Last month, Congressmen Allen West hosted a historic Black Conservative Forum in order to “discuss how to articulate and take the message of black conservatism back to our communities”, per the retired Army Colonel.
He referenced conservative principles such as limited government, fiscal responsibility, sovereignty, equality of opportunity, achievement, the free market system, values, education, family, and security.
“The conservative voice in the Black community remains mostly unacknowledged by politicians and the public alike,” West said. “While the conservative Black voice has always existed, it is more important than ever that it be recognized and encouraged.”
Among those on the multi ethnic, bi-partisan panel, were Congressman Tim Scott, R-S.C.; Congressman Emanuel Cleaver (chairman, Congressional Black Caucus, D-Mo.); Rev. Cleon Bryant (pastor, LA and founder of “Runaway Slave”); KCarl Smith (Frederick Douglass Republicans); Congressman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio; and numerous other national leaders. The panel was moderated by Star Parker, founder and president of C.U.R.E., the Center for Urban Renewal and Education and nationally syndicated columnist.
Congressman Tim Scott, speaking of the perception that all Blacks are liberals, stated: “I have seen both sides. I successfully flunked out of high school in the ninth grade—with their (big government) help. Then my mother told me: Boy, I brought you into this world, I can take you out.” Scott continued: “Simple formula: Play by the rules. We must realize that something for nothing is a chain around your wrist. We have to succeed because we have been given the right to succeed! That is our heritage as Americans.”
Star Parker raised the issue of getting school choice into urban communities: KCarl Smith responded: “Frederick Douglass went through the problem of school choice. They tried to force him to send his daughter to an inferior school. The parent should be able to choose. This is worse than slavery! Douglass said, in 1848, ‘Face it, fight it, fix it!’ He put pressure on until the least were elevated and the most vulnerable were valued.”