In 2004, historian John William Templeton and engineer Frederick E. Jordan Sr. founded National Black Business Month in a nationwide effort to formally recognize the contributions of the millions of Black-owned businesses in America.
We all know that small businesses are the backbone of most communities and certainly a major economic driver for our entire nation, providing goods, services, and jobs for millions of people all over the country. For many, the quest for economic freedom and their own version of the American Dream is rooted in entrepreneurship, a quality education, and access to opportunities to advance. Owning your own business is key, and supporting those businesses is essential.
During Black business month it is important to recognize how tough the pandemic has been for so many small businesses across America. Black businesses have been disproportionately hurt by the global COVID-19 pandemic. Under the Biden-Harris administration, Black business owners are facing an uneven recovery compared to their white counterparts. The pandemic has also been tough on Black women in particular. Research backs up something I have always known and seen with my own eyes: Black women are extremely entrepreneurial and more likely to start a business than white men and white women. My own mother stepped out on faith and became an entrepreneur.
Black Businesses are suffering right now because of the Biden-Harris administration’s absurd policy of paying Americans not to work. The federal government is openly working against American businesses. These so-called “extra benefits” supported by Biden and Democrats in the $1.9 trillion stimulus are to blame for labor shortages affecting employers all across America. This is especially true with Black-owned businesses.
Just look at what happened in Georgia as a case study of how Democrats’ lies about Georgia’s election law — which expanded voting opportunities — hurt Black business owners and their livelihoods. President Biden’s top economic advisor admitted the Georgia boycott was meant to hurt small businesses. Chair Of the Council of Economic Advisors Cecilia Rouse: “There’s undoubtedly going to be a cost, I think that was the point.”
The politically motivated and highly irresponsible decision to move the MLB All-Star game out of Georgia will likely “fall hardest on low-income and minority residents who work in the service sector,” with nearly 30 percent of businesses in Atlanta being Black-owned. Atlanta is over 50 percent Black while Denver is less than 10 percent Black.
In order for Black businesses to thrive, they must be protected. Consider last year when, during the height of the protests after the murder of George Floyd, we all saw the devastation of property, churches, and the looting of so many Black businesses in major cities across the country. For those that peacefully protested and would never think of destroying property, their actions were overshadowed by the rioting and looting of countless businesses, many of which were Black-owned, destroyed, never to reopen.
Vice President Kamala Harris has yet to apologize to Black business owners for supporting the bailing out of these rioters.
President Biden has failed to strongly support law enforcement and condemn the defund the police rhetoric of radical Democrats in his party. That rhetoric has turned into actual policy that has left many Black businesses open to theft and crime. Business owners, who depend on hard working police officers to ensure the safety and security of their establishments, are hurt by Biden’s crime-filled America. Polling shows that Black Americans in Detroit want more of a police presence in their communities.
The Biden-Harris administration continues to play politics with the education and futures of young Black entrepreneurs who need access to quality education to learn. An Ed Choice survey shows a majority of Black parents want school choice for their children. A national survey found that 75 percent of Black parents want the power to choose their child’s public school regardless of zip code. Quality early education is a key indicator of success and school choice gives those opportunities. Additionally, it improves the quality of the workforce that will be working in these businesses and ultimately becoming Black business owners themselves.
For Black businesses to survive and thrive we need good policies that empower their growth and prosperity. The Biden-Harris administration’s policies continue to stifle Black economic empowerment. During Black Business Month, Republican policies that support keeping our economy open, lowering taxes, eliminating bureaucratic barriers to entry, school choice, safe communities, and border security will prove to be more impactful for Black businesses.
Paris Dennard is the National Spokesperson and Director of Black Media Affairs for the Republican National Committee (RNC). Follow him on Twitter: @PARISDENNARD.