Saturday, May 14, 2011

Whatever your feelings are for Ron Paul...

posted by The Vidiot @ 11:33 AM Permalink

Love him, hate him, whatever, I don't care. What I do care about are gross misrepresentations of anybody's viewpoints.

The media are reporting, after this interview of Ron Paul by Chris Matthews, that Ron Paul wouldn't have voted for the Civil Rights Act. The media narrative that they're trying to construct is that Ron Paul is a stealth (or not so stealth) racist. They know full well that the easiest way to discredit anybody these days is to call them a racists or an anti-Semite or some other sort of bigoted fool.

Paul's real stand on the Civil Rights Act is, judging from what he actually said, that governments are the ones that first implemented policies of segregation and racism. He simply wants to repeal those laws that systematically segregate people on the basis of race, ethnicity, etc., and not codify so-called non-discriminatory laws. He trusts that people will do the right thing and they don't need any laws to tell them to do it. What the media is trying to do is go back in history and say oh well, Ron Paul is advocating a return to our racist past. What Ron Paul is really doing is he's looking towards the future. He knows the world wouldn't return to a racist past.

Bottom line, the laws that the US government has passed in the form of the Civil Rights Act did little to end segregation and discrimination. And here's where it become complicated.

Culturally, the American people are not racist. The few who are are irrelevant because racists are generally ostracized by civil society. What is true is that despite whatever laws the government wants to pass or has passed, American apartheid is still very much alive in the United States. Black and other minority groups remain spatially and geographically isolated and, as most sociologists would agree, hyper-segregated from the rest of US society. Hyper-segregation is a term to describe how black and minority groups are segregated -- not just spatially, but culturally, economically, politically, and socially -- from the dominant society. And don't forget, that it's the American government that created laws that segregated and discriminated against people and what Ron Paul understands is that their laws to end their mistakes did not curtail the problem. It was the American people, not the beloved nation state that ended segregation. It wasn't casting votes that ended it, it was the will of black, white and women revolutionaries that took to the streets and demanded government end their racists and discriminatory ways. It was the people that ended it. Not the government.

Ron Paul gets this and so other critical thinkers like Chomsky and Zinn, et al. They, Chomsky, Paul, et al, advocate the end of government interference, whether it's creating racist laws or laws to ameliorate racist laws, because the American people can handle it from here. The government can go home.

When we look at the so-called objective nature of government policies, the managing of all our human social institutions, we can see, under closer inspection, that government laws are far from neutral and objective. In fact, under the cloak of objectivity, lies overt racism. In our educational policies, we see eurocentric, white-dominant, bourgeoisie values that take precedent over values that exist in the many different heterogenous populations and minority groups in the US. We see white-dominant values in our legal system over the values of our hispanic, black, native american and women groups. We see laws of all kinds situated within all our institutions that instill dominant white values that uphold the dominant class at the expense of all other groups. There is nothing objective or neutral about any of our laws.

These laws support an obvious dominant class in the name of democracy, but democracy is far from what we have. The proof is who commands the dominant institutions and how those laws and ideas and values perpetuated by government economic elites make laws that serve their own interests and legitimate their own power. As its very essence, government cannot pass laws that are against its own self- interest. Its preservation is its first priority; the preservation of the status quo and the preservation of the commanders of the dominant institutions.

Though Ron Paul's ideas are progressive, they're not perfect, but at least they are a start.

But those ideas sure as hell don jibe with the media narrative.

And that's my point. Take him or leave him, I don't care, but at least be honest about what they guy says.

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At 5:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

RP is a minimalist, at least as far as he thinks how the government should respond to issues of civil rights violations.

As it is, you are fudamentally right, it is not the government's business to protect the civil rights of one minority (or majority) group more than any other.

If the government eliminates its own civil rights-abusing laws, then -- even if it takes a bit of time -- the population generally follows suit.

As it is occuring, we are now a nation that is being regulated to death.



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