It’s the morning of my 53rd birthday and I awoke with some thoughts that I felt needed to be shared.
Last night, I appeared on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox. The topic was the recent verbal attack on Senator Tim Scott and the GOP by North Carolina NAACP Executive Director, Reverend William Barber II. Opposite me was a young black Democrat strategist named Richard Fowler. In retrospect, what amazes me now is that Mr. Fowler could not even bring himself to speak out against the heinous words of Rev. Barber to describe black conservatives as “ventriloquist dummies” and “mouthpieces.” Mr. Fowler responded to Sean Hannity’s questions by simply stating that Rev. Barber has the right to free speech.
And so it goes for American black conservatives — we are afforded no safe quarter from white liberals and worse, black liberals. It goes all the way back to the first true black conservative, Booker T. Washington, and the vicious attacks he had to face from whites as well as blacks – including his onetime friend, WEB DuBois. Even to this day there are those who refer to this brave man as an “Uncle Tom” and “sellout.” A brave man who founded a black institution of higher learning and convinced whites to support that endeavor, which still stands today as Tuskeegee University.
Here is a leader in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Rev. Barber, attacking “colored people” who seek to advance their race based upon a certain set of principles: faith, family, education, entrepreneurship/free market enterprise, individual liberty, and national security. Why?
Why is it that Senator Tim Scott, Justice Clarence Thomas, Dr. Ben Carson, Herman Cain, Condoleeza Rice, and others are hunted and disparaged just because of their beliefs and principles?Why at the 50th anniversary of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “I Have a Dream” speech was there not one single accomplished black conservative invited to speak and be recognized? Why is it that President Barack Hussein Obama is elevated to a glorified status, when in April 2009 he cancelled the DC school voucher program for deserving young black children in the nation’s capital?
There is a true fear of black conservatives in America and our existence is seen as a threat that must be destroyed. It’s not a matter of attacking our policy positions, principles, values, and love of God and country. It is about destroying us personally, our character, our families. It’s truly an all-out assault, as Justice Clarence Thomas referred to as a “high tech lynching,” – and from the same political party who gave us literal lynchings.
Black conservatives welcome open debate but we never get that opportunity because as we gain national attention it’s not about what we know and our intellectual freedom. It’s about a vehement desire to see us damaged beyond repair. And the attacks do not always have to emanate from the opposition party and ideology, of Democrats and progressive socialists. There are times when a black conservative must be aware of the political adversary to the front, as well as their believed colleagues to the rear.
I know one simple truth, as more of you gather and grow our website audience and social media presence, there are those who see this double-standard. Instead of engaging me, or others, based upon my thoughts, perspectives, ideals, and principles of governance, the debate becomes one of personal assault, and that includes my own family.
Is it any wonder there are so many black conservatives who reside in the shadows, as they see what occurs? To them I say I am more than willing to suffer the attacks, assaults, character assassinations, and lies in order to save my beloved Constitutional Republic, and strive to ensure a better future for my daughters.
It is often a very lonely walk and there are times when I do not know if I can take another arrow. But then I am reminded of the dog tag around my neck with the verse from Joshua 1:9 (NIV), “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
And from Isaiah 54:17 (NIV), “No weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the Lord.”
So as I begin my 53rd year on God’s earth, I know the attacks and assaults will continue. Predictably, they will increase in intensity, and be vitriolic and vile in every way. And they will seek to hurt not just me but those whom I love the most.
I can only trust in God, just as I am sure Josiah T. Walls, Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and all the black conservative trailblazers before me did. I encourage the next generation of black conservatives, like a young man named Josh I met Thursday at a Starbucks in DC to stand firm and strong. There is a higher calling and mission for which we must be strong and courageous in the midst of the fiery darts and arrows of those who seek our demise. The reward is greater as you earn the love, respect, and regard of your fellow countrymen, and fellow blacks, who will see your perseverance in the storm.
I don’t know what lies before me, politically or otherwise, but I trust the Lord will see me through it because He would not have brought me to this place to abandon me. In the end, we are just shadows and dust — but if possible, we can leave a legacy. I hope to leave one of faithful, steadfast, and loyal service to America.
To those who wish to destroy me, well, it’s obvious, your true intent is to destroy this nation. So to Reverend William Barber II, the NAACP, Richard Fowler, and those who wish to hate me and are plotting the next assault, I say thank you. Thank you because when you tell me I am weak that is when I am the strongest.
I am proud to be the son of Herman Sr. and Elizabeth Thomas West who 53 years ago today, brought me into this world. I am the embodiment of their legacy and I seek daily to bring a smile to their face above in Heaven.
As I always state, you don’t get flak, you don’t get attacked, unless you are over the target. Thank you all for your birthday well wishes. God bless you and God bless these great United States of America.