Ron Paul Believes in Liberty for Some but Not All

Ron Paul taking questions in Manchester, NH

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There are some of presidential candidate Ron Paul’s Libertarian beliefs that I’m all for. For one thing; I agree concerning most of his foreign policy; I think we should bring our troops home from many of these permanent bases we’ve made all around the world. It seems to me, our foreign policy has been guided by our own self-interest in oil and not to the security of our allies, or even our own.

Secondly, I agree mostly about his stand on drug policy. I do know that the current drug policy is a failure; anyone who doubts that, I challenge to give me one good instance that it’s working.

What I don’t agree with is his bias concerning personal liberty, for some but not all Americans. Mostly I refer to gay rights but his view on other minorities concerns me a great deal.

In a newsletter, Ron Paul back in August 2003 stated “Ridiculous as sodomy laws may be, there clearly is no right to privacy nor sodomy found anywhere in the Constitution.”  He went on to say that “There are, however, states’ rights — rights plainly affirmed in the Ninth and Tenth amendments. Under those amendments, the State of Texas has the right to decide for itself how to regulate social matters like sex, using its own local standards”

Most recently, Ron Paul told Candy Crowley in an interview on CNN “State of the Union” “If you try to improve relationships by forcing and telling people what they can’t do, and you ignore and undermine the principles of liberty, then the government can come into our bedrooms,” He then went on to say “And that’s exactly what has happened. Look at what’s happened with the PATRIOT Act. They can come into our houses, our bedrooms our businesses … And it was started back then.”

It sounds to me as though Ron Paul is all for personal liberty, including the right to privacy when it comes to heterosexuals but not for gays. For gays, such as the Supreme Court ruling he pointed out; Lawrence vs. Texas, the Justices were at that time Activist Judges going against the state’s rights of Texas.

Why is it that Ron Paul believe it’s the right of a state to go into someone’s home and arrest them for a consensual sex act between two adults but yet he defends the rights of others to the privacy of their homes?

Newsletters from the past that allegedly were written by Ron Paul that he now is trying to disclaim, has shown his disregard for the rights of black people and other minorities. It seems that Paul’s view is somewhat distorted and leans heavily in favor of personal liberty for white people who are heterosexual but then has a bias view of rights for anyone who doesn’t fit into that narrow category.

I’ve met my share of Libertarians in my day and many of them are decent people who strongly believe in the principles of personal liberty. But Ron Paul’s view of personal liberty is tinged with racism and homophobia and is limited because of that prejudice.

Would not true Libertarianism not also be the same when it comes to the rights of a gay couple to have sex in the privacy of their own homes? Or that black people have the right to the same protections under the law as white people, or is by giving them that same protection; such as in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which he disagrees with, somewhat different from what it should be for white people?

If he walked into a black restaurant and was asked to leave because of the color of his skin, would that be okay to him?  Would it be okay to limit his children’s or his grandchildren’s education to certain poorly funded schools because they happen to be white? Would that be called “Liberty”?

What he doesn’t seem to understand is that some laws are meant to protect the liberty of everyone, and that allowing a business or a state or any other entity the right to arrest, to block, to limit the freedom of any individual, is not liberty but a limit to liberty.

There is one thing I do know; I do not want a president that pledges to uphold the Constitution yet feels that same Constitution should not protect my rights as a gay man, or the rights of other minorities. I want a president who represents me and all Americans without limitations.

What is even more frightening to me, at the prospect of a Ron Paul’s presidency is an endorsement he got from the Reverend Phillip G. Kayser.  His Iowa chairman, Drew Ivers, recently said on Ron Paul’s website “We welcome Rev. Kayser’s endorsement and the enlightening statements he makes on how Ron Paul’s approach to government is consistent with Christian beliefs,”

Reverend Kayser is known for his belief that homosexuals should be prosecuted with the death penalty.

It’s very clear to me that Ron Paul’s so-called Libertarianism is just a big cover up of someone who is a bigot and as president; he would not represent all Americans, just those who happened to fit into the category of being white heterosexuals. The rest of us would be on our own it seems because a would-be President Paul would not feel our Constitution protected the rights of gay people and other minorities.

I only hope that other Libertarians will see Ron Paul for who he is and realize that this is not the man they want to represent them and their views. It’s true that none of the other candidates seem to represent the views of Libertarians but this man is surely not the right one to represent them either.

3 Responses to Ron Paul Believes in Liberty for Some but Not All

  1. Hey Fid,
    Great post. Right on target. I have often wondered why it is that Libertarians advocate Personal Liberty to the exclusion of the poor. I see alot of value in many of their stances. If they would just take their ideas and combine them with some compassion; we might have a party I could support.

    Anyway;
    “Ridiculous as sodomy laws may be, there clearly is no right to privacy nor sodomy found anywhere in the Constitution.” He went on to say that “There are, however, states’ rights — rights plainly affirmed in the Ninth and Tenth amendments. Under those amendments, the State of Texas has the right to decide for itself how to regulate social matters like sex, using its own local standards”

    I would point out to Ron Paul that the right to have sexual relations at all is not in the Constitution. And yet it is.

    http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights_transcript.html
    Amendment IX
    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be
    construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    Therefore; as the Constitution does not forbid Sodomy; and it is not specifically mentioned as a right; It falls under the purvue of this amendment

    Ron Paul shuffles the issue off onto the States by invoking the 10th amendment:

    Amendment X

    “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor
    prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to
    the people.”

    Here is the quote:

    “In a newsletter, Ron Paul back in August 2003 stated “Ridiculous as sodomy laws may be, there clearly is no right to privacy nor sodomy found anywhere in the Constitution.” He went on to say that “There are, however, states’ rights — rights plainly affirmed in the Ninth and Tenth amendments. Under those amendments, the State of Texas has the right to decide for itself how to regulate social matters like sex, using its own local standards”

    Mr. Paul would like us to believe that any right not mentioned in the Constitution reverts to the States for a decision as to it’s validity. This is Horse manure.

    First; the 9th amendment says nothing; zero, about States Rights.
    Second; As you can read; the 10th amendment gives powers to the States or the people respectively. This would indicate that powers that are relavent to the running of a State would revert to their judgement but that the rights of the people (outside of that purpose) would revert to the people to judge for themselves; not that the States would make any judgements they chose and leave a few for the people.

    This is the meaning that I percieve in these two Amendments when read together.

    As an example: The Federal Government decides that it will no longer decide whether the people have a right to have sex.

    Now each of the Fifty States is supposed to decide what’s right for that State.

    Only if the State chooses not to make a choice; is the decision left up to the individual citizen as to whether he/she should have sex or not.
    Does this sound right to you?

    What about this one: let’s say that a wind of reason blows through DC and the federal Government decriminalizes Marijuana. It would then fall into the same catagory as Sodomy.
    Not disallowed or specifically reserved; the right to posess Marijuana would now fall to each State to decide for itself.
    So now the State gets to decide whether or not they will recognize the Constitutional right to possess Marijuana?
    This seems wrong- un-constitutional.
    The people whose right and duty it is by nature to take unto themselves all rights not specifically mentioned and acknowledged by the Constitution;
    The Federal Government having decided it is not a crime; therefore causes the possession of Marijuana to revert to an un-named right of the people.
    How is it that such a question should ever fall into the jurisdiction of the individual states?
    It seems to me that the Federal Government; being the original author of the Constitution; and as the President and other Federal officials swear to Protect, Uphold, and Defend the Constituion; the States would be acting in opposition to the word and intent of that document by initiating or failing to remove all Prohibitionary Marijuana Laws from their books.
    Why is this wrong?

    “Newsletters from the past that allegedly were written by Ron Paul that he now is trying to disclaim, has shown his disregard for the rights of black people and other minorities. It seems that Paul’s view is somewhat distorted and leans heavily in favor of personal liberty for white people who are heterosexual but then has a bias view of rights for anyone who doesn’t fit into that narrow category.

    I’ll bet he deosn’t support personal liberty for poor white people.

    • avatar fidlerten says:

      angryman,
      I think Ron Paul is using the same argument that White Southern Plantation owners used before the Civil War, when they referred to their “State’s Rights” to own slaves. A state is not a sovereign nation unto itself and any law they have on the books cannot override federal law. There are certain things federal law allows states to decide on their own, such as traffic laws, but even then they must not override any federal law.

      Ron Paul is simply using Libertarianism to make it okay to discriminate against certain groups of people. The one thing our U.S. Constitution does over all other things is to protect the People from being treated unequally and that includes any state law that can be interpreted by our federal courts as being unconstitutional in the way their law treats any group of citizens.

      States rights is about allowing the states a certain amount of leeway on how they wish to implement fair and balanced laws of the people of that state. Any state law is overridden by federal law if it is shown to treat certain people unfairly.

      For instance look at a certain group of people that everyone, even conservatives believe we should protect; the mentally challenged. Now if a state had a law on the book that said that all mentally challenged people should not be allowed to go into a restaurant that the owner put up a sign saying “Retarded People Stay Out”, that would not be acceptable to any decent person of conscious and there would be an immediate outrage and it would not be limited to liberals.

      So why should a state then be allowed to ignore and protect any business from discriminating against black people or gay people or any other minority in the same way? Or by enacting laws that treat those different groups of people as second class citizens or as criminals for who they are? That’s why we have the Constitution; to protect the rights of everyone, no matter what someone thinks is the “State’s Rights”.

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