Local business owner wants Washington to support new job bill.
Amjad El Nasir, 58-year-old business owner, said that President Barack Obama is “doing as much as he can possibly can,” when it comes to lowering the unemployment rate of 9.1 percent and trying to create new jobs for Americans.
“He can suggest and submit programs and packages all day long, but if it’s not passed by the [U.S. House of Representatives] or the Senate, then his hands are tied,” Naisir said. “The bigger issues I think are the idea of infrastructure, transportation, the roads, and all of the basic things that need to be dealt with. I think that is a wise route to take.”
Nasir sees himself as an entrepreneur, in the sense of developing ideas, concepts and businesses in the African-American community. Before moving here in 1998, he took a serious long look at Philadelphia, especially North Philadelphia, and found it to be a very fertile ground to develop business ideas.
Cookies and Cream, once a shoe repair shop and then a television repair shop at the corner of 23rd and Berks streets, held within it four stores that gave Nasir the opportunity to implement the idea of the ice cream shop.
He agrees with the president’s new job act, believing it to be an “excellent idea,” adding that if you can take the common man (and not the corporate man), and give them the opportunities to employ themselves, it will prove to be beneficial.
“I think the president is doing a lot,” Nasir said. “On the flip side, African-Americans are those who are really low in the employment market and suffer more than anyone else. Those who are, perhaps, not really well educated enough to sustain themselves in such a way to meet their day to day operations. I think those things hurt more than anything.”
Nasir said there is a gridlock in Washington because of the “rival groups” of the democrats and republicans, who have different interests that they want to see reached. He is also not surprised by the current unemployment rate, but said he has not seen it this bad.
“It’s no different than gas rising up in the market,” he said. “There’s no middle-class now in America. It’s either you have or you don’t have, and so the common person really suffers.”
Dominique Johnson can be reached at email@example.com.