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"I do not expect the white media to create a positive black-male image." -
Huey P. Newton
The NorthStar News & Analysis -
March 8, 2011
Growth Of Black-Owned Businesses Surged From 2002 To 2007
Study's Cutoff, However, Was The Month The Recession Began
The number of black-owned businesses dramatically grew from 2002 to 2007, but the overwhelming number of the companies did not have any paid employees, reports the U.S. Census Bureau.
African-American owned businesses grew by 60.5 percent to 1.9 million from 2002 to 2007, according to the United States Census Bureau's Survey of Business Owners.
The growth rate of black-owned companies was more than triple the national rate of 18 percent during the period, the bureau reported. From 2002 to 2007, receipts generated by black-owned businesses increased 55.1 percent to $137.5 billion.
"Black-owned businesses continued to be one of the fastest-growing segments of our economy, showing rapid growth in both the number of businesses and total sales during the time period," said Thomas Mesenbourg, deputy director of the Census Bureau.
The report, however, does not address how the recession, which started in December 2007, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research, affected black-owned businesses. The Census Bureau research was concluding as the recession was beginning.
The Survey of Business Owners, which is taken every five years as part of the economic census, defines black-owned companies as firms in which African-Americans own 51 percent or more of the equity, interest or stock of the business.
Of the 1.9 million black-owned businesses in 2007, 106,824 had paid employees, up 13 percent from 2002. These companies employed 921,032 workers, an increase of 22.2 percent. Their payrolls totaled $23.9 billion, an increase of 36.3 percent, according to the Census Bureau.
In 2007, 1.8 million black-owned companies did not employ any workers, an increase of 64.5 percent from 2002. The non-employer business receipts, however, totaled 38.6 billion, up 69 percent.
The number of black-owned businesses with receipts of $1 million or more increased by 34.5 percent to 14,507 between 2002 and 2007, the bureau reported.
The nation's largest cities were homes to the majority of black-owned companies. New York boasted the most with 154,929 or 8.1 percent of the nation's total African-American companies. Chicago was second with 58,631, or 3.1 percent of the firms, followed by Houston with 33,062 or 1.7 percent of black-owned companies. Houston edged out Detroit, with 32,490 or 1.7 percent of African-American businesses.
New York State was home to the largest number of black-owned companies, with 204,032 firms. New York was followed by Georgia, which had 183,874 companies and Florida, which had 181,437 black-owned businesses.
Among counties, Cook County, IL, which includes Chicago, had the most black-owned businesses, with 83,733. Los Angeles County was second with 59,680 companies and Kings County, N.Y., had 52,705 businesses.
In 2007, nearly four in 10 black-owned businesses operates in the health card and social assistance, repair, maintenance, personal and laundry services sectors. Health care, retail and social assistance sectors accounted for 27.4 percent of black-owned business revenue.
T-shirt's message reflects the times and the anger
Jobless Rate For Black Men Was 16.2 Percent In February
Jobless Rate Increases For African-American Women
2.74 million Blacks Were Unemployed In February
The nation’s overall unemployment rate fell in February. It also dropped for black men, but the jobless rate for African-American men 20 years old and older is much higher than for any other adult worker group despite new jobs being added to the economy
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday reported that the nation’s overall jobless rate was 8.9 percent, reflecting an increase of 192,000 non-farm payroll jobs in February.
“Job gains occurred in manufacturing, construction, professional and business services, health care, transportation and housing,” bureau officials reported.
Unemployment, however, remained high on a seasonally adjusted basis among the major worker groups, which included white women, white men, Hispanic men and women and African American men and women. The jobless rate for Asians on a non-seasonally adjusted basis was 6.8 percent.
Among black men, the unemployment rate was overwhelmingly high last month, although it dropped on a seasonally adjusted basis compared with February 2010.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the jobless rate for black men was 16.2 percent in February compared with 17.8 percent for the same month last year. The actual number of black men who were unemployed and who applied for unemployment compensation in February was 1.31 million compared with 1.42 million in February 2010, reported the bureau.
The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for black men was 17.5 percent in February compared with 19.1 percent in February 2010. On a not seasonally basis, 1.41 million black men were unemployed last month compared with 1.52 million black men who were jobless and looking for work in February 2010.
The high unemployment rate among black men is one reason the jobless rate remains so high among black adults. Last month’s overall unemployment rate for black men and black women on a seasonally adjusted basis was 15.3 percent compared with 15.8 percent in February 2010.
The total number of black men and women who were unemployed on a seasonally adjusted basis last month was 2.74 million compared with 2.81 million for the same month last year.
While the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in February declined for black men, the jobless rate for black women 20 years old and older increased. February’s unemployment rate for black women was 13 percent compared with 12.1 percent for the same month last year.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 1.19 million black women were unemployed last month compared with 1.10 million who were unemployed in February 2010.
The unemployment rate for black teenagers 16 to 19 years old is abysmally high. The seasonally adjusted jobless rate for black teenagers was 38.4 percent in February compared with 41.8 percent compared with same month last year.
Michigan's Black-Business Owners Organize State Chamber Of Commerce
Michigan’s black-business owners have organized the Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce, the first state-wide organization whose key role is to nurture African-American owned companies so they can create jobs.
“The Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce will aggressively advocate for the economic gardening, growth and capacity building of Michigan’s black-owned businesses,” said Ken Harris, the chamber’s president and CEO.
The chamber will provide quality resources, benefits, services and access needed to help stimulate economic viability throughout the state. “Our efforts will nurture an environment of economic parity, helping black businesses to expand and create jobs, jobs, jobs in the community,” Harris said.
In addition, the chamber will survey the state’s black businesses and report its findings at the Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce's State of Black Business Convention June 23, 2011. As of 2007, there were 32,490 black-owned businesses in Michigan, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
The chamber also intends to open chapters in Detroit, Lansing, Flint, Grand Rapids, Southfield, Oak Park, Pontiac, Ann Arbor, Benton Harbor, Kalamazoo, Ypsilanti, Birmingham, Battle Creek, Idle Wild, Royal Oak and Muskegon.
Judge Craig Strong, who sits on Wayne County, Mich., 3rd District Court, recently swore in the chamber’s 20-member board of directors.
The chamber’s creation is the culmination of efforts by a network by the African American Business Alliance. Last year, the alliance refocused its advocacy efforts on establishing a statewide business organization.
The Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce is an affiliate of the U.S. Black Chamber of Commerce, which is based in Washington, D.C. The Michigan Black Chamber’s website is
. The website, however, was not active as of Saturday.
Jackie Robinson as a member
of the Montreal Royals
Plaque Honors Jackie Robinson's Time In Montreal
American and Canadian officials on Feb. 28 unveiled a plaque at the Montreal home, where Jackie Robinson lived during the summer of 1946 as he prepared to enter Major League Baseball and break the sport’s color barrier.
Officials placed a gold-colored plaque at the front door of the duplex apartment building at 8232 de Gaspe Ave.
Jackie Robinson Plaque
The plaque, printed in English and French, reads: “Hall of Fame baseball legend and civil rights leader Jack Roosevelt “Jackie” Robinson and wife, Rachel, lived in this house when he played with Montreal Royals in the Class AAA International League in 1946. The first black Major League Baseball player in the modern era, Robinson became a powerful symbol of hope and inspiration to millions with his grace, dignity and determination.” The Brooklyn Dodgers added Robinson to the team roster on April 15, 1947.
David Jacobson, U.S. ambassador to Canada, said he was there on behalf of Barack Obama, the first African-American president of the United States.
“On behalf of the president of the United States and on behalf of the American people, I want to thank the people of Montreal for what you did---not only for the Robinsons, and not only for baseball, but for all of the people of North America,” Jacobson said.
Lee McClenny, the U.S. consul-general in Montreal, read a letter from Rachel Robinson, 88, Jackie Robinson’s widow. Rachel Robinson was unable to attend the ceremony. Jackie Robinson died in 1972 from complications of heart disease and diabetes.
Robinson and his wife had been shaken by the racial hatred they experienced in the American South, and the couple did not know what to expect in Montreal, said McClenny.
“In the end, Montreal was the perfect place for Jack to get his start,” Rachel Robinson wrote. “We never had a threatening or unpleasant experience there; the people were so welcoming and saw Jack as a player and more importantly as a man.”
In Montreal, women gave Mrs. Robinson food ration coupons and help her sew maternity clothes. Neighborhood children would help her carry groceries home, she said.
Officials cordoned off the street and unveiled the plaque to coincide with black history month.
William "The Refrigerator" Perry
Suicide Spotlights Troubles Of Another Former Member Of The Chicago Bears
Dave Duerson’s recent suicide also shines the spotlight on the troubles faced by one of his former Chicago Bears' teammates.
William “The Refrigerator” Perry’s popularity peaked when he burst through the line to score a touchdown on a one-yard run in Super Bowl XX. The Bears won the game in 1985, defeating the New England Patriots 46 to 10.
After that Perry’s career sank, his weight ballooned and his physical ailments became more apparent. The 48-year-old Perry pro football career ended in 1994. Physicians later diagnosed Perry with Guillain-Barre syndrome, a central nervous system disorder that causes progressive paralysis, according to an article published in March 4 edition of
, a weekly newsmagazine.
The former Chicago Bears player, who now weighs 400 pounds, can barely walk. He, however, drives himself to the liquor store. He is known to drink two-to-three cases of beer in a single sitting. Perry admits he’s an alcoholic. He also suffers from diabetes and high blood pressure but often forgets to take his medicine.
Duerson, who played safety for the 1985 Bears, was found dead February 17 of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest.
His family said Duerson has sent text messages asking that his brain be examined for chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a disorder that leads to depression, dementia and suicide. Duerson’s brain has been donated to the Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy at Boston University School of Medicine.
Legislation Introduced In Texas Regarding Eyewitness Testimony
Texas legislators have introduced bills that would set standards for eyewitness identification and require the recording of police interrogations, reports The Innocence Project of Texas (IPOT) in its March newsletter.
Eyewitness misidentification is the leading cause of false convictions. In Texas, about 80 percent of DNA exonerations come from cases involving faulty eyewitness testimony, the IPOT reports. Texas House Bill 215 would require police departments to create written policies for eyewitnesses identification procedures that conform to the best practices designed to prevent misidentification.
The family of Tim Cole, who died in prison in 1999 before his innocence could be proved, met with Texas Gov. Rick Perry to discuss House Bill 215. A jury convicted Cole of rape after a student identified him as a rapist. The identification turned out to be false, but by that time Cole had died (
The NorthStar News & Analysis, March 7, 2010
Texas leads the nation in wrongful convictions. Thirty-eight inmates have had their convictions overturned, according to The Justice Project, which is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to improving the fairness and accuracy of the criminal justice system. The organization is based in Washington, D.C.
Another bill introduced in the Texas legislature would require that police record interrogations for serious violent crimes. House Bill 219 would preserve the validity of true confessions, creating a record of interrogation room procedures, said IPOT.
Charlie Parker (see story below)
This Week In Black History
Week of March 12
1773 – This is the most probable date when black explorer Jean Baptiste Pointe de Sable begins building the settlement which would eventually become the city of Chicago, Illinois. The Haitian-born (c 1745) de Sable would overtime become a man of considerable wealth. He owned commercial buildings, docks, trading posts and a mansion. De Sable was the son of a French man and an African woman. He died August 19, 1818.
1791 – Pierre Charles L’Enfant is commissioned to design and layout the nation’s capital city – Washington, D.C. A dispute with President George Washington, however, forces his departure the following year. Thus, the final design and layout fell to black inventor and mathematician Benjamin Banneker. Although two white men were nominally in charge of the project, historical records show that it was Banneker’s mathematical skills and his memory of L’Enfant’s plans that enabled the project to be completed.
1955 – One of the chief founders of modern jazz, Charlie “Yardbird” Parker, dies on this day in New York City. Parker is widely considered “the greatest jazz saxophonist of all time.” His death at 35 was reportedly the result of pneumonia exacerbated by drug and alcohol abuse.
1964 – Malcolm X formally separates from the Elijah Muhammad-led Nation of Islam although his initial statement of resignation was given on March 8th. The separation was triggered by growing differences over Islam and the proper role of religion in the black liberation struggle as well as by Malcolm’s objections to Elijah Muhammad’s infidelities. Less than a year later, Malcolm was assassinated by men allegedly connected with a Nation of Islam mosque in New Jersey.
This Week in Black History is compiled for the
NorthStar News & Analysis
by Robert Taylor of Taylor Media Services (202) 549-6872 or Taylor Media Services @ Yahoo.com
The Rev. Peter Gomes
Rev. Peter Gomes
The Rev. Peter Gomes, Harvard University chaplain for three and half decades, died Feb. 28 from complications of a stroke that occurred in December. Rev. Gomes was 68.
He was the first black minister of Harvard’s Memorial Church and the first pastor of that church to participate in a U. S. president's inauguration. Rev. Gomes also was the only openly gay, black, Republican, Baptist preacher.
Rev. Gomes prayed at President Ronald Reagan’s second inaugural, and he preached at the inaugurations of President George H. W. Bush and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick. Gnomes was Plummer Professor of Christian Morals and Pusey Minister in the Memorial Church.
Rev. Gomes authored may popular books, including
The Good Life: Truths That Last In Times of Need
The Good Book: Reading the Bible With Mind and Heart
He was born May 22, 1942, in Plymouth, Mass.
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