Allen West’s comments about Communists in Congress were needlessly provocative, but in the scheme of things he doesn’t deserve as much grief for them as he’s been getting. Plenty of politicians have said worse, but West has become a magnet for criticism recently. The latest fallout is from the NAACP, which reportedly disinvited West from a fundraiser where he was supposed to deliver the keynote address:
Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) was supposed to be the keynote speaker at a fundraiser for his district chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) this past Saturday. But days before the event, the group canceled the gathering and asked West not to come back when they rescheduled. Why?
“There’s a certain statement he made about Communists,” Jerry Gore, president of the Martin County NAACP, told Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers. “That statement alone … we do not represent that type of atmosphere.”
That’s the local NAACP chapter’s choice, but considering the inflammatory speakers the national group has hosted in the past – recently Rev. Jeremiah Wright and Van Jones – it doesn’t sound like controversial statements have been much of a disqualifier in the past. And West’s comments obviously pale in comparison to saying America was responsible for the September 11th attacks, or signing a 9/11 truth petition.
The backlash against West hasn’t seemed to hurt him in conservative circles. He’s reportedly speaking to a prominent group of conservative donors in New York today and has started referencing his Communist comments in an email fundraising pitch.