He's the Republican Party's Howard Dean, right? The independent outsider who speaks his mind, takes unorthodox positions and appears to be afraid of no one. The kind of irreverent, in-your-face candidate young people find very attractive. But do they know about Ron Paul's history of making outrageously offensive, racist comments? Probably not. If and when they do, they'll drop him like a bad check.
Ron Paul is the Bee Gees of politics. And just like young people in the 1970's were clueless that the hip "Saturday Night Fever" disco band had an even greater run as a 60's rock band, they're gonna find out that Paul has a big past as well, albeit a very dubious one. Right now he's benefiting from an upsurge in support following the implosions of the Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain campaigns, as well as the apparent swift failure of Newt Gingrich 2.0. In fact, new polls show him as the front runner in the Iowa caucuses, and a real threat to Mitt Romney, especially if he breaks off and runs as an independent.
But young folks need to go back and read the Ron Paul Political Report and the Ron Paul Survival Report from about 1989-1994 to gain further insight into the radical extremist mind of the candidate who's winning their hearts. Here are some examples of his incendiary remarks:
-"Given the inefficiencies of what D.C. laughingly calls the `criminal justice system,' I think we can safely assume that 95 percent of the black males in that city are semi-criminal or entirely criminal."
-"If you have ever been robbed by a black teen-aged male, you know how unbelievably fleet-footed they can be."
-"Order was only restored in L.A. (after the riots) when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks."
-"We don't think a child of 13 should be held responsible as a man of 23. That's true for most people, but black males age 13 who have been raised on the streets and who have joined criminal gangs are as big, strong, tough, scary and culpable as any adult and should be treated as such."
-"What else do we need to know about the political establishment than that it refuses to discuss the crimes that terrify Americans on grounds that doing so is racist? Why isn't that true of complex embezzling, which is 100 percent white and Asian?"
Paul's also written that black protesters should gather "at a food stamp bureau or a crack house" instead of the Statue of Liberty; that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. "seduced underage girls and boys;" and that people with AIDS "enjoy the attention and pity that comes with being sick."
Over the years Paul has either denied he's made these statements (claiming someone else wrote them) or says they've been taken out of context.
"It's typical political demagoguery," he said. "If people are interested in my character . . . come and talk to my neighbors."
Well, it's hard to imagine any other "context" for these racist rants. And as for whether he's the actual writer or not, the offensive comments were made in his newsletters under his byline. Claiming there was a ghostwriter is a pretty lame excuse for someone whose entire foundation and principles rest with personal liberties and responsibility.
Paul is a 1950's-era Texan who's on record saying he doesn't believe in the 1964 Civil Rights act. He's an angry old man with dangerous views about minorities, civil liberties and how America should be governed. He's not just some awe-inspiring, patriotic Thomas Paine-like elder firebrand who deserves the admiration and respect of our youth. To the contrary, his virulent positions blatantly contradict what America truly stands for.
I know Howard Dean. I've supported Howard Dean. Ron Paul is no Howard Dean. The sooner our young citizens figure this out the better off they, and America, will be.