The black people, who are looking to relocate to Arizona, want to know what it is like to live there, but as a black person.
Here are some common things said by black people in Arizona and our feedback:
Local online fashion and lifestyle influencer, Coca or @cocacolalola , says she’s thinking about moving away in her “The Truth About Living in Arizona” Youtube video made just two months ago. If you are looking into the black dating scene of Phoenix, Arizona, this influencer says there is none. She goes on to say that is true unless you are after a sugar daddy. She describes Arizona overall as “laid back”, “chill”, and “different”. She says the environment gives her retire or settle down vibes. She noticed the obviously low number of black people in Arizona. The YouTuber mentions she would prefer a place in the South where she could experience more “southern hospitality” and be surrounded by her people as in other black people.
In Arizona, it’s a delight to casually bump into another black stranger, who treats you with respect and gives you those “family” vibes. (This is something special as a non-native to Arizona.) They remind you of family member, family friend, or a distant memory. In most cases, the black people of Arizona speak on being the minority in their workplace, at their school, and in certain recreational activities.
Local activist and entrepreneur, @djfreshmaker, gave some of his perspective on what it is like to be black in Arizona in a local interview with 12 News, pictured below from Youtube.
He talked briefly about the past of “sundown towns” in Arizona. There are rumors circulating that sundown towns are still active in Arizona, let’s just say, a sun down town is an unsafe place to be after sun down as a black person. He also mentions a general problem for the black community, not only in Arizona, is the lack of available resources. In addition to that, I’d like to say the resources that are available, are not always the most user friendly or the most up to date materials. His interview with 12 News was quite chopped up and mixed in with the interviews of two other local activists and their thoughts, I’m sure he had more value to add to the question. Ultimately, it ended with DJ Fresh Maker, acknowledging the progress of Arizona and it’s continued growth.
We saw more comments regarding being black in Arizona from local tattoo artist and online influencer, @dakartattooing, in his video, “Chandler, Arizona – Moving – Living in Phoenix – Arizona”. In the video, he starts by saying not only is there lots of important black history in Arizona, but that the history is deeply rooted. The tattoo artist encourages us, black people, to get around other educated individuals and to educate ourselves. He said this while learning the History of Harris Family of N.J. Harris Park in Chandler, Arizona with another resident and business professional of Arizona, Christopher McMullan.
Black YouTuber and Welder of HogOn Welding, says he knows why the bulk of his problems in Arizona have occurred. In his video titled, “Blacks in Phoenix AZ don’t have a lot of culture“, the influencer says that Arizona lacks some culture. He went on to explain his meaning of culture “believing in something” or “standing on something”, in reference to being a conscious or ‘woke’ black person. He describes his people, black people, as being not very accepting of learning or implementing ‘new ways’ of doing things and goes on to say they are used to ‘handouts’.
Social Media Influencer, Syerra Lynn sat down and talked about being black in Arizona on her channel with two friends; Troy and Tasia. The influencer has recently departed from Arizona fairly recently, but she’s been very vocal about all thing Arizona on her social platforms for some time now. The video that we’re referencing was made July of 2019. The group of friends had some similar and some conflicting views about being black in Arizona. They all agreed Phoenix, Arizona is a beautiful place to be and how much of a “laid back” place it tends to be because people, for the most part, ‘mind they business’. The group of friends share the worry that too much of the ‘mind ya business’ atmosphere in Phoenix, Arizona is deterring the sense of community.
Syerra Lynn describes Arizona as the place to lay your foundation. She says nobody is really getting put on in Arizona, but goes on to describe Phoenix as a land of major opportunity. Tasia disagrees and would not recommend this as a starting location for the youth as she sees it as a place for families, retiring and settling down. She would not describe Arizona as a place conducive to business and development as a young black entrepreneur.
As a resident for going on seven years, I’d like to say that Phoenix Arizona is what you make you make of it.
What do you want it to be?
Are you looking for a safe place to reinvent yourself?
Well… Look no further you found it!
Arizona is still fairly new as a state and it has so much potential for growth and development. Phoenix, Arizona is the 5th biggest city in the United States. The suburbs and inner cities of Phoenix are under constant construction and development to efficiently accommodate more people and more businesses. With new business comes new employment opportunities.
There are over 7 million people and counting in Arizona. According to the census.gov, 5.2% of Arizonians are black, that means black people make up over 360,000 people in the state’s population. That number does not include the black men and women of the Afro Latino community.
You can be the you that you need to be in Arizona.
Are you looking to be secluded/isolated?
I always joke that Arizona is the perfect spot for the witness protection program. Most of the apartments and housing mimic one another in style and color. It’s easy to move into a place in Arizona and go unnoticed and unbothered. Especially, with attached garages and literally everything available via delivery.
I would say people really do mind their own business in Arizona. I was on the bandwagon with everyone saying Native Arizonians are unfriendly because like the influencer, Coca, mentioned there’s not a lot of southern hospitality in Arizona. From my experience, people don’t really greet you or show simply courtesies like thanking a stranger while holding a door.
I think it may just be a part of the new big city atmosphere. If you have not learned by 2020 that you should be careful, who you approach and talk to, where have you been? Under a rock?!
As far as culture and community for blacks in Arizona it is under construction. I can actively see and find numerous black organizations, black businesses, black influencers, and black events that are consistently available. Problem is, all the information is scattered amongst different platforms and it makes it harder to put the pieces together. I think once we achieve progress in unifying the black community in Phoenix, Arizona the growth for the black economy in Arizona will be astronomical.
Are you looking for a place to raise a family or retire?
Phoenix, Arizona loves the kids. What I noticed from day one is there is always some type of support in the community for the youth. Arizona is big on the protection of children as well. I won’t comment on the educational system as I have not experienced it. I recommend you do some extensive research.
The area overall is relaxing, the scenery is beautiful and the weather is just about as safe as it can possibly get. There are no major natural disasters. I mean.. there are dust storms and monsoon season, but that is really minor in comparison to city destroying hurricanes and earthquakes. You can be ‘outside’ year round.
Maybe you don’t know what you are looking for, but I’m sure you can find it somewhere in Phoenix, Arizona.
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