A reminder of how extreme the Republican Party has become, and a quick elaboration on Charley’s post with a bit of video that clarifies Kentucky Republican Senate nominee Rand Paul’s position that private businesses, like for example restaurants and movie theaters, should legally be allowed to exclude people based on their race (or, presumably, religion — no Jews, no Catholics — ethnicity — no Irish, no Poles — or whatever else they choose).
Will Senator Scott Brown and candidate for Governor Tim Cahill, both of whom have also, like Paul, associated themselves with the Tea Party movement, support or denounce this position?
UPDATE: Paul’s campaign has subsequently added fuel to the fire by releasing a statement that says he will not vote to repeal the Civil Rights Act of 1964 — but does not renounce the position he stated above that private businesses should have the right to deny service to people based on race or whatever other characteristic they want.
FURTHER UPDATE (by David): Unable to handle the media firestorm, Paul (actually, a spokesperson: the candidate himself has yet to say it – Bob) has now abandoned his libertarian “principles” and stated, contrary to what he said in the clip above, that he actually does think the federal government can appropriately ban private businesses from discriminating. Awkwardly, this comes at the same time as a Kentucky blogger digs out a 2002 letter in which Paul makes it far clearer than on Maddow that he actually does (or did) think private businesses should be free from government regulation when it comes to whom they serve.
Should it be prohibited for private entities such as a church, bed and breakfast or retirement neighborhood that doesn’t want noisy children? Absolutely not.
Decisions concerning private property and associations should in a free society be unhindered. As a consequence, some associations will discriminate.
A free society will abide unofficial, private discrimination – even when that means allowing hate-filled groups to exclude people based on the color of their skin.