Saturday, November 27, 2010

Rise of the Black Conservatives (all two of them)

There is no easy way to say this: Black men and women who support the American Right Wing catch a lot of hell.  Although volumes have been written on this topic (monolithic voting blocks rarely accomplish much), it should be noted that freethinking individuals who deviate from this unfortunate norm, not on the basis of race, but upon the premise of philosophy, do exist -- and are thriving.

Allen West (pictured) is a retired Army Lt. Colonel and the Representative-elect of Florida's 22nd congressional district.  Having won his rematch earlier this month against incumbent Ron Klein, the Tea Party favorite and 22-year military veteran will become the first African-American Republican from Florida to sit on Capital Hill in over 130 years.  The University of Tennessee graduate (B.A. '83) will also serve a contingency that has voted Democrat in each of the last three Presidential elections.  So disapproving eyes -- especially the Congressional Black Caucus -- will be watching.

Along with Representative-elect Tim Scott, the first African-American Republican from South Carolina elected to Congress in 113 years, these two men will carry the banner for Black Conservatives once held solely by the former four-term Representative from Oklahoma, J.C. Watts.  And considering the grief that is undoubtedly heading their way, I hope they carry the banner proudly.

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