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FunTimes Magazine

Ho Ho Ho Holiday Spending - Opinion Piece

Dec 13, 2021 10:00AM ● By Karen Warrington
a Black mother and young daughter shopping Christmas ornaments for the holidays

We are in the midst of the holiday season and we are being bombarded with commercials urging us to spend, spend, spend in spite of the ongoing pandemic and the dismal economic outlook for many Americans. We are crowding into shopping malls in mass to search for holiday “deals” and ordering merchandise almost non-stop on our phones. 

According to the National Retail Federation, holiday sales between November and December this year will increase and Americans are expected to spend between $843.4 billion and $859 billion in sales. 

Black folks are right in that spending mix, and not only during the holiday season. We’re spending our hard-earned dollars throughout the year. There are nearly 50 million Black people in the U.S. and Black consumers - that would be us - spend more than a trillion dollars a year.

Hopefully, as you prepare to shell out major bucks for a PlayStation, a Gucci robe, or a Louis Vuitton bag, you pause for a moment and consider starting to save up to buy a house and stop paying exorbitant rent. Economists say that the best way for Black people to decrease the continuing wealth gap would be homeownership. Of course, there are many barriers to Black homeownership deliberately placed in the way for Black potential homeowners. But nothing has ever been easy for the Black community. 

So when you hear the mall Santa say ho, ho, ho it may be time to do a pocketbook pivot and rethink your long-term economic strategy rather than short-term feel-good retail therapy during this holiday season.

 Karen Warrington has had a decades long career as a broadcast journalist, communications professional, performing artist, and documentary filmmaker. She has traveled extensively throughout Africa, the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia. She is committed to being a voice for the African Diaspora.

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