I Need to ‘Start the Movement’…? No, Thanks

With good reason, it’s a wise move to do the minimum of vetting nowadays when it comes to anyone who is presented as the new “it” in the conservative movement. More times than not, people portraying themselves as conservatives are new to the fight as there are potential promotional and monetary rewards that are the prime motivators, and too many of those people converted very recently, if that conversion was really sincere at all.

As a response to a comment on Facebook where I asked the poster when she was going to sponsor a “Black Male Walk”, seeing how she was now highlighting a black woman who may be a part of this trendy #WalkAway “movement”, I got the following….

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

In 1995, I walked away from the Democrat Party and did so publicly in liberal Hollywood. There is political discrimination and being a vocal, black conservative in the entertainment industry quickly closed all doors for employment. I later was approached and asked to run for United States Congress in California; an unopposed Republican candidacy that only failed as it was dependent on a succession liberal Democrats made sure never happened for obvious reasons.

City Hall politicians have raised millions to defeat Valley Cityhood because they will lose power if decision-making is returned to local communities! We all demand better government in the Valley and Los Angeles. Don’t hold onto the Valley against our will!
Special Reorganization of the San Fernando Valley Area of the City of Los Angeles, 2002

By 2003, I moved back home to Massachusetts and was hired by a local cable access station where almost all of the programming was pro-Democrat. The audience for the television channel was almost 90% liberal and there were no programs available to counter the constant progressive bombardment aimed at their like-minded and pliable young people.

As a counter, I created a television show, not like “rant” videos that speak to the choir for social media likes are created today. This was years before YouTube, Facebook, Twitter or any other Internet entities that could widely promote a message.

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

Unlike the relative physical safety of social media ranting today, I had to walk amongst those whom I was rebutting. And yes, I mocked them when any opportunity presented itself to call out stupidity and/or blatant lies. I walked amongst sneering liberals in the local supermarket, at the gas station, local post office, and at the school where my sons were in attendance. It was never about being popular. It was always all about “the movement”.

The show won three Northeast Regional Awards (New England and New York State), an honor I humbly note because the judges were almost all liberal. Maybe I offered perspectives they never considered, maybe because I was a token; I like to credit superior production value. But those awards resulted in numerous requests from cable access channels in other states for DVDs of my weekly show be sent to them for airing in their locales; all without social media promotion as in 2004, neither YouTube, Facebook or Twitter existed.

I never got paid to do my shows. I created and produced them on my own time and received no gratuities from the other stations that aired them. As the liberal mantra of the day was that all Republicans are racist, I deemed it important that my black face was explaining ‘conservative’ ideas. I wrote, produced, created the graphics and edited ALL of my television programs; an achievement very few of the in-demand conservative icons today can put on a resume.

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

Years prior to my television program, I started writing opinion pieces online in 2002, some later shared by notables. By 2005, one of my pieces caught the eye of someone at CNN where I was later interviewed and got to rebut the liberal excuse that black people didn’t know any better and the looting in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina was justified.

I was later approached by Project 21, a national network of black conservatives and was appointed a national spokesman that later resulted in my addressing the controversy of a black Harvard professor’s arrest on The O’Reilly Factor.

I met the president of the conservative Massachusetts Republican Assembly and was later voted in as their Vice President to help assist in messaging. During that time, I also ran for chair of the Massachusetts Republican Party in an attempt to counter the divisive election tactics of David Axelrod who was running the Deval Patrick for governor campaign and that other half-black guy running for president.

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

In 2008, I saw a need in my six-town district for desperately-needed economic development; a need blown off by the two-term Democrat incumbent. I didn’t win, but I damaged him, which, at the end of the day, is something any loyal Republican should do to an opponent. I didn’t run for attention or monetary gain. I certainly didn’t run to be an ignored Republican in a super-majority Democrat Massachusetts Legislature. It was all about trying to address a need.

In 2009, a D.C. think tank contacted me about moving to Virginia to create a video department. I did so and when the online platform was launched, some of the technical and style skills learned in Hollywood and successfully utilized in Massachusetts were implemented, many conservative sites recognized my videos, tried to copy and are used to this day.

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

I always sought to inform the public of the dubious politics in both parties and movements. I never sought to make it all about me, co-opt the achievements of others to promote myself, surround myself with so-called celebrities for my own self-aggrandizement, and create events that only those with money and influence could attend.

I defended the Tea Party against false allegations of racism, did so on their turf and without the desire and/or need for social media likes and retweets.

Genuine conservatives reached out and offered the opportunity to share my ideas with a larger audience, again not for expected monetary gain or personal ‘exposure’.

My activism has always been self-funded. I don’t have the luxury of a pension or other means that would give me the time to indulge my pet projects. With that, I believe we should all be wary of those who appear on the scene, saying all the right things in front of the right people. Conservatives continue to look like fools for embracing and promoting those who saw us as cash cows. We try and do the very vetting that should have been done initially, we’re usually told we’re jealous, and when the truth about these usurpers finally emerges, those who blindly embraced them say they knew it all along.

Yeah, sure.

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

Do I need to start a movement? By today’s definition of “movement”, no. I will not be lumped in with those who are doing so, not to advance a cause that really doesn’t need their help. I will continue to share the knowledge via experiences accumulated since 1995, not just since the presidential campaign of Donald Trump. I will continue to speak, to whomever invites me, like I have on dozens of radio and television programs, friendly and hostile. As a conservative and United States Navy veteran, I still believe I have a lot of untapped insights to share.

I was trying to get the message out when mainstream Republicans ignored us because there were no social media rewards to be garnered for such showcasing. I attempted to inspire and there was no price of admission sought.

I remember reading the website ‘Black & Right’ when I was on duty assignment in Afghanistan for two and a half years. It was a very integral source of political analysis and helped me to formulate my own personal policy perspectives and insights. Bob Parks has always been a very poignant, straight shooting political voice and at a time when the failure of liberal progressive socialist policies are clearly evident, we need more conservative luminaries to educate, inform, and inspire a resurgence of conservatism.

Bob and his website blazed a trail and made my emergence possible.
Allen B. West, Lieutenant Colonel (US Army, Retired), Member of 112th US Congress (2011-2013)

You should start the Movement. Don’t wait for someone else to do it.

I “walked away” years before likes and hashtags were created and sought for coveted social media validation. I did so, not to be followed, but because to do nothing with tools available would be irresponsible as a conservative.

I didn’t need to “start a movement” to do that.

One Response

  1. Taura Sheree Helms

    A great article once again. Why is it that all conservatives suddenly have to have a “walk away” story attached to their conservatism? Look, I am not going to attack the #WalkAway movement as I personally believe that there are some genuine people in that movement-some. However, I have to “controversial” belief about certain people coming out as conservative in the Post-Obama environment. There are two camps, those who are indeed opportunists and those who have been in hiding. The former is out for money and know who they are with their nonsense about being a “spokesperson” for particular communities. The latter may have had a portion of people who were closeted conservatives but are now officially out because there is strength in numbers. But I can remember having the same views in the late 1990’s as a teenager into my early adulthood in the 2000’s and took a lot of flack for it. There were no big money opportunities for me, nor should there have been. There was no movement that would change the leud comments and constant back and forth. Its hard to be a conservative and there is no amount of race, color, or creed that will change that fact. I have embraced a lot of the newcomers but I am also wary. Time will tell, but this new rockstar conservativism where a few feel the need to be spokespeople for the movement is little disturbing. As a black woman, I became a conservative because it was a way to move away from having someone speak on my behalf, only to have formal liberals come in and impose their leftist idea of a benevolent protector over me or any other conservative. Again, time will tell.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.