Politics & Policy

Ron Paul in Left Field

Disturbingly, the candidate has been echoing the Left.

In the Republican presidential candidates’ debate on January 7, Rep. Ron Paul said: “I’m the only one up here . . . that understands [that the] true racism in this country is in the judicial system.”

He said this racism has to do with “enforcing the drug laws,” and then added: “They [blacks] get the death penalty way disproportionately.”

Two groups immediately defended Paul — his supporters, and commentators on the left. The former support anything Paul says; and the Left supports anything that Paul says that portrays America as ugly (see, for example, the defense of Paul by the left-wing USA Today columnist DeWayne Wickham, whose columns are regularly devoted to how much blacks suffer from American racism).

Just last month, Paul was asked by a representative of an organization (We Are Change) that holds the U.S. government responsible for 9/11, “Why won’t you come out about the truth about 9/11?”

Paul’s response: “Because I can’t handle the controversy: I have the IMF, the Federal Reserve to deal with, the IRS to deal with. Because I just have more — too many things on my plate. Because I just have too much to do.” It is readily available on YouTube.

Whatever the implications of his cryptic response, when Paul is confronted by the mainstream media he denies that he believes the American government was involved in the 9/11 attacks. But what is undeniable is that Paul, like much of the Left, holds America largely responsible for 9/11 because of its foreign policy: its “occupying” countries all over the world; the sanctions on Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, which Paul and the Left claim killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis; the injustices against Palestinians that America has supported (through its support of Israel); etc.

He mocks the idea that the primary reason for 9/11 was that people of great evil attacked a very good country — because this is the kind of thing the evil do, just as they did on Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese regime attacked Pearl Harbor.

It does seem that the Texas congressman’s description of the American justice system as racist is part of his generally dark view of America.

The claim that America disproportionately executes blacks is a falsehood, disseminated on virtually every left-wing website, from the ACLU’s to all the anti-death-penalty sites. The only way it can be regarded as true is if the disproportion is in relation to the entire population of the country: Blacks make up about 12 percent of the population, and since 1976 about 35 percent of those executed for murder have been black. But this is a statistic that tells no truth because it is meaningless in terms of determining alleged racial bias.

This is very easy to prove. Males make up about 50 percent of the American population but about 99 percent of those executed. Is the American justice system wildly anti-male?

Of course not. The statistic that matters in assessing bias in executions is the proportion of murderers of a given group that is executed, not the group’s proportion of the entire population.

And, here, it is clear that blacks are actually underrepresented in executions.

According to the Death Penalty Information Center, an anti-death-penalty organization, between 1976 and January 2012, 441 blacks (35 percent of the total of convicted murderers) and 717 whites (55 percent of the total) were executed. Given that blacks committed more than half the murders during that time (52 percent vs. 46 percent by whites), if we are to assess racial bias based on proportionality of murderers executed, the system is biased against whites, not blacks.

Because this fact is both obvious and irrefutable, virtually none of the anti-death-penalty sites note it. Instead they focus on the race of murder victims and even the race of prosecutors — in other words, the race of just about everyone except those convicted of murder.

It was bad enough for America and for moral clarity when the views on American imperialism and systemic racism expressed by Ron Paul were confined to the Left. That about 20 percent of Republicans believe such things about America makes one anxious about the future of this country, not to mention about the eternal battle against evil.

— Dennis Prager is a nationally syndicated radio-talk-show host and columnist. He may be contacted through his website, dennisprager.com.


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