I don’t understand Rand Paul. Or more specifically, I don’t understand why libertarians like Rand Paul. Actually I don’t understand why anyone likes Rand Paul. Here’s why:
Speaking in Iowa last week, Rand Paul had this to say on Obama’s marriage equality “evolution”:
“Call me cynical, but I didn’t think his views on marriage could get any gayer”
Now I’m not a libertarian, but it seems to me that the appropriate, libertarian response to the President’s support of marriage equality would be something along the lines of “I believe that, personal feeling aside, everyone should have equal marriage rights, because the constitution guarantees Americans equal protection under the law. I’m glad to see that President Obama has finally figured that out”. See, I even threw a bit of backhandedness in there to make it a bit more palatable to the base.
But that’s not what Rand Paul said. No, instead he went with “that’s gay”, which is a level of discourse that could be expected from a middle school boy, not a prominent national figure. I won’t call him cynical, but I will call him a jackass. The quote above was what made news of course, but here’s the rest of it:
“Now it did kind of bother me, though, that he used the justification for it in a biblical reference. He said the biblical Golden Rule caused him to be for gay marriage. And I’m like: What version of the Bible is he reading? It’s not the King James version. It’s not the New American Standard. It’s not the New Revised version. I don’t know what version he is getting it from. Now that doesn’t mean we have to be harsh and mean and hate people, we understand sin and if we believe it’s sin we still understand that people sin. And we understand that we are not out there preaching some sort of hateful dogma against people. But that doesn’t mean that we have to go ahead and give up our traditions. We’ve got 6,000 years of tradition. There’s a lot of stability, even beyond religion, there’s stability in the family unit. Just from an anthropological point of view, the family is really important thing. We shouldn’t just give up on it.”
Has it not fucking occured to Rand Paul that marriage equality is a pro-family position? How is telling someone they are not allowed to have a family going to promote families? Of course he may also note that there are plenty of instances throughout the history of marriage where it has changed, so saying it can’t change because it never has is just completely wrong. What Rand Paul is saying here is that family is important, provided it fits his personal idea of what a family should look like. That doesn’t sound like a very libertarian position to me.
Neither does this, from last year (emphasis in original):
I’m not for profiling people on the color of their skin, or on their religion, but I would take into account where they’ve been traveling and perhaps, you might have to indirectly take into account whether or not they’ve been going to radical political speeches by religious leaders. It wouldn’t be that they are Islamic. But if someone is attending speeches from someone who is promoting the violent overthrow of our government, that’s really an offense that we should be going after — they should be deported or put in prison.
Yep, that’s right folks, if you’ve been traveling to places with funny sounding names, and heard someone say something nasty about the government, then you might be a terrorist, and should be deported or jailed. The constitution be damned.
Oh, and then there’s this (emphasis mine):
Leading United States Senate candidate Rand Paul today criticized the Obama administration’s decision to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center and try terrorism suspects in United States Civil Courts.
“Foreign terrorists do not deserve the protections of our Constitution,” said Dr. Paul. “These thugs should stand before military tribunals and be kept off American soil. I will always fight to keep Kentucky safe and that starts with cracking down on our enemies.”
Dr. Paul believes in strong national defense and thinks military spending should be our country’s top budget priority. He has also called for a Constitutional declaration of war with Afghanistan.
Rand Paul: More War! More Military Spending! Less Due Process!
Am I just really confused on what libertarians think? Because this guy sure doesn’t sound like one to me. But the Ron Paul crowd seems to love the guy! It’s been suggested Ron Paul’s delegate strategy’s end game is to secure the VP slot for Rand Paul, or that the ultimate goal is to build a base for a Rand Paul for President bid in 2016.
I honestly don’t get it.
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