1. Ten Black Warren Buffett’s, ten Black billionaires. All I’d add here is that I’d want them to be socially and culturally conscious, with a desire to use their wealth for the benefit of the world Afrikan community.
2. Another Malcolm X. Yup. I cosign this one wholeheartedly.
3. A good, solid educational system. As a culturally responsive educator I might have to put this one first. Education is the greatest social tool there is, and has historically been the key to building Black wealth, increased Black political involvement and enfranchisement, better Black health, and stronger Black families. Our k-12 educational system, as currently constructed, is economically, socially, and politically assasinating generations of Black people. It is murdering our aspirations, our potential, and our ability to think creatively and critically. But perhaps most importantly, it is wrongly misleading us to equate “schooling” with “education”, so much so that we think successful Black students have “sold out” or are “acting White”, and that education has no liberating implications.
4. A 20-year period, or generation, of empowered and intelligent Black athletes. How much better off would the current generation of Black boys be if Kobe Bryant was more like Tommie Smith, if LeBron James was more like Bill Russell, if Terrell Owens was more like Jim Brown, and if Jordan was Jordan on the court, but morphed into Muhammad Ali off of it?
5. A good prison system. Prison is indeed the new slavery. In fact, it’s not even new. The U.S. Constitution explicitly states in the 13th Amendment (which outlawed chattel slavery) that Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction. When you have a prison system that is for-profit, and consistently finds a way to predominantly and discriminately lock up Black men, then a form of slavery most definitely exists.
This list is adapted from Dr. Boyce Watkins, a finance professor at Syracuse University.