So I had a conversation about opening an account at One United Bank,
which has been said to be the largest black owned bank in the country. For some time, I had been looking for a black bank to open an account with and I heard Charlamagne (from The Breakfast Club) and Angela Rye (Political Commentator, etc.) discussing this one day on The Breakfast Club on Power 105.1. Killer Mike was also referenced because the initiative became a movement to #bankblack. m
I had a very smooth process opening the account online and got an ATM card with a black person holding up a fist on it, so I was all in! I was so excited by my account and the initiative and I didn’t even think about the fact that there were reviews. I got my direct deposit set up because it was free with direct deposit and I was set.
Yesterday I was telling a friend about it and the first thing she said to me was that it had horrible reviews that made her think twice about opening the account. Here is where my concern came from. I have been working in banking since March of 2007, right on the cusp of The Great Recession. It seems as though everyone HAS a bank account but hates banks, almost as though we have no other options. The problem is we know these commercial banks are awful and discriminate and take part in redlining and other illegal activity against non-wealthy people yet we are never concerned about that. I Googled the reviews for One United and it said stuff like “Customer Service was awful” and “My debit card was late” and I also looked up JP Morgan Chase and the first thing I saw was the class action suits filed against the bank. Personally, I’d rather bank with someone who was a little late on a debit card as opposed to someone who lost a suit because they were doing something illegal but that’s just me.
Which brings me to my point.
Why are we so quick to judge each other, but not the very people who we consider to be oppressing us? Why is it that we will not spend money with our own people but purchase things from individuals who publicly say they don’t want Black people wearing or owning their products? Why do we ask for discounts from Black entrepreneurs trying to build themselves up but would never do that with non-black business owners? Why would we complain about a $8 book with a black child’s face on it, but happily spend $300 on a belt?
There are so many examples of US not trusting US, but I just want to know WHY? I’m curious to know what the thought process is. Why do we cry #blackexcellence and say “Financial Freedom’s our only hope”, yet we do nothing to make this happen? I remember seeing a flyer that discussed “boycotting Black Friday” and I have asked before and I will ask again, why would we boycott Black Friday as opposed to shopping in our own communities? Why would we continue to bank where we are mistreated? WHY DO WE CONTINUE ASKING FOR JUSTICE FROM PEOPLE WHO EVIDENTLY DO NOT WANT TO TREAT US WITH RESPECT?
Click here to see the most informative, raw video about the truth on Police Brutality and you tell me if we should be asking for justice or equality. I’ll wait….
Okay, so now that you have watched that, please understand that even white people who have the best intentions benefit from white privilege. The bubble of white privilege allows people to look at people of color and say that slavery is over and that Black people need to get over it, especially because we were not actually slaves. But they will not look at the death, discrimination and the blatant disrespect. No one talks about the 13th Amendment and how all it did was change the word from “slave” to “inmate” (cuz why did jail verbiage have to be included in the abolishment of slavery in the first place? Why couldn’t they just have the freeing of the slaves in the amendment and if they felt so strongly add a separate one for being convicted of a crime?)
But back to my original thought.
I would like to focus on acknowledging what makes us value white society as opposed to black society, even though we realize things such as #blackexcellence, #blackgirlmagic & #melaninpoppin. Why do we research black banks, but open banks accounts for others simply because they have a table outside the gym? How many of us would complain about a Black woman selling a bag for $300 but use tax money they get for Earned Income Credit or Child Care to purchase a bag for double (or triple) that price from Louis Vuitton?