Here's the Rachel Maddow show where Rachel Maddow and Rand Paul met head to head. She was trying to get him to admit that he does not support and would not vote for part of the 1964 Civil Rights act. In particular, he doesn't agree with the part that says private business owners can't discriminate based on race. This is incomprehensible to Rachel. He repeatedly expresses that he is not a racist, but she does not grasp how anyone cannot support that law.
I am disappointed that he was unable to answer the question directly. Of course it is taboo for him to say it, political suicide some might say, so that is why he didn't. But the evasions that lead back to the fact of his belief will still cause many to call him crazy. Really he is a reasonable and intelligent man who would help our senate to create better laws than what we have now. In the world he'd fight for, local communities and private businesses could do whatever they chose, even if they were acting from their own racist or other beliefs. He considers that to be free speech.
He brought up the point several times that the way laws are going, business owners may not be able to deny access to customers who are carrying guns. This seems insane to me. How can we as a nation force business owners to admit people with guns? This is the confusion that our laws can lead to. Our system is far from perfect, and to enshrine a law without allowing a new discussion of its benefits and costs is silly.
To me, Rand Paul sounds like a very reasonable legislator, one who would work with others to deliver us excellent laws decided with the care and consideration that went into the beginning of this nation. I wish he wasn't such a rookie on the TV, and that he weren't quite so dry and similar sounding to his father. Obama's going to get crucified, and Paul is going to get scorned out of town. But he is not a racist. Rather, he is a responsible citizen.
There was a time when I thought Rachel Maddow was insightful and balanced, but then she started sounding like a Democrat partisan and I stopped watching. I wanted her to maintain the sensitivity and curiosity that she showed at first. I am disappointed that she wasn't able to take this discussion in a more revealing and educational direction. She simply could not stop battering him to try to get him to say the one thing that he has clearly decided that he will not say. And I'm disappointed that Paul could not be more human and less of a politician. He sounded evasive and was unable to reframe the question adequately. I think he should have focussed on alternative ways in which racism can be discouraged in society, to explain how local communities could make their own laws governing racism, instead of it being a federal law. He was faced with articulating a new vision of America in which we work toward true racial integration without that particular law. Perhaps it is an impossible task, but it is what he is up against. Obama might have been able to do it.
Our world is changing quickly and people have a hard time wrapping their minds around it. We are groupthink creatures, we are designed by evolution to reach consensus in small groups. And we Americans have become intellectually lazy. But let us not allow the commercial media to be the only thing that decides what our tribe thinks. The extent to which this society is run by the media baffles me, frankly, I don't get how so many people can just believe what somebody else tells them. Hallelujiah for the few people in the world who think for themselves! Only those with a bit of playfulness and fluidity in their thinking can begin to facilitate paradigm shifts.
One last thought----why is it that suddenly Rachel Maddow's sexual preference is in the headlines? What does that have to do with anything? I think the sensationalizing her is one way in which the media seeks to discredit him.