5 steps to giving reparations to your family without government help - Dr Boyce Watkins
by Dr Boyce Watkins
The fight over reparations is one that has taken center stage in the 2020 election. I support any measures or conversations in this direction and I certainly hope that our typically lost and messy politicians suddenly gain the political will to put together a reparations package that makes sense.
OK, let me be honest for a second. I don't have much faith in racist white people to save my community, even if they happen to be Democrats. The fact is that there is no data to support the idea that black wealth has increased as a direct result of action by either political party.
So, call me cynical, but I don't see much evidence that the powers that be are going to come around anytime soon and even if they do, the package will likely be only a fraction of $15 trillion or more that black people are owed.
So, I thought that, since finance is my thing, I would provide a secondary solution for anyone who doesn't want to wait for the government, white people or Jesus himself to provide reparations for their family. There are some basic things you can do in this generation to practically guarantee that your children and grandchildren are in good financial shape.
Here's how you and your family can get reparations without government help:
1) Invest $150 a month into the stock market for a generation. The key difference in wealth between the rich and middle class is defined almost entirely by whether you are invested in the stock market. Even people born poor who've invested the same amount in stocks that most of us spend on fast food are now financially secure, liquid and leaving wealth to their children. Starting poor doesn't mean you have to stay there, you actually do have a choice.
2) Buy some rental property - it may take time to save for a down payment, but if you take a small real estate course, they can teach you about some amazing options. Paying rent doesn't make you rich, it makes your landlord rich. Jullien Gordon, a Stanford University educated real estate expert in The Black Business School who controls millions in property, has an excellent program that teaches students how to buy rental property.
3) Start a family business and learn entrepreneurship. Families in our community must learn to create our own jobs, and entrepreneurship not only provides freedom, it provides ownership and amazing earning potential. I've seen people go from average incomes to earning $80,000 a month with a good, well-executed business idea. Most people can't earn that much on a job without being a professional athlete.
5) Get life insurance - This will leave additional assets to your children. This is one of the easiest wealth transfers imaginable. Those without life insurance or wills give much of their wealth away to strangers. Don't do this to your family. The Black Insurance Network has some excellent options you may want to consider.
It may take a generation to do so, but if you follow this basic plan, your kids and grandkids should be in good financial shape. If you make good decisions now, your family doesn't have to remain in the struggle forever. Reparations provided by others are owed and can be beneficial. But without a cultural commitment to economic intelligence, this money will slip right through our hands.
Be smart for your family. Choose investing and ownership as a fundamental part of your black culture. We must do so for our very economic, social and political survival.
Dr Boyce Watkins is a Finance PhD who has taught at several institutions, including Syracuse University, The University of Kentucky, and The Ohio State University. He has written several books, and appeared on a wide range of media outlets, including CBS, NBC, Good Morning America and much, much more. To learn more, please visit TheBlackBusinessSchool.com. You can also join the Dr Boyce Watkins Stock Market Investing program by visiting TheBlackStockMarketProgram.com.