LTC Allen B. Wests 5th grade class picture

Birthday 2020: Reflections on This Day

In Front Page by Allen West

Greetings, everyone! It is Friday, February 7, 2020. Fifty-nine years ago, Elizabeth Thomas West gave birth to a son in the “blacks only” Hughes-Spalding hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. Herman West, Sr,. now had a second son, one whom he would raise with honor, integrity, and a stern sense of discipline. He would, some 15 years later, challenge that son to become a US Army officer. It was a challenge that his youngest boy, Allen Bernard, would achieve on July 31, 1982, at the University of Tennessee.

There has been so much that this son of Buck and Snooks West wanted to share with them. Dad never got to see another promotion of his son, nor the birth of his two granddaughters. Mom was there for the birth of one granddaughter, and sadly, she lost her life due to liver cancer eight months later.

Mom and Dad didn’t see their son take command of an Army combat Battalion. They were not there when he was sworn in as a member of Congress. The funny thing is, when I was born in 1961, blacks could not walk on Ft. Lauderdale Beach or go anywhere near Palm Beach Island. But, by the time I turned 50, back in 2011, I had been sworn in as the Congressional Representative for Ft. Lauderdale Beach and Palm Beach Island.

Today is not only my birthday, but it is also a celebration of what one can achieve, become, in America.

There are those who tell us that they make the decisions of equality of outcomes for all. They want to make all things equal for all people, which is ludicrous, absurd, and immoral. I sit here typing these words in a very nice home, with family nearby, in the beautiful Eastern Hills of Garland, Texas. I know that it is the American equality of opportunity that has enabled me to “Be All that I Can Be.” I do not need any Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Barack Obama, or any other progressive socialist leftists telling me what they can give me, at the expense of others.

In America, we can do this ourselves, and yes, we did build the greatest nation the world has ever known!

Today is not “my” birthday, I share it with others. I share this day with a very special friend, my ol’ motorcycle riding buddy Gary Galiano of Jupiter, Florida. Gary and I not only share this day as our birthday but also the very same year, 1961. I am just a few hours older than Gary. Gary as well has seen great days, and sad ones, losing his beloved dad and wife to cancer. But, through it all, Gary and I are indicative of what it means to be Americans, free, independent, successful in our own will and determination . . . not that of others.

So, in closing, if today is also the beginning of your life journey, share it with us all here. And, perhaps, one day, we can have a Lucky Number 7 Birthday Party, right here in Garland, Texas. I would love to spend this day with other Americans born on February 7th.

God bless y’all, and yes, it is a Happy Birthday because I am an American! I was born in Georgia, became a Tennessee Volunteer, married my wife and became a dad in America’s heartland, Kansas, and like the Tennessee Vols of old, I came to and now live in Texas.

Damn right, it is a freaking Happy Birthday.

Oh yeah, try to pick me out from my fifth-grade picture above at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School in Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward.

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LTC West is running for Chair of the Republican Party of Texas! To support his efforts, please visit his campaign website!

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