“Many on the Left imply that President Trump’s initiative is just about pandering to black Americans; however, I see his plan as a roadmap to prosperity and fairness.”
am a black woman, who was one of eleven children and one of thirteen people sharing a single bathroom while growing up. I am from the first generation of my family to graduate from college. From my perspective, the protests around the country—on the surface—are about justice, but the real, root cause is economic freedom. One is never free unless he or she is economically free.
President Trump’s “Platinum Plan,” which was unveiled at the end of last month at the Black Economic Empowerment Conference in Atlanta, is a powerful step towards erasing the economic disparity gap between the black community and other Americans. Many on the Left imply that President Trump’s initiative is just about pandering to black Americans; however, I see his plan as a roadmap to prosperity and fairness.
On top of what President Trump accomplished in his first term for black America (lowest black and brown unemployment recorded, job growth, criminal justice reform, historically black colleges and universities (HBCU) funding, and opportunity zones), this plan emphasizes this President’s continued commitment to helping the black community, despite our lack of electoral support for his candidacy.
Black business owners literally watched their years of hard work and financial independence go up in flames.
The President’s plan is aggressive, thoughtful, and impressive. It includes social issues such as making Juneteenth a national holiday, continuing criminal justice reform (which is far more than the Obama administration ever accomplished), designating the Ku Klux Klan and Antifa as terrorist organizations, and making lynching a national hate crime. These portions of the plan address many issues black Americans have been highlighting for decades, with little to no progress being made until President Trump entered the Oval Office.
Opportunity and Prosperity
In my view, the most impressive aspects of the plan involve President Trump’s promise of economic empowerment to the black community. This falls under both his opportunity and prosperity pillars. He pledges $500 billion of capital investment for the black community. He also calls for 500,000 new black businesses, which will be accomplished through opportunity zones and small business lending. He is the first president in decades to realize that business and home ownership empowers, raises health and quality of life, improves self-esteem, builds confidence, and leads to hope.
That is not all. He is committing to three million jobs for black America. He is meeting quarterly with executives at lending institutions to look for ways to increase home ownership for black Americans. Furthermore, he is looking to expand financial literacy programs, apprenticeships, and job training programs. He is partnering with local leaders in minority communities to ensure that they have access to federal support for the revitalization of their neighborhoods.
Imagine a president who understands how important a strong credit score is to economic security. For those who have never struggled in this area, most people in underserved communities—dealing with joblessness, crime, high homicide and high school drop- out rates, crumbling family structures, etc.—typically have a credit score in the 500s. Given that some businesses even require credit checks for potential employees, good credit can drastically improve one’s quality of life and provide a range of other options (car, apartment, school, etc.). This is a vital step towards decreasing the economic disparity gap between blacks and other Americans.
President Trump’s focus on law and order is a key part of his commitment to security, both economically and physically. The violence and riots of this past summer have impacted the black community disproportionately. Businesses have been demolished and—along with them—financial stability. Black business owners literally watched their years of hard work and financial independence go up in flames. A large majority of the black community does not support defunding the police, and President Trump understands this.
President Trump, all the while, is extending an olive branch to minority communities. He is creating a more level playing field and offering a seat at the table. He wants there to be ample access to education, and his administration is creating pathways that offer bright futures for our families. This includes safer neighborhoods in which to raise our families and access to better jobs, with benefits. Home ownership is now an option. A chance to be one’s own boss is on the table.
This is what many on the Left do not understand. Black and brown America voters now have a viable alternative to the Democratic party. We have been taken for granted (mostly by the Democrats) and settling for economic scraps for years. All around the country, we are waking up. Why do I, personally, find the President’s economic empowerment plan for black America so inspiring? It is because President Trump is aggressively using all of the tools in his administration to close the economic disparity gap from which black America has long suffered.
Victoria Lynch is the author of Trump Wins in 2020: (With the Popular Vote).