It is not possible to change a true bigot’s values. Much of that comes from generational views passed down from parents, grandparents, whatever. But I want to address your recent remarks since you won the Kentucky GOP senate primary.
I would have to agree to disagree with you on pretty much every level. One argument you make is that you prefer to have racist business owners openly advertising their hatred, so that you can make an informed decision. My guess from this statement is that you’ve never been a victim of bigotry, or racism, or true hate. Because if you had been, or if you had been exposed to it at some point or another, you would know that this is an issue that is deeper than simply saying “freedom of choice”.
Racism is a plague, a disease. If you discriminate against someone, they carry that moment with them for the rest of their life. There are emotional scars that build up over time that cannot be erased. If someone is a victim of a hate crime, you are essentially dehumanizing them. Saying, “you are not equal to me. I am human and afforded basic rights and luxuries, while you are subhuman and do not deserve the same as me”. If you expose someone to the ideology and tell them it is the way the world was meant to be, they carry it with them for the rest of their life. They become racists. They breed racism.
The far reaching impact of the civil rights act has been that despite a small fringe that seems to be the apple of mainstream media’s eye, the overarching, GENERALIZED, INSTITUTIONAL racism that once dominated this country is gone (the prison system will take another hundred years or so to catch up, as it is the only institution that still mirrors the racist America of the past).
Maybe people are still racist at home, behind closed doors, or whatever. THAT is their free will. But as far as I’m concerned, I do not want to be exposed to hate. I don’t want to have to explain to my as yet unborn children that yes, there are people out there who will hate you or your friends just because of skin color, or religious beliefs, or some other ridiculous trait that people latch onto. It’s because I don’t want them to know what racism is.
If there is any free will left in our society, if there’s anything that a libertarian and a radical progressive should agree with, it’s that. MY personal freedom is impeded by bigots. And guess what the civil rights act does? It makes sure that MY personal freedom is respected. As a human being, I shouldn’t feel obliged to pick and choose establishments based on their preference for white or blue or orange or magenta skinned clientele.
If I want a piece of pizza, I should be able to walk into a Newport Pizza, or a Pizza Port, and buy it. I should only be forced to choose which slice I buy based on the taste. Of course, places like Wal-Mart and other large conglomerates have cornered the market on poor ethics as well as general merchandise, and I won’t shop there either. But I shouldn’t be faced with outright racism in the decision. It is not something I feel an American should have to deal with on a daily basis in a supposedly just society.
And on another level, I certainly wouldn’t want to be forced to open a restaurant next door to someone who can put a sign on their window that says “whites only”. It would be bad for my business regardless of whether or not my business was open to all.
So Rand Paul, I’m sure you have endured a ton of mistreatment and racism and bigotry on your way through medical school and now into the public eye as a politician. You really have no solid logic behind your problem with the second amendment except the empty promise of “free will” and “personal choice”. My guess is that you’re just a racist, but also a closet anarchist. Because otherwise, you would understand the implications – politically, economically, and socially – of erasing one of the proudest moments in our country’s history.
Yeah, businesses still make racist decisions, particularly in hiring. But in today’s world, no businessperson is too racist to make a dollar. So a white guy who doesn’t really like Asian folks will still have business partners who are Chinese, and a black bar owner who came up through the civil rights movement and has succeeded despite incredible odds probably has served up a beer to the same guy who once threw on a hood and tossed a molotov cocktail through his window. If you want to be successful in business – which is definitely NOT something I aspire to, by the way – your personal values get thrown in the trash during business hours.
SO in the end, Rand Paul, you can’t tell me bout personal choice. My choice is to live in a country where everyone has equal rights, everyone is treated with respect and dignity until they show they don’t deserve it, and is a model for true democratic governments around the world. The civil rights act put us up on a pedestal for most of the civilized world to respect and awe. Don’t confuse veiled racism with shrinking government – it doesn’t serve any good, and weakens the libertarian value system.