Forbes has published information on a study done by the Young Invincibles that takes a look at the employment gap present between young black people and young white people amongst other things. Young Invincibles is a non-profit organization with the goal of amplifying the voice of young people, and their report while a shocker to some will ring as common knowledge to most blacks that are even remotely aware of the realities of life in America. But as with most things when blacks do or say it, it means nothing, when whites do it or say it, it means everything.

The basic findings of the report was that black people need to get more education because the more education they have the more likely they are to be employed and the smaller the employment gap becomes. What the report doesn’t speak on is the fact that black people are more likely to be underemployed meaning you have a Ph.D. and find yourself working in a position that only requires a Bachelors. It also doesn’t mention any solutions to issues that impact one’s ability to attain a higher level of education. So basically what the report is saying is that black people need to go to school more and all there employment problems will be solved.

Whilst I have more than a few problems with trying to address black employment problems from the standpoint of blacks just need to work harder so that they can get jobs that they are overqualified for. I can respect the reports attempt at voicing some of the concerns in the black community. The report speaks on racial profiling in the hiring process as well as incarceration rates amongst black males and the correlation between education and incarceration. In those things it becomes a useful tool of citation for those that want to talk about black issues but don’t want to cite any black scholars. Which unfortunately is all too common both within and outside of the black community.

But the report is also missing some key points of information such as the fact that black people are more educated than comparably situated whites as studies from Dr. William Darity point out. What this line of data says is that when black people and white people are on similar playing fields, the black person is more likely to be more educated and more credentialed. This shifts the entire discussion into a wealth and economic discussion as opposed to trying to make it a discussion purely about education. The report is also missing in the type of employment that black people with degrees have again as mentioned earlier.  While the report does mention incarceration numbers it doesn’t mention the fact that white people that are incarcerated have employment numbers similar to blacks that aren’t.  Lastly the report doesn’t really address the fact that black professionals still make less money than their white counterparts, which really seems to make the whole report scream, “you black people need to work harder and get educated so that you can have your MBA and be an assistant manager at McDonalds.”

As I said earlier, this information isn’t new to black folk, our elders have been preaching this message to us for the last 100 years. After assimilation the message became what we now commonly hear from whites and blacks of any sort of status, “you black people need to work harder.” I have a different solution, which is another one that we have been hearing for yours from black people that have pledged themselves to support Black America. Black people need to support black owned businesses, no one is more likely to hire a black person than another black person when you look at the numbers. We have to put our white fur over our black skin (polar bear) so that we can hopefully get blessed with a job in White America. We find ourselves constantly begging other people to do for us what we can do for ourselves, and the beautiful part about it is that in most cities the market for black businesses are wide open. Stop begging white people for jobs and start creating your own, only then will we see the employment gap truly disappear.