Crowd-funding sites like Kickstarter and GoFundMe have been able to achieve some fantastic goals. They have also funded some really ridiculous stuff.
It was amazing news when LeVar Burton set record with his campaign for “Reading Rainbow.” The fundraiser was a shining example of what can be achieved when people come together for something positive. That’s what Kickstarter is all about!
On the other hand, there are people like this guy, who wants your help to fund and arm a militia that will be stationed at the border between Arizona and Mexico. And who could forget the guy that raised $70,000 to make potato salad? He’d only asked for $10 originally, and he way exceeded his expectations. Unfortunately, he lost about $30,000 in donations last week.
You have to take the good with the bad and the in between. More recently, one woman identified only as Yaya M. started a GoFundMe to gain white privilege. She’s looking to make about $135,000 in the long-run, but she’s currently at $3,675.
She presented her request with a lot of humor, but Yaya brought up some very real matters that have afflicted her for the majority of her life.
“Although I have layered oppressions that have affected my ability to access my slice of the American Pie™, no issue has affected me more readily than my lack of white privilege,” Yaya wrote. As a gainfully employed black woman, she’s been assumed to have been a direct beneficiary of Affirmative Action from her school days growing up all the way into her career. Moreover, she’s been told that her natural hair style makes her look unprofessional, and she’s had to fight against presumptuous that she is not as knowledgeable as her white male coworkers. “My lack of white privilege has created numerous obstacles as I’ve struggled to successfully compete in a white dominated workforce.”
She’s also hoping to recoup the loss in earnings she’s faced due to being underpaid because she’s not a white man. “As someone who has historically been classified by the United States government as a Black/African American woman,” she explained, “I’ve been earning anywhere from 63-69% of what a white man makes for the same work since I entered the workforce in 1999.”
The wage difference was an issue for Yaya from the day she entered the workforce. “Even if I control for part-time work as a teenager and consider increases in pay as I grew older/more experienced and changed my field, that still averages out to about a $9000 deficit for each year I’ve been employed,” she estimated. “Multiply that by 15 years of hustle and you have my total.”
This got us thinking: If we could start a Kickstarter campaign, what are some of the things we’d really love to have? Check out our list!
1. An End To The Light Skin Vs. Dark Skin Debate
It’s old. Can’t we all just agree that black people come in a range of beautiful shades and appreciate all of it?
It’s a running competition in the black community that one shade is better than another. We’ve attached stereotypes to people at different ends of the spectrum and it’s ridiculous. The debate has done nothing to reinforce the need to find value in how you naturally look and build self esteem. That needs to change, like right now!
Also, we’re really tired of rappers calling out different shades of women like we’re collectibles. It’s so stupid!
2. The Return Of ‘Girlfriends’ (New Episodes And A Movie)
“Girlfriends” was an awesome show that was cut down in its prime, and it never should have been yanked from the airwaves when The WB and UPN combined to form The CW. We never got to see Joan plan her wedding, which was the real brass ring she’d been chasing the whole time! And what about Toni coming back to Los Angeles for her big reconciliation with Joan?
Fans of “Girlfriends” were robbed, but a Kickstarter to resurrect the show could make it all better! Instead of having it air on BET under Mara Brock Akil‘s development deal with the network, though, we want to see it Netflix!
3. Free After-School Literacy Programs In Public Schools
Reading is fundamental, but not everyone can do it. It’s an essential life skill that has somehow escaped about 14 percent of the United States population. According to the results of a study done by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institute of Literacy last year, 19 percent of high school graduates can’t read, so how they’re getting diplomas is a mystery! About 21 percent of adults read below a 5th grade level.
If qualified volunteers could spend a little extra time with kids after school to help them learn how to read and comprehend at higher levels at younger ages, we could see the illiteracy rate take a steep decline. That would be a beautiful thing!
4. Customized Theme Music On Demand
Nothing quite sets the tone for your day like starting with the right music! We need a self-generating playlist that is determined by our musical taste, as well as the rate and pressure of our footsteps (ex: leisurely stroll, model stomp, gotta-get-to-work gait, etc.).
It’s also got to be in tune with our general mood and daily goals. Music has the power to shift your gears, so a high-energy jam in your mid-afternoon slump might be just the thing you need to hear on your way back from lunch. And if it could come with positive affirmations between songs, that would be great!
5. Higher Ratings For Positive TV Shows
We see your comments on Facebook! You’re sick of “Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta,” “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “Basketball Wives” and nearly any other reality show on VH1. The outcry for positive programming is deafening! The only way to get it, though, is to tune in for the shows that you think have a positive impact on society. Who wouldn’t love to see more of Neil deGrasse Tyson on “Cosmos”? We would!
If we could get some money to give drama-free shows higher ratings, we would. Of course, then people would have to find something else to complain about.
Honorable Mention: Mandatory Money Management Classes In High School
Kids generally start working in high school, so it would be awesome if they learned the value of how to manage the coins they earn.
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