Black Money and Black Wealth, made simple

Black wealth, African American money: the future for Black America

Your Black Money: Russell Simmons Defends the RushCard to Dr. Boyce Watkins, New York Times

 

To the YourBlackWorld family:  Some of you saw my recent critique of the RushCard, the new prepaid debit card issued by Russell Simmons.  Some took my article about the RushCard and interview about the Rushcard on BBC World news and The New York Times to imply that I have serious problems with the way Russell Simmons does business.  While I do not feel that Russell, nor anyone else, is above being critiqued by the Black community, it should be made clear that I respect much of Simmons’ work, especially what he has done to reduce the severity of the drug laws that incarcerate so many Black men across America. 

I must admit that I’ve been disturbed by the recent trend of African American urban role models lending themselves out to companies such as Rent-a-Center to encourage people of color to participate in arguably one-sided financial transactions.  But I must be clear when I say that the RushCard is not necessarily a bad deal for those who need it.  My greatest challenge to President Obama is to find ways to ensure that all Americans have access to basic services, such as bank accounts, so they are not forced to pay high fees in order to access their own money.  I cannot endorse an argument which states that Russell is necessarily a philanthropist (as his ads claim) because his company provides an option that improves upon the horrific options already in place.  So, while I agree 100% that the RushCard is better than check cashing venues in the Black community, my greatest concern is that many members of the urban poor are still paying the high cost of poverty in America.  It is my hope that Russell sincerely fulfills his role as philanthropist, leader and financial enabler by genuinely working to solve critical liquidity and financial literacy problems in urban America.  I have complete faith that he can accomplish whatever he puts his mind to.

So, out of fairness to Russell, I want all of you to see his response to the New York Times piece, which is written below.  My goal is not to think for you, it’s to encourage you to think for yourself.

 Click to read.

Advertisements

April 21, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Time will tell. Simmons mentions all of his good intentions for card users. If he’s getting filthy rich from this business and isn’t returning some of his profits to the community, by way of improving the card for users, it’ll be proof enough of his intentions and the card’s true worth to its users. I’m not suggesting this be a non-profit business, just suggesting we should all be watching it’s business model.

    Comment by Nolan LaFramboise | April 21, 2009 | Reply


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: