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Black American Community
Houston Disparity Study (Click left image to download)  
Texas Disparity study (Rejected)  
Texas Disparity Study 2007 - 2009 (Accepted and presented in March 2010)  
Interesting facts from the Department of Commerce  
Interesting statistics on doing business with the State of Texas  
  What do you do when things are not working with the Affirmative Action Programs? You take Affirmative Action!  
  Other articles of interest are welcome (Economic Articles Please)  

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Why make such a provocative statement? As a result of my own personal experience in dealing with CNN and being a member of the Black American Community, CNN refuses to investigate or detail much of what is happening to the Black Community. Over 90% of what was reported in both of the Black in America series is a repeat of the same old "stuff" placed in a new format. The only new information or ideas that really address the real issue in the Black Community was Tyler Perry. Mr. Perry has taken the reigns to control his destiny and provide an arena for Blacks to showcase their talents and other forms of intellectual property.

Since February, prior to the announcement of Black In America 2, I have been trying to offer a different view to CNN. CNN has refused to even consider and only offered the same old message and rewrapped it on a new package. Many people were looking for a solution, and some will confuse this message with a solution..

I met Mr. Reid at the Houston, TX preview airing of Black in America 2 and offered a different view. My message to Mr. Reid is detailed below.

Why single out these entities? Well, its all up to the CNN Investigative Unit as to what is selected for investigation and ultimately reported. Soledad O'Brien participated in the interviews, etc. Doesn't she have some different views? Mr. Jeffrey Reid has claimed the role of Executive Producer. Mr. Holmes corraled the crowd in Houston, and when alternate views were expressed he elected not to hear them or take any concerns back to CNN.

Even though many of the people listed above can claim their Black experience to be a part of their lives,. it seems apparent to me that none of them know what is really going on, or they simply don't care about us.



An E-Mail to Mr. Jeffrey Reid

Mr. Reid,

I met you at the preview of Black In America preview in Houston, Texas.  I approached you after the viewing and said that I thought that the program needed to send a different message.  Certainly what I witnessed in both of the Black in America programs was much of a repeat of what took place in the 80's, and if we continue down the same path we will only get the same results.  Below is my message from "the troops on the ground".  This subject is slightly covered in Black In America, and I mean very slightly.

America touts freedom, opportunity, and human rights to name a few of its highlights over many countries.  America often challenges China on human rights, however, in the elements that "prove up" human rights America is not leading.  In a capitalist system the ability to participate in the procurement process is essential.  The failure to allow a person or a group of people to participate in this process equals a denial of  the very human rights that America challenges other nations to live up to.

The Economic Disparity of Black Businesses in America has been allowed to persist for quite sometime.  I believe this is the core of what is wrong in Black America, and thus far we have failed to adequately address this problem.  In America, Black Businesses receive less than one percent of all procurement dollars.  This information is derived directly from a study produced by the Department of Commerce.  These data are further supported by information in the City of Houston Disparity Study, and the State of Texas Disparity Study.  These studies may be found at www.blackamericancommunity.com.  When looking at page 3-5 of the Houston study one can not help but notice that black businesses received .71 percent of the construction contracts, which is less that one percent of the contract dollars.  Also, if you look further at the table located on page 6-20 you will see that black businesses make up approximately 16 percent of available construction contractors.  As a result of this disparity the Black Community that has 1/10 of the wealth of the majority community in America on a per capita basis, and black people have become a people that can't give hope to its own. We now have higher amounts of drug dealing and consumption, and there are many other ills that affect the Black Community today.

There is a significant difference between having a job and having a business.  A job takes care of the needs of an individual or family, but a business can empower a community.  I decided to be a business person because I wanted to be able to have a larger impact within the black community by offering more Black people opportunities within the technology field.  As a business person, I have personally witnessed some of the many tactics that are used to deny black businesses fair access to procurement opportunities.  To name a few of these tactics:  unnecessarily bundled contracts,  bait and switch, short public notices, inconsistent publishing of RFP and RFO opportunities, multi contracts below  thresholds, failure to bid, false sole source, low bid (change order to profit), slow pay, and insufficient or no bonding capacity.  

To paraphrase a statement made by Martin Luther King Jr. where he once said, Our men can't be men because they can't find jobs...  As a result of this disparity, a similar condition exists in the Black Community today.  There are no significant jobs available.  In fact, the jobs needed to attract most people in the community  have been gone for so long until many of these people have lost their work ethic. They have been reconditioned to live in an environment where work doesn't matter, and are unprepared for many jobs that are available today.

To solve our problems we must eliminate many of the illegal and/or immoral acts that undermine the ability of the Black Community to participate in the procurement process.  We must redefine our heroes from those that give us a meal or a blanket, to those people that work to ensure that we are participating in the capitalist system that serves as the foundation of America.  Black people must connect to their people much like all of the successful races in America and create jobs for those that develop via alternate channels.  Successful people are not those that buy big houses and drive a Mercedes or an Escalade.  It must be those who help advance the lives of others within their community and beyond.  The model that has been adopted by the Black Community of going to college and simply working for the majority to enhance their wealth must end. We must stop giving up our intellectual property for pennies on the dollar for jobs that look like they are guaranteed for life.  We must develop products and services that will enable us to enrich the Black Community which will in turn reward the inventor with much wealth.  This wealth could be used to fund further programs, projects, businesses, etc.  This does not put us at odds with other races of people, rather it strengthens our nation.  This alternate way of living will reduce taxes, increase our security, and make America more competitive.

If we can have a sustained decade of change, we will see progress beyond our dreams.  However, failure to change our course will persist our path of economic destruction.  For those individuals that appear black but don't think that participating in their blackness is important, let me remind them that their DNA will show that they are black.  The higher rates of cardiovascular disease, and the triple negative breast cancer rates will remind you of the blackness in your DNA.  Lets all get together to solve this problem.

Mr. Reid, CNN claims to be just a messenger in this process.  However, when the message is as incomplete or one sided as presented in Black In America, then the messenger becomes complicit in our demise.  If education was the biggest problem then Professor Gates would have never been arrested.  The most profound statement in Black In America was that a white person coming out of  prison is equal to a black person with a college degree.  The people with this mindset are the General Contractors, etc. that we must connect with everyday in this country.  The organizations that I work with, and the business people that I work with have witnessed first hand the economic disparity in America.  For these reason just to name a few, I am saying that our view deserves a proper investigation and airtime.

Please free to contact me regarding this document.  I can be at xxx-xxx-xxxx or by responding to the e-mail.