses of their own. Being an entrepreneur is one of the most popular ways to make high residual income. Black people buy products from brands such as Jordan, Louis Vuitton, and Ralph Lauren at an alarming rate. The prices of these brands are very expensive, however, those same black people would cringe at the thought of paying $20 for a black owned clothing product saying, "It's too expensive." The question here would be is the product too expensive or not "renowned enough?"

3. Black people don't save their money.

As soon as black people get a huge chunk of money or their tax refund it appears that they all flock to the nearest high-end fashion spot to splurge. Seldom do black people save their funds or invest them into things that will last or that could make them more money down the line. According to The State of Working America, black people spend 4 percent more money annually than any other race despite the fact that they are the least represented race and the race that lives in poverty at the highest rate. There's a clear problem, so read that sentence again and let it marinate.

4. Black people don't know how to invest.

If you ask many black people aged 18-25 it should not come as a surprise that investing in stocks or buying bonds is a foreign concept. Many young black people work and spend their money on items that either decrease in value after being bought or are not sustainable. Cars and sneakers are prime examples of such things.

5. Black people aren't working towards getting out of poverty.

Even after reading this article there are many black people that will not work towards changing their situation. After centuries of slavery, black people must realize that they are behind with regards to having generational wealth. Black people must fight to create the wealth where they will have trust funds for their children or wealth that can be passed down. Too many black people tend to only worry about themselves and the money that they have in the moment. As a race, black people need to build for the future and get out of that mindset of the now.

Wealth is not everything, however, it has been proven that with it, you get better educational opportunities and a better environment for children to develop and go on to become well-functioning members of society. There are the Jay Z's and P. Diddy's of the world but they are far and few in comparison with how most black people live. Change needs to come, black people, this is something we have control over so no more excuses.

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7 Easy Ways You Can Become The Best Version Of A Minimalist

...Because we all have too much stuff.

Minimalism. For some, it’s a lifestyle fad, but for others, it’s a vital tool in living a happy and healthy life. Minimalism is generally defined as the practice of living with less material items than the average person but it’s not limited to just that. Some people believe that in order to be minimalist you can’t have a traditional job, a car, or furniture.

It doesn’t have to be that extreme if you don’t want it to be. The benefits of living life with less are virtually endless. Spending less money, being able to live in a smaller space, and being able to clean your space easier are just a few reasons from Becoming Minimalist. If this is something that might be beneficial to you, take small steps. Here are seven ways how.

1. Toss extras.

You don’t need 5 white shirts or 17 shot glasses. Donate, sell, or give away extras of anything you own.

2. Don't keep a junk drawer.

Or a junk counter or container. Throw away all that mail and all those catalogs that you’re never going to look at. Everything else can be put in a more appropriate place.

3. Keep grocery hauls small.

And before you go, inventory what you do and don’t need and throw away anything that’s gone bad. When you get to shopping, only buy what you know you can finish without it spoiling.

4. Tackle your closet.

Most of us don’t wear a fraction of our closet or even know what’s in it! Toss useless clothing items that are too small or big, that you don’t wear, or that have sentimental value but no practical value.

5. Don't buy spontaneously.

We’re all guilty of going to the store for milk and coming out with a full cart. Or going to the mall for one product and coming out with 4 bags. Overcome the temptation to get more stuff and think about purchases at least 24 hours before making them.

6. Don't collect things.

It can be fun to have a mug from every city you’ve ever been to, but you can’t possibly NEED 103 mugs. You just don’t. Pick 5 you’re absolutely in love with and donate the rest.

7. One in, one out.

If you simply must buy that new whatever put the very popular one in, one out rule to use. For every item you add to your home, one must go. New sweater? Goodbye book with dust on it that you haven’t opened since you read it 4 years ago.

Cover Image Credit: Burak Kepapci

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6 Times That You Should Be Nicer To Retail Workers Than You Actually Are

We get it — we're frustrated with you, too.

I'm sure, like me, many of you received lots of gift cards over the holidays. After working retail seasonally, here are a few tips that I learned in order to make the employees at your favorite store just a little happier and not want to charge you extra on your purchase for being awful. Here are some times when you should be nicer to retail workers than you actually are!

1. When they go out of their way to help you.

Believe it or not, retail workers have more to do than just help customers. They have to fold tables, scan things into inventory, clean up sections, make sure everything is in the right place in the store, manage returns...you get the picture. So be grateful when an employee asks you if you need help finding anything, and really be grateful if they actually help you find it!

2. When they are cleaning up a section of the store.

Yes, they know the store is a mess. Yes, they are trying to work on it. No, they don't want you to complain about it. It's a never-ending job, and they are doing their best!

3. When they deal with your children being heathens.

There is nothing more irritating than screaming children tearing up and down aisles and knocking things off of shelves and racks, so please, be grateful that retail workers don't lose their minds over it, and don't complain to them that the store is a mess!

4. When they listen intently to your coupon problems.

Sorry, but I don't particularly care much if your Great Aunt Mary gave you that coupon and it's expired because your brother Charlie had a doctor's appointment and your kid Michelle had a soccer game so you couldn't make it to the store to go shopping in time. I can't do anything about it, I'm sorry about that.

5. When they ask you about opening a credit card or rewards card.

They know, not everyone wants one. It's OK. But they have to ask. You don't have to be mean about it! A simple "no, thank you" works just fine.

6. When you have to wait to get an item number or to talk to a manager.

Yes, I know you're irritated about it, but I can't help it if a tag was torn off of something and you have to wait a hot minute for someone to leave what they are doing, most likely walk across the store in search of your item, and then actually find it and bring it to me to scan. And I can't help that our register system has certain restrictions that only managers can access for what you want me to do (like take your expired coupons!).

All in all, I know some things about shopping are frustrating, but please remember, we understand too, and we have been on the other side of it. So I leave you with this lovely quote to remember the next time you are shopping:

"Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind, and the third is to be kind." — Henry James
Cover Image Credit: Chor Ip / Flickr

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