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Home Current Events Black Businesses Are Being Destroyed In Riots: Never Again

Black Businesses Are Being Destroyed In Riots: Never Again

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Photo: Alyssa Pointer, AJC/TNS

If riots are the voice of the unheard, the destruction of Black owned businesses during said riots is simply noise. Over the weekend, reports around the country began surfacing that Black owned businesses were being destroyed during disturbances. Some reported that whites were infiltrating protests and targeting Black owned businesses. Others saw these incidents simply as frustrated rioters who were simply indiscriminate in their destruction. Either way, Black businesses who are already struggling to get by, have a road to travel that is much longer. As a community, this cannot stand: our businesses must be regarded as sacred.

Smokes N’ Things is a premium vape and tobacco shop located in the North Philadelphia neighborhood, in Philly. Elliott Broaster is the owner, a 23-year-old serial entrepreneur, according to his IG page. Broaster launched the company as a 22-year-old student and on Sunday, it was broken into, vandalized and looted. Broaster, on his IG page, expressed his frustrations and utter hurt. Broaster, unfortunately, was not alone. Across the country, Black business owners experienced similar things. Black restaurants, shoe stores and other shops had their windows broken, were looted and vandalized. While the ultimate origins of the destruction aren’t necessarily clear, it is evident that too many young people aren’t in touch with the value of Black businesses and their sacredness.

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Our hearts are broken to find out that one of the few black owned businesses in downtown Chicago @kilwinschicago ( the only black owned Kilwins in corporate ) was damaged from last night. We understand the frustration and pain of #georgefloyd death. You can protest but please do not damage our businesses. We work hard so you all can support black restaurants everyday. If your not sure on where these businesses are you can use our website for any city. On today, Everyone go support their location in Hyde park during this time. Protest peacefully and do not damage black owned businesses. We need each other . This is the time to support blAck owned business not damage them. Here are some words directly from the owner . . I am tired & speechless. I have been up all night waiting to get a board up. After waiting over 8 hours nobody will touch it because it’s an historical building. They can’t damage any of the brass. I don’t know what to do! I have avoided posting but now I feel helpless & blessed! I need some assistance fast. I am drained. 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽 I took a walk around the corner and was blown away. I have so much emotion and can’t believe how our beautiful City has been destroyed! I will be fine. I just want to go home. I thank God for my health & this too shall pass! You can help us by doing business at our Hyde Park Location. This is not a go fund me; this is a go support me in the near future. Thanks for all of you love and support!!! . . Hyde park located at 5526 S. Harper in Chicago ,IL

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Black owned businesses are the primary employers of Black people and the economic engine of the community. When protestors are arrested, it’s Black entrepreneurs that bail them out. When a family is struggling to pay for funeral expenses, Black entrepreneurs very often step up to meet the need. Scholarship programs, sponsoring youth sports teams, providing that first job and catering that community event, all of it is the work of Black entrepreneurs. To destroy Black businesses is to destroy our future, our promise and our hope. To destroy Black businesses is to destroy ourselves. Black businesses are sacred: hands off.

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D'Juan Hopewell
I care about Black Power. Period. Currently working on creating jobs and funding new startups on the South Side of Chicago and writing here and there at HopewellThought.com. Follow me @HopewellThought.
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