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Chan Lowe: Rep. West considers leaving the Black Caucus


This development shouldn’t come as any surprise. The Congressional Black Caucus⎯all Democrats except for Rep. Allen West⎯comprises, for the most part, members of Congress who represent black constituencies and fight for black interests and aspirations.

Rep. West is a tea party-backed conservative who ran in a politically split district that is majority white. He happens to be an African American, and while he does not downplay his heritage, he tends to identify himself more by his ideology and military background than his race.

While the Congressional Black Caucus views the relationship of its constituents to government as a constant struggle for attention amid competing demands upon national resources, and a fight to redress institutional wrongs of the past, Rep. West has indicated that government entitlement programs perpetuate the culture of dependency into which he feels the African American community has allowed itself to fall.

His views are legitimately held, but nevertheless are a bad fit with the Black Caucus and everything it strives for. Rep. West should not feel compelled to belong to the Black Caucus simply because he is black, particularly if his ideas fail to resonate with any of the other members. The Caucus, as far as I know, has not asked him to leave, although the differences between them have become more pointed of late.

Maybe Rep. West would be doing all sides a favor by respectfully quoting the famous Groucho Marx line: “Please accept my resignation. I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept people like me as a member.”

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I have to give him credit he stood his ground on American values this time.I just wish he was not so ridged on people control as a milatary men believes in,for we are civilians that will not just snap to it nor do real Americans that wish to stand up for what they believe in and big money will never rule us.He has the makings of a good man but a little more compasion for the everyday working man would go a long way.

Liberals will never understand the message that West conveys because it demands of them the will of self-sufficiency and gratitude. These concepts are foreign and counter everything they stand for.

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About the author
Chan LoweCHAN LOWE has been the Sun Sentinel’s first and only editorial cartoonist for the past twenty-six years. Before that, he worked as cartoonist and writer for the Oklahoma City Times and the Shawnee (OK) News-Star.

Chan went to school in New York City, Los Angeles, and the U.K., and graduated from Williams College in 1975 with a degree in Art History. He also spent a year at Stanford University as a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow.

His work has won numerous awards, including the Green Eyeshade Award and the National Press Foundation Berryman Award. He has also been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His cartoons have won multiple first-place awards in all of the Florida state journalism contests, and The Lowe-Down blog, which he began in 2008, has won writing awards from the Florida Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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