(ThyBlackMan.com) On this the fourth and middle day of Kwanzaa, we celebrate Ujamaa, Cooperative Economics. Let us strengthen our resolve to build and maintain our own stores, shops and other businesses and to profit from them together. . .
Malik Brown owns the Ebony Bookstore. For lunch, he goes to the Kingston Diner on the corner. That afternoon, the owner of the diner, Olive Wilkins, buys some beauty supplies at the beauty shop next door. Later, the beautician buys a copy of Black Enterprise magazine and Jawanza Kunjufu’s book, Black Economics at Malik’s Bookstore. .
Our community exists not only in the “real” world, but in cyberspace too. Here, sites established by African peoples throughout the Diaspora, exchange not only information, but goods and services on a global scale.
Our community is also found in the church. The Black Church has increasingly become a center for business, education and civic improvement. For example, a church in Queens, New York, has built a school, a senior citizens center, hundreds of housing units, a catering house, and many other facilities. It has sent its pastor to Congress and is a major force in the economic life of the borough and the city. It is just one of many examples of its kind.
One of the first was Abysinnia Baptist Church in Harlem, New York headed by Adam Clayton Powell. He was not only a pastor, but a Congressman, and a towering civil rights advocate. He and his congregation accomplished great things in the history of the community, the city and the nation and up until today still serves as an inspiration to us all.
And so today, on the fourth, and central, day of Kwanzaa, we joyously celebrate that which makes us a viable ongoing community, Ujamaa, Cooperative Economics! UJAMMA!