Spiritually Speaking: Support your local businesses – News – Sharon AdvocateSeptember 17, 2020
Every small purchase makes a big difference. — U.S. Chamber of Commerce
The absolute best onion rings in the Western world. A haircut that, every appointment, leaves me happy. An intimate neighborhood bookstore that feeds my mind and soul.
These gifts all come from small businesses, businesses I am blessed to be a customer of and businesses, like millions of others across the country, that need our support, our prayers and our dollars, right now.
Those hand-breaded melt-in-your-mouth onion rings come from The Clam Box, on Wollaston Beach in Quincy, serving customers since 1968. The place that keeps my receding hairline well-coiffed is Brunos Barbershop, the longest continually operating business in downtown Natick. And my go-to local place for books is Aesops Fable, located in Holliston; its only a few years old, but this shop already claims a very loyal clientele.
Try and imagine your life without such small businesses to serve you. Ill be you cant. None of us can. Most days most of us spend our money in at least one small business, some Main Street enterprise, and that dollar supports your neighbors and pays taxes and employs someone in your family and, in the deepest sense, makes up the fabric of what it means to call a place home. The doughnut store on the corner you visit each morning for a hot breakfast sandwich. The antique place downtown you cant pass by without walking in and poking around. The auto repair shop that is honest and fair and dependable.
Small businesses make our tummies happy and expand our minds and clean our clothes and fix the car and groom the dog and do our taxes and well, there is really almost nothing a small business, these local fixtures, cannot do.
Small businesses, though marked by that moniker small, are anything but small when it comes to the national, state and local economies. There are 30.7 million small businesses in the United States, employing almost 60 million people, nearly half of all the jobs in our country. Before COVID hit and the economy collapsed, small businesses created almost 2 million new jobs a year. But now perhaps more so than any other time since the Great Depression, many small businesses are in trouble and struggling to survive.
Though we needed and still need to shut down large parts of the economy to save thousands of lives from the coronavirus, this public health necessity is resulting in so many local establishments either being on the edge of insolvency or, already closed, casualties of the pandemic. Even before COVID, small businesses were under siege, as us Americans radically shifted how we buy things, employ services, shop. Why get in the car and fight traffic and search for a parking space and wonder if the store actually has what you want in stock when, with the click of a computer mouse, that item can show up on your front stoop in two days, even sooner?
I know Im guilty of this, my recycling bins filled up each week with bubble…