Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Rand Paul and Segregation

I don't think Rand Paul is actually a libertarian; he chose to make a keynote address to the poorly named Constitution Party, a dominionist political party. By Dominionist, I mean that they intend to make America into, essentially, a Christian Theocracy. I don't know how you square that with Libertarianism.

That said, even if he were a genuine libertarian who believed that businesses should have the right ot discriminate, he's still kind of an idiot. Michael Lind, over at Salon, has written a piece on what segregation was actually like.
On rereading "Black Like Me" with Rand Paul's controversial comments in mind, I was struck by how very few truly public places there were in the apartheid South. Employers, subdivisions, stores, restaurants, gas stations, hotels -- Rand Paul would have allowed all of these to be segregated to this day because they are privately owned. According to this disingenuous theory, in the segregated South everyone, black or white, should have had a right to work, eat and sleep at the small-town post office or police station, because they were public agencies -- but no right to work, eat or sleep anywhere else.
Yeah, that does seem like a definition designed to protect racism.

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