Author: Michael Stone
Contrary to the hype, Republican presidential hopeful Rand Paul is just another standard issue Republican: anti-gay, anti-woman, and subservient to the Christian patriarchy.
Today Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul formally announced his 2016 presidential campaign for the Republican nomination for president, declaring “we have come to take our country back.”
Presumably the “we” Paul speaks of is white, heterosexual, conservative Christian males.
Speaking at his “Stand for Rand” rally in Louisville today, the 52-year-old Paul said:
Today I am announcing, with God’s help and with liberty lovers everywhere, that I am putting myself forward as a candidate for president of the United States.
While it may be disingenuous to conflate liberty with subservience to Christianity, it is a political strategy Paul will deploy in his bid for the 2016 Republican nomination. Yet Paul is quite selective about who is entitled to liberty.
Paul opposes gay rights in general, and gay marriage in particular. In addition, Paul would also deny women the right to reproductive freedom, all in the name of conservative Christian values.
Last month, Paul told a group of pastors and religious leaders at a private prayer breakfast in Washington D.C. that the debate about legalizing same-sex marriage is the result of a “moral crisis” in the country, and called for a Christian revival, proclaiming:
We need a revival in the country. We need another Great Awakening with tent revivals of thousands of people saying, ‘reform or see what’s going to happen if we don’t reform.’
Indeed, for many months now Paul has been quietly running a stealth campaign, meeting with scores of leaders from the Christian right to gain their support for his presidential run.
Previously Paul has worried that same-sex marriage will lead to besitiality, relying upon the same ridiculous slippery-slope arguments used by many simple-minded religious conservatives opposed to same-sex marriage
As for women’s reproductive health, Paul is anything but a libertarian. Paul would deny women basic autonomy over their own bodies. Paul argues that life begins at conception, and when it comes to his anti-choice, anti-woman, conservative Christian “family values” Paul is an extremist. Paul supports fetal personhood legislation that would outlaw all abortion and prohibit contraception, stem-cell research, and in-vitro fertilization.
Perhaps even more disturbing, Paul has publicly stated that parents “own” their children, while making the absurd claim that vaccines cause “profound mental disorders.” While the idea that parents own their children is abhorrent to reasonable individuals, it is a common sentiment among conservative Christians. Paul wants to present himself as something different, but in the end he is just another Republican exploiting the fears and prejudices of conservative Christians for his own political advantage.