Ron Paul’s war against civil rights

Earl Ofari Hutchinson | 5/17/2011, 2:36 p.m.

Paul was outraged during his short lived presidential bid in 2008 when he was dinged as a racist when the above, as well as embarrassing newsletters that were either written by Paul or authorized by Paul on his sites in the 1990s (along with racially front loaded inflammatory quips that bashed blacks), was cited. The Paul-attributed digs and insults called blacks chronic welfare grifters, thugs, lousy parents and said they are inherently racist toward whites. Paul vehemently denied that he said any of those things.

The quips appeared in his officially approved newsletters. There is no evidence that he wrote a correction or issued a clarification. The jury then and now is still out on whether those views truly represent his feelings or not. He loudly protests that he’s not a racist now because he has to if he is to have any credibility as a serious presidential contender.

But an anti-civil rights position linked directly to the old property rights canard is another matter. It fits neatly into the stock libertarian argument that the best thing that government can do is stay out of the affairs of private citizens and private business. That is the root of America’s woes — bloated spending, soaring deficits, congressional gridlock, crippling energy dependence, massive tax disparities, the drug plague and even America’s wars are the result of top heavy government interference and intrusion in the lives of Americans.

Unlike Donald Trump, Paul is a politician who knows how to get and sustain attention. And knocking civil rights when all else fails is always good for that.

Earl Ofari Hutchinson is an author and political analyst.