Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rand Paul and the Civil Rights Act question

Rand Paul needs to start doing some homework ASAP. Only one day after his landslide victory, Rand Paul is in a Catch 22. Today on NPR, Rand Paul was again presented with the Civil Rights question.  As a libertarian, Paul is extremely cautious against government’s ability to dictate to the private sector. Knowing this, Robert Sigel from NPR puts forth a hypothetical question about the Civil Rights Act:


Here is the Catch 22. If Paul says he fully supports how the feds forced the private sector to end segregation he loses libertarian street cred, but by only supporting the results of the Civil Rights Act and not the actual legislation, Paul gives the left room to paint him as a racist.

Rand Paul should have been better prepared to answer this question. This isn’t the first time he has encountered it. Here is an interview he did with the Courier Journal editorial board last month.


The left smells an opening here and will push this issue to the hilt. However, I would caution the left against thinking that the libertarian position has no merit here.

Do you remember that guy in Georgia who put up that racist anti Obama sign? I think it is safe to say there are no blacks spending their hard earned money in that establishment. As such, hasn’t this guy circumvented the Civil Rights Act and achieved segregation of his establishment by hiding behind his First Amendment rights? Should we allow government to curtail all our First Amendment rights to shut him down?  If yes, what do we do when he tries something else to keep blacks out? Do we then allow government to regulate all private businesses further? When do we draw a line with trading our liberties to right an obvious wrong?  Perhaps boycotts and the free market can play a role in shutting him down, something to think about.

30 comments:

Anonymous P. Hancock said...

Here is the Catch 22. If Paul says he fully supports how the feds forced the private sector to end segregation he loses libertarian street cred, but by only supporting the results of the Civil Rights Act and not the actual legislation, Paul gives the left room to paint him as a racist. It's not a Catch 22.
It's an inherent weakness of the Libertarian position. Libertarians seem to think that even though they view the government as necessarily wrong, voters will somehow give them a pass on opposing all the things that people are glad the gov't has done. Americans like government. The closest to a coherent position Paul can take is "I like what happened after the government intervened, but not how the government intervened." What sense does this make? I'm sure he's against poverty in the elderly population too, but most people actually want a gov't policy in place to do something about it. Libertarians may not like this, but to present it as unfair to actually know what the possible outcomes of Paul's political beliefs are is very disingenuous.

Anonymous said...

Rand Paul opposes the 1964 Civil Rights Act as an unwarranted federal intrusion on private rights. The man is not fit for public office in the 21st Century. But there is an easy solution to defeating Rand Paul in the general election: every American who supports the Civil Rights Act and the government's right to put an end to racial discrimination should tell every corporation that if their PAC donates to Rand Paul's campaign then they will be subject to a boycott. These issues were settled 50 years ago with the blood, sweat and tears of thousands. We have no need to revisit them. Shut off the bigot's source of money and you shut out the bigot from being elected.

Janelle said...

Clifton, the guy in Georgia isn't hiding his bigotry behind anything. If he wants to limit his own success by being a fool, I'm all for it.

Barry L. Atkins said...

There is no defending this stupidity my friend. Either you answer yes business should be able to do whatever the hell they want or no the fed should be allowed to regulate them. The matter of race can be left out even. Libertarians trust in the "goodness" of people is outstandingly ridiculous.

Anthony said...

I am a 57 year old black man born and raised in Washington DC. I remember quite well the world of Jim Crow segregation and the days of my family planning vacations based not on our interests and budget, but on where we could find hotels that would rent us a room.

I am also a liberal, leftist, pinko commie socialist or whatever epithet is the bon mot du jour.

For me, the issue is quite simple. It is an issue of morality. True, the business owner does not have the "freedom" to deny service to people of a certain race.

Likewise, I do not have the "freedom" to unzip my pants and expose myself to a woman on the subway who is quite free to look away or move to another seat.

From a moral standpoint, as far as I am concerned, the two acts are morally equivalent. If you want an America where both racial discrimination and indecent exposure are tolerated based on a respect for "freedom", then at least your opinion is intellectually honest and I can respect that.

Otherwise, I see this issue as an example of what black conservatives try to deny; e.g. in 21st century America, racism is tolerated on the political right. Perhaps not encouraged, but certainly not unequivocally condemened.

I happen to think laws that prohibit racial discrimination and indecent exposure are good things. Maybe that is a fundamental difference between the left and the right. We on the left see bigotry as an immoral act not to be tolerated in society. Conservatives apparently see bigotry as an expression of freedom. Let me just say I respectfully disagree with that definition of "freedom".

saveliberty said...

Thomas Sowell addressed one part of this question some time ago:

http://www.capitalismmagazine.com/culture/racism/4457-Rosa-Parks-Pursuit-Profit-Racism.html

Samuel Gonzalez said...

Clifrf

The Left will paint Paul as a racist no matter if Jesus Christ himself told him what to say. This is the same deconstruction tactic the Left always uses. He's better off refusing to answer any hypotheticals at all because if he attempts to answer it, he loses no matter what.

What he has to di is refuse to acceot the premise of the question at the onset and call them out for example, "You question is intended to paint me as a racist which I am not. I want to talk about today and how all this big government spending is hurting Kentucky. I want to talk about how the Obama administration policies is hurting small usiness that creates most of the jobs in this country especially Kentucky."

That's how he should answer those kinds of questions. You can't engage in any premiss of the Left on their terms of PC and how they control the language.

The Last Tradition

Anonymous said...

This is the problem with extreme right candidates taking over the GOP. The fact that Rand Paul is opposed to the Civil Rights Act, Medicare, Social Security and the Americans with Disability Act, which was no problem in the primary, will make him unelectable in a general election.

Samuel Gonzalez said...

Cliff

I have to include this which I write about on my blog. A big reason the Left can get away with this tactic is because people on our side in the GOP is too scared to point out that the DEmocrats were the original enslavers of Black people. It was Robert Byrd and Willima Fullbright, Bill Clinton's mentor, who fillubustered the Civil Rights legislation. Bull Conner who sicked the dogs and water hoses on Black marches was a Democrat. Jim Crow laws in the South were written by Democrats. It was the Democrat party who wanted to keep slavery and segreagation the way it was. All these are facts that the GOP is too timid to point out.

Peopel should read Unfounded Loyalty: An in Depth Look into the Love Affair between Blacks and the Democrat Party by Wayne Perryman that's one of the most researched books I've ever read on the true shameful and distroted legacy of the Democrat Party.

Anonymous said...

Maddow should also have asked if he believe the Supreme Court over-reached in 1954 (Legislating From the Bench, as it is widely called) in forcing the voters of Topeka KS to accept something they were already comfortable with.

I'd also be interested in your opinion on whether the SCOTUS had the right to force Topeka to eliminate separate-but-equal against the will of the majority of local voters.

Samuel Gonzalez said...

You see how the Left likes to roll. They love to ask wuestions that aren't relavent to today as if they are the sole abiters of fairness. Why not admit you Lefties that you're all about deception trying to pass yourselves off as people who really care. Most of you are the most miserable guilt ridden people ont on the planet. Bone of you have any kind of core convections which is why if a Liberl gets caught in a scandel it's no big deal becuae you have have no morals in the first first.

You're morality is based on a show of hands as to what is popular that second. But, oh you like to reveal in other peoples misfortune to give yourselfs and your lives some meaning after all.

You think that was the only time Richard Blumenthal lied in his life when he told people he served in Viet Nam? But, that's okay though for the Liberal, no core values to violate once again.

So what's the big deal?

Conservatiaves don't have a monopoly on Racism in this country Liberals are the biggest bunch of racists ever. They just better at faking the funk because they've been practising it for over 400 years.

The Last Tradition

cliff said...

Easy answer - businesses force to desegregate had it coming to them. If they were stupid enough to not see the handwriting on the wall and act on it, then too bad for them.

Desegregation was the right thing to do. It could have come about voluntarily, peacefully, and with good-will towards all. If people will do the right thing, they won't be forced into it.

Lisa Graas said...

Rand Paul doesn't understand/support the Fourteenth Amendment. His base is constantly calling for its repeal....or rather, they say it was never ratified. It's why he fouls up on any number of issues, like the Americans with Disabilities Act, abortion and Gitmo. That's the problem. He doesn't support the Fourteenth Amendment, and the more he flips and flops toward issues that are based on the Fourteenth Amendment, the more he is going to lose his base. As a disabled Kentucky Republican, I refuse to support this man for office. Rand Paul has touted his credentials to AntiWar radio as being a scholar of Von Mises. He is anti-Lincoln and his base is RABIDLY anti-Lincoln. I know because I've been debating them for months here in Kentucky. He only won because he was the Fox News darling. I supported Grayson because he is a SOLID Reagan conservative....but no, the powers that be outside Kentucky wanted to poke Mitch in the eye, and look what we got. Wake up. Smell coffee. Get over the Randgasm and move on. We'll get 'em next time.

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Anthony said...

I would only point out to Mr. Gonzalez that this leftist has no need of a history lesson.

I am quite well aware of the history of the Republican party and the leading role it played in achieving abolition and justice for freed slaves.

Durig Reconstruction, it was Republicans who staffed the Freedmen's Bureaus throughout the south. Locals referred to those staffers as "Radical Republicans" and considered them to be the worst case examples of big government interference from Washington DC. Hmmm... sounds familiar...

After slavery was abolished, the GOP was the frst of the major parties to endorse women's suffrage. Theodore Roosevelt advocated a system of national heath insurance but was never able to get it into a party platform until he ran as a Bull Moose.

To make a long story short, for over 100 years, the more LIBERAL of the two political parties has been the most reliable ally of blacks and others impacted by issues of discrimination.

In 21st century America, it is still the more LIBERAL of the two parties that is seen as mostsupportive of efforts to end discrimination.

Mr. Gonzalez's animosity towards me and others who share my beliefs does not change that fact one iota. Unless of course one wants to argue that Democrats get 85 - 95% of the black vote because we're all stupid or on welfare...

Lisa Graas said...

Anthony, I appreciate your knowledge of history. It's that Republican Party that I seek to preserve..........and it does not in any way resemble the policies of today's left, I'm sad to say.

Lisa Graas said...

FYI, a very well-known Democrat (in Kentucky) informs me via email that much much more is coming down the pike in regard to Rand Paul, so brace yourselves. He gave no specifics.

Anonymous said...

Wrong, Rand Paul.
This country as spent too many years and too many lives fighting so everyone could go to school, eat lunch ,vote and live where ever they please regardless of race.

We aren't going to let white folks like you turn the clock back by with some theory that a white lunch counter owner has the right to refuse service to blacks because his "property rights" come first.

What Planet do you come from , Rand.

Samuel Gonzalez said...

Anthony

Blacks are tied the Democra Party because they are socialized to do so. Malcom X said that a Dixiecrat is nothing but a Democrat. That was the party that orginally enslaved Black people in this country. That is the legacy of the Democrat party and it's only through their deceitful revisionist history that 99% of Blacks believe that all those slave owners were Republicans. That's why they always have to pull the race card to reinforce the false perception over and over again. Democrats know that all they have to do is point the finger and say, "He a racist." and "We're looking out for you and the job is done. And if a Black person tries to break out the mode, their immediately labeled a "sell out", "uncle Tom" and back to the mental plantation they go.

That's why the biggest threat to Liberals is the Black Conservative. They must be destroyed at all costs by any means neccessary because if they can connect and get Black folks to be at least independant in their thinking, then the Denocrat Party is sunk and the house of cards come tumbling down.

Fuzzy Slippers said...

This country is self-segregated as is. Neighborhoods, for the most part and outside the suburbs (either in cities or further out in the country), are "black" or "white." Our big cities are segregated with Little Italys, Chinatowns, and in Boston, Southie for the working class Irish. No bill, act, or law is going to change that while democrats are allowed to perpetuate racism and encourage poverty (the two things that keep us segregated, entrenched even).

Jersey McJones said...

In a way, there's really no such a thing as a "private business." As I put it on my blog yesterday:

"Private businesses may be privately owned, but they do not exist in a private vacuum. They use public roads, water, and other services. They employ people educated in the public schools, treated in the public hospitals, serviced by the public largess. They are dependent on the state for protection, for the enforcement of contracts, for the value of the currency with which they transact. A business can not exist without a society around it. Business is a dependent product of civilized society - and not nearly as much the other way around."

Libertarianism is the simple-minded, convenient polticial ideology of teenagers. It's not for serious adulte. The Tea Party have shown themselves to be nothing more than the equivilant of adolescent racists.

JMJ

Jersey McJones said...

In a way, there's really no such a thing as a "private business." As I put it on my blog yesterday:

"Private businesses may be privately owned, but they do not exist in a private vacuum. They use public roads, water, and other services. They employ people educated in the public schools, treated in the public hospitals, serviced by the public largess. They are dependent on the state for protection, for the enforcement of contracts, for the value of the currency with which they transact. A business can not exist without a society around it. Business is a dependent product of civilized society - and not nearly as much the other way around."

Libertarianism is the simple-minded, convenient polticial ideology of teenagers. It's not for serious adulte. The Tea Party have shown themselves to be nothing more than the equivilant of adolescent racists.

JMJ

Clifton B said...

Anonymous P:

Libertarians do not view government as always wrong. They view it as a necessary evil. As such they prefer a minimum amount of government and a maximum amount of freedom. Given how heavy handed the democrats were with passing HCR, you should be able to see why Kentucky went with Paul.

Fuzzy Slippers said...

@ Jersey McJones, you wrote: "The Tea Party have shown themselves to be nothing more than the equivilant of adolescent racists."

I find this interesting. Can you give me three specific examples of racism from the Tea Party? Or one?

Clifton B said...

Anonymous @ 9:58:

You are correct the CRA is settled law. So why are you getting so worked up over the opinion of a possible Senator? He was asked his opinion on the law and he gave it.

John Morris said...

"I have to include this which I write about on my blog. A big reason the Left can get away with this tactic is because people on our side in the GOP is too scared to point out that the DEmocrats were the original enslavers of Black people. It was Robert Byrd and Willima Fullbright, Bill Clinton's mentor, who fillubustered the Civil Rights legislation. Bull Conner who sicked the dogs and water hoses on Black marches was a Democrat. Jim Crow laws in the South were written by Democrats. It was the Democrat party who wanted to keep slavery and segregation the way it was. All these are facts that the GOP is too timid to point out."

This is very much a problem caused by Republicans and Libertarians themselves. A coward dies a thousand deaths and out failure to actively involve ourselves in full honest debate on this subject is what's given the left it's race card.

Are there Republican racists, of course, but at it's root we have much less to fear by going into this subject.

I invite a bunch of fairly knowledgeable libertarians and Classical Liberals to start a deep in depth website on the real history of state and violence enforced racial discrimination--much of which still goes on today.

Wanna talk about what happened to Pittsburgh's Lower Hill? Or the construction of the Cross Bronx Expressway which or almost all of Robert Moses's massive highway projects which always magically found minority communities?

Mindy Fullilove estimates that something like 1,900 black communities were destroyed during the period known as "urban renewal", a trauma quite likely responsible for much of the later chaos we saw in these areas. Interestingly enough some of them were somewhat integrated. In fact, urban America in most cites was far more integrated before the wonderful programs of the "Great Society".

Wanna talk about the consent decree signed by The New York City Housing Authority in which it admits to creating separate housing projects for blacks and Hispanics than for whites--a practice only ended perhaps in the mid 1990's?

John Morris said...

This is an easy example to find and it's likely the tip of the iceberg. From the Legal Aid Society Website.

Davis v. New York City Housing Authority,
90 Civ. 628 (RWS) (S.D.N.Y.)
Nature of Claims: This class action challenges racial discrimination by the New York City Hous¬ing Authority (NYCHA) in the assignment and transfer of public housing applicants and tenants.

Background: In July 1992, the plaintiffs, NYCHA, and the United States Department of Justice entered into a Consent Decree certifying a plaintiff class and permanently prohibiting NYCHA from engaging in various forms of housing discrimination. In asking the court to approve the Decree, NYCHA admitted that it had engaged in practices “that had the effect of discriminating against Black and Hispanic applicants” and that “these policies were wrong.” See Davis v. New York City Housing Authority, 278 F.3d 64, 82 (2d Cir. 2002), cert. denied, 536 U.S. 904 (2002). The Consent Decree permanently prohibits NYCHA from:

•adopting and implementing any tenant application, selection, assignment, transfer plan, or policy or process that gives preference to applicants or tenants on the basis of race, color, or national origin;

•refusing to rent or otherwise making dwellings unavailable to applicants or persons requesting transfers because of race, color, or national origin;

•making statements with respect to the rental of dwelling that indicate a preference, limitation, or discrimination because of race, color, or national origin;

•representing to applicants or tenants that, because of race, color, or national origin, certain developments are not anticipating vacancies when such developments are, in fact, anticipating vacancies;

The Decree required NYCHA to adopt a new Tenant Selection and Assignment Plan (TSAP) and afforded relief for up to 2,190 victims of discrimi¬na¬tion at 31 “Affected Developments.”

Current Status: In 2002, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed an injunction prohibiting NYCHA from using a “Working Family Preference” (WFP) at 14 housing projects where discrimination occurred in the past. The court held that 20 housing projects had been segregated on the basis of race by past discriminatory practices, and that the WFP would cause significant delays in desegregation at 14 of those projects. The plaintiffs continue to monitor enforcement of the Consent Decree.

No. Persons Affected: Approximately 900 families of color who were denied admission at an Affected Development were permitted to transfer into one of those projects as a remedy for past discrimination. Approxi¬mately 8,000 families reside in one of the 14 housing projects where the WFP has been enjoined.

Reported Decisions: Davis v. New York City Hous. Auth., 1992 WL 420923 (S.D.N.Y. Dec. 31, 1992); Davis v. New York City Hous¬. Auth., 839 F. Supp. 215 (S.D.N.Y. 1993); Davis v. New York City Housing Auth., 940 F. Supp. 80 (S.D.N.Y. 1996); Davis v. New York City Hous. Auth., 1997 WL 407250 (S.D.N.Y. July 18, 1997); Davis v. New York City Housing Auth, 1997 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18111 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 13, 1977); Davis v. New York City Housing Auth., 166 F.3d 432 (2d Cir. 1999); Davis v. New York City Housing Auth., 60 F. Supp. 2d 220 (S.D.N.Y. 1999); Davis v. New York City Housing Auth., 2000 U.S. App. LEXIS 2746 (2d Cir. Feb. 23, 2000); Davis v. New York City Housing Authority, 103 F. Supp. 2d 228 (S.D.N.Y. 2000); Davis v. New York City Housing Authority, 278 F.3d 64 (2d Cir. 2002), cert. denied, 536 U.S. 904 (2002); Davis v. New York City Hous. Auth., 2002 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23738 (S.D.N.Y. Dec. 11, 2002).

The underlying idea behind all statism is the idea that weak, irrational, greedy, stupid humans must be controled to stop them from doing all kinds of bad things.

Controlled by who? The government officials and employees who are given these powers can certainly be just as human.

Jersey McJones said...

Fuzzy Slippers,

If you don't think the Tea Partiers are mostly racists, then you are truly living in a river in Egypt. Look at the nomination of Rand Paul, that gathering coming up with Tancredo and Gheen. The color of the protesters! Get real. What do they mean, they want their country back? Back from whom? obama and the Dems won the election fair and square. Nobody took the country away - the country VOTED for them! The tea partiers means, "I want my country back from that black guy." Sure, you can say they think he's liberal - but he's not that liberal - and he's not a Muslim, and he's not a communist or socialist, and he's not taking over the countrym, and he's not really changing all that much at all. So there's only one thing that explains the hatred iof the man, and that's his race. Period.

JMJ

Fuzzy Slippers said...

Hi Jersey, thanks for answering me. I think I'm still confused, though. You seem to be saying that the Tea Party is racist because a lot of them are white people? How does that work? Any group that consists of mostly white people must be racist? How does that work on, say, MSNBC (where none of their anchors or hosts is black, even on the weekends!). And is the inverse automatically true, too, that any group composed of mostly black people is automatically racist against whites?

Or are they racist because they want a government that more closely adheres to the Constitution? What makes you think they mean take their party back from "that black guy"? I mean specifically. I've been really confused by people saying these exact things. What actual evidence do you have that the Tea Party is racist? I mean besides the fact that they are white and don't like the liberal agenda of the president and the democratic Congress. I don't think that makes someone racist, not really. Do you?

And actually, he is a socialist. I don't really see how saying that makes someone racist, either. I mean it's pretty obvious that he's socialist (one of the main things that socialists want is for the government to run industry and to, to quote the president, spread the wealth around and determine when "someone's made enough money"), well, actually, he's a hybrid socialist/communist/19th century progressive, but "socialist" covers it pretty well. He's not the only socialist progressive around, Pelosi is one, too, and so is Hillary Clinton. They're white. The Tea Party disagrees with them, too, and on the same grounds. Is it still racism in that case?

Isn't it at all possible that people in the Tea Party just don't like the things this president is doing (and you really do need to pay attention if you think he's not changing that much)? It seems to me that they didn't much like Bush when he was into big spending, big government plans, either. He's white. And I know that they all (or at least any Tea Partier worth his or her salt) thought Jimmy Carter the worst president of the second half of the 20th century and among the 10 worst in our nation's history, in large part because of his weakness in foreign policy (BO is weak in that area, too, in case you didn't notice that either). But again, how does that make anyone racist? Or is it only racist when you disagree with weak foreign policy and big government spending and entitlements when the sitting president is black? If so, what were they when they opposed some of similar, though less egregious, things when Carter was president? Or Clinton, for that matter. No one wanted the healthcare takeover during his first year, either. Now, tell me, was that racist? Or is it possible that it was the actual idea/agenda that people opposed? At least then. And if it was then, why not now? The agenda is similar and rooted in similar ideology, but now all of a sudden it's all about what color BO is? How does that work? Really, I'm curious.

It sounds to me that this is simply a means of shutting down conversation and of hearing what people are saying. Is that possible? Or do you have some evidence--again, besides the fact that they are conservative and he is a far left liberal and many of them are white--last time I checked "racist" does not mean "white person" or "person who prefers smaller government." Or has the definition of racism changed recently?

Jersey McJones said...

Fuzzy, I said a lot more about why I think what I think about the TEa PArtiers than that. Get real. And I'm sorry, but anyone who thinks Obama is a socialist - what with Chicago School Milton Friedman crowd running around the White House - is truly one ignorant person.

JMJ

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