Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rand Paul and the Civil Rights Act

Protecting individual liberty is always hard because our neighbors will not always make decisions we agree with, and will sometimes make decisions we abhor, that is a nature of humanity.

Those who have no respect for individual liberty will always use the mighty and violent arm of the state to stomp on those who say abhorrent things or perform abhorrent actions. While the cause maybe just, the solution is not.

Since Rand Paul won the Republican nomination for the US Senate in Kentucky on Tuesday night, he has spent much of his waking time defending his position on the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and its encroachment on private property.

Last night he was on the Rachel Maddow Show where Maddow grabbed onto Paul's position on the Civil Rights Act and would not let go. She tried hard to prod him into making a gaffe that could be used as a soundbite, and even though Paul was functioning on very little sleep due to the previous night's celebrations and was probably exhausted from the non-stop interviews he gave throughout the day yesterday, he managed to avoid providing a damaging sound bite. He did, however, present himself and his position very poorly and sounded like a broken record, often avoiding the direct questioning with an answer that always began with "the interesting thing is..." and then he would mumble on about something unintelligible. Again, if you watch the interview, it is clear Paul was exhausted. He did very poorly in providing the intellectual support for his position that does exist and gave much fodder for the media to attack him with today.

That said, today is a new day and thankfully, the intellectual support for Paul's position is coming out of the woodwork. Here is one video blog that provides a clear explanation as to why Paul is on the right in regard to this issue:

On Rachel Maddow's blog, the following comment was posted:

I am a 45 year old Black American male who loves your show but I strongly disagree with you about your position on Rand Paul. Just so you know I voted for Obama and Kerry because I was horrified by both Bush and Palin respectively. Here's where I disagree with you.

1. If someone in the Klan owns a restaurant and doesn't want to serve me, why on earth would I want to support him by giving him my money? I don't want my money going to buy little Klan baby clothes. I'd rather the privately owned establishments wear their racism on their sleeves so I know who to support. If they want to lose my money, and the money of all other minorities and people with brains and a conscience, then fine. Racism is bad business.

2. There's two facts none of us can get around. Churches are still the most segregated places in America every Sunday morning. Its called freedom of religion. There are still restaurants where you can't go in D.C. and I can't go in Georgia. That's called tribalism. Integration cannot be forced privately, only publicly. Tribalism cannot be defeated by legislation. Freedom of speech and of religion means also freedom of @!$%#s. I prefer them with their hoods off.

3. I respectfully say that I think you're wrong to imply that Rand Paul is a racist for believing that

Woolworth's should be allowed to be segregated. I will go on the record right now and state that I believe that Woolworth's and any other privately owned business should be allowed to be segregated. We Black's have a choice now that we didn't back before the Civil Rights Act. Why would I want to support cracker ass Woolworth's if that's who owns the store? I'll take my money elswhere. If you had your way, I wouldn't know one from the other. I hope we can one day agree to let Woolworth's be free to take off its Klan Hood so you and I both know where to spend our money. Its not like and oil company. We all "have to" buy gasoline for now. We blacks have a choice which lunch counter we want to sit at in 2010. Rand Paul stated that when violence occurred it was wrong. He said it was morally reprehensible and he would never support it? He shouldn't be smeared as a racist.

I love you to pieces and as a person of color I identify with your pain, but I'm glad these racists and homophobes want to come out into the open now. I don't think Rand Paul is one of them.

Oteil Burbridge

Bassist Allman Brothers Band

Lawrenceville, Georgia

Also, as Paul gets attacked mistakenly as someone who would support Woolworth's right to segregate lunch counters back in 1960, we should all remember that it was not the Civil Rights Act that desegregated Woolworth's lunch counters, it was the people protesting just as Paul says he would too.

Paul will be on Meet the Press on Sunday. Hopefully he can diffuse the attacks on national television.

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