Corporations Hyping BLM Fail Us in Every Other Way
If Apple and Nike actually cared, they would focus on creating jobs in struggling American black communities. But they don't.
Over the past weeks, we have been endlessly inundated with the same three words: “Black Lives Matter.” We hear them every day, on every media platform. Those words are spray-painted on buildings, streets and monuments across the country. We’ve also witnessed a parade of elite corporations vocally and financially supporting the Black Lives Matter movement.
Their rhetoric is lofty and touching, but contradicted by their actions. As Johnny Burtka, the Executive Director of The American Conservative, pointed out on the Tucker Carlson Show: these companies have not lifted a finger to actually help or create jobs for the people they claim to support.
Apple has achieved great financial success by exporting jobs to foreign lands. They are happy to use foreign laborers working in substandard conditions for substandard salaries to maintain their massive profit margin. According to recent reports, workers at Apple’s suppliers in China are literally enslaved.
Apple has stashed hundreds of billions of dollars outside of our country to avoid paying taxes. None of those dollars are creating meaningful jobs for Americans or bringing “critical resources and technology to underserved school systems” in America that Apple claims to care about.
While the company talks about “creating a better, more just world for everyone,” we do not see any Apple assembly plants in the black neighborhoods in Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, St. Louis or my home town of Cleveland, Ohio. A job is by far the best social program. So which black lives are Apple’s actions actually supporting?
What about Nike, whose profits depend heavily on consumers from the black community? Watchtowers, barbed-wire fences and police guard boxes surround a factory in eastern China that manufactures shoes for Nike. The imprisoned workers, reportedly members of the Uighur Muslim ethnic minority, are under constant surveillance and prohibited from practicing their religion.
Meanwhile, we don’t see any Nike factories in black neighborhoods in America providing desperately needed jobs. As part of its marketing program to keep black people purchasing its foreign-made products, Nike does give money to black sports and media stars. But that does nothing to create the jobs ordinary black Americans need.
These are just two prominent examples in a long list of multinational corporations that profit from the black community but will not spend their money employing black people here in America. Drive-by shootings and other senseless acts of violence take black lives in Chicago and other major cities so frequently no one in the major media seems to notice. Large corporate sponsors of political activism don’t seem to care either, and don’t do anything to help. Instead, they give money to activists whose agenda includes peddling excuses for the rioting and looting we’ve witnessed in our urban areas. How many innocent black lives have been lost or destroyed in this burning of black communities and callous destruction of black-owned small businesses?
Supporting an organization that believes black fathers and black families don’t matter doesn’t rescue black children from poverty and failed government programs. Single black mothers have an almost insurmountable task of raising young boys to become upstanding men in their communities.
Abortion rates are another reminder of how little some black lives matter. Black women are only 13 percent of the U.S. population but black abortions account for 36 percent of all abortions in the country. The CEOs in the executive suites are silent on the subject.
Those “socially responsible businesses” who back activists calling to abolish the police would doom high crime neighborhoods, which are too often our neighborhoods, to even greater levels of violence and death. Black lives will matter less in police-free cities.
American corporate elites’ support for made-for-TV activists is the worst form of tokenism. They hope that by simply telling us black lives matter, they can distract from their failure to support black jobs, black families and black neighborhoods. Look at what they do, not what they say.
Darrell C. Scott is a Co-Founder and Senior Pastor for the New Spirit Revival Center in Cleveland Heights, OH, and CEO of National Diversity Coalition for Trump and the Urban Revitalization Coalition.