Dear Senator Paul,
I heard your comments on the Baltimore protests this morning and decided that, since I’m still thinking about them, I should put some of my thoughts down in writing.
The protests aren’t about a “lack of fathers.” They’re the beginning of an uprising. They are about the deprivation you and others, including your dad, have been complicit in when engaging in rhetoric, as well as setting policy through the laws you’ve written or endorsed, and voted on. You see, the very policies you endorse are the policies that make it impossible to keep families together.
They are about the oppressive regime you’ve facilitated over the years, either tacitly or actively, by voting yes on budgets that have turned policing into the oppressive militarized system we have today. They are about the prison-industrial system you have tacitly and actively encouraged through the enactment of laws that promote harsher sentencing, and through the “states’ rights” you hold so dear that permit the privatization of jails and the abuses that go on in them.
They are about the unequal education system you are so in favor of doing away with, through your belief that it isn’t up to the state to provide it.
They are about the same civil rights you have said, more than once, you would not vote for, were the 1964 Civil Rights Act be up for a vote in our day. They are about treating each other as humans and not calling each other names like “thugs” and “thieves.”
You see, Senator Paul, were it not for just about everything you and others like you stand for, and were it not for your privileged view of the world, we might long have solved the problems of poverty, incarceration, and inequality. We might even have come most of the way to finally acknowledging America’s “original sin,” and begun to make real reparations.
It is hypocritical of leaders like you to moralize from the comfort of your privilege while, at the same time, ensure that the people you are preaching to have no means of subsistence.
Why did your radio appearance bother me so much? It would not have bothered me one bit, were it not for the fact that you have teamed up with Senator Cory Booker to reform criminal justice. Well, Senator Paul, those you just called thieves and thugs are the very same people you and Senator Booker would be helping, if you really meant it. In the words of Malcolm X:
“If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that’s brotherhood. But if you – if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that’s not brotherhood, that’s hypocrisy.”
Rand Paul: Baltimore Violence Is About ‘Lack Of Fathers’ And Morals (AUDIO)
Presidential candidate Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) weighed in on the turmoil in Baltimore on Tuesday, standing with police and blaming the violence on a lack of morals in America.
“I came through the train on Baltimore (sic) last night, I’m glad the train didn’t stop,” he said, laughing, during an interview with conservative radio host Laura Ingraham.
Railing against what he repeatedly called “thuggery and thievery” in the streets of Baltimore, Paul told Ingraham that talking about “root causes” was not appropriate in the middle of a riot.
“The police have to do what they have to do, and I am very sympathetic to the plight of the police in this,” he said.
As for root causes, Paul listed some ideas of his own.
“There are so many things we can talk about,” the senator said, “the breakdown of the family structure, the lack of fathers, the lack of a moral code in our society.”
He added that “this isn’t just a racial thing.”