Well, maybe he'll be more subtle in the future.
Here's one of the transcripts of what Paul did and didn't say, according to The Wall Street Journal:
"What I've always said is, I'm opposed to institutional racism, and I would have--if I was alive at the time, I think--had the courage to march with Martin Luther King to overturn institutional racism, and I see no place in our society for institutional racism," he said in response to a first question about the act.
"You would have marched with Martin Luther King but voted with Barry Goldwater?" asked an interviewer.
"I think it's confusing in a lot of cases in what's actually in the Civil Rights Case (sic)," Paul replied. "A lot of things that were actually in the bill I'm actually in favor of. I'm in favor of--everything with regards to ending institutional racism. So I think there's a lot to be desired in the Civil Rights--and indeed the truth is, I haven't read all through it, because it was passed 40 years ago and hadn't been a real pressing issue on the campaign on whether I'm going to vote for the Civil Rights Act."
Here's his take on the public vs. private property portions of the act:
Paul explained that he backed the portion of the Civil Rights Act banning discrimination in public places and institutions, but that he thinks private businesses should be permitted to discriminate by race.
"I like the Civil Rights Act in the sense that it ended discrimination in all public domains, and I'm all in favor of that," he said. "I don't like the idea of telling private business owners. . . ."
And then, in another interview:
Interviewer: But under your philosophy, it would be OK for Dr. King not to be served at the counter at Woolworths?
Paul: I would not go to that Woolworths, and I would stand up in my community and say that it is abhorrent, um, but, the hard part--and this is the hard part about believing in freedom--is, if you believe in the First Amendment, for example--you have too, for example, most good defenders of the First Amendment will believe in abhorrent groups standing up and saying awful things. . . . It's the same way with other behaviors. In a free society, we will tolerate boorish people, who have abhorrent behavior.
Paul has said elsewhere that his preference for ending segregation would be through boycotts, shaming, and other forms of peer pressure.
What Rand Paul should have said, of course, is that he loves, no, he actually adores the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in its entirety, including the punctuation, and that he sleeps with a copy of it under his pillow.
That is the only sensible answer for a politician to give.
The distinction between "government" and "private" property is lost on most voters.
Private property owners are free to say "No shoes, no shirt, no service". Others have signs up that state that they reserve the right to refuse service for any reason.
If it is your castle, you really should be able to refuse entry to anyone you want to refuse: left-handers, Okies, blacks, whites, Palin supporters, or people who think To Kill A Mockingbird is overrated.
And the left-handers, Okies, blacks, whites, Palinites, and Harper Lee fans should be free to boycott your ass and encourage all their friends to do the same.
As far as the effectiveness of the CRA of '64 goes, my public school classes at A.W. James Elementary school in Drew, Mississippi, were de facto segregated until 1969.
My doctor's office in Merigold, Mississippi, had segregated waiting rooms (hello, Westerfields !) until the Doctor retired sometime in the mid-1970's.
What changed everything? Simple economics. Boycotts. Shaming. The same remedies that Paul (foolishly, but truthfully) proposed in his interviews (as if he could go back in time to '64, and vote as a two-year-old senator). People generally don't move to places that discriminate unfairly just for the hell of it. And they eventually stop shopping there.
What would have worked better for Paul would be to ignore the Bill's attacks on property rights and say "I support the goals of the Act, if not some of the wording. I especially support the provisions that ended the Democrat party's vile segregationist practices. When this bill came to Congress, there were Democrat politicians standing in the front doors of public schools and universities. Racist, Yellow-Dog Democrats were setting attack dogs loose on citizens who merely wanted to use public transportation that their taxes paid for."
Then remind the country that when the Act came up for a vote in '64, three-fourths of the "nay" votes in the House Of Representatives came from Democrats.
Remind the country that 80% of the "nay" votes in the Senate came from Democrats, and that those voting "nay" included Al Gore's Daddy, plus a former Ku Klux Klan Community Organizer named Robert Byrd, who, last I checked, is still a Democrat Senator representing the subsidy hawgs of West Virginia.
Moving onward through the fog ! !
Here's the British Petroleum portion of the Rand Paul/George Stephanopoulosformerclintonadvisor interview:
STEPHANOPOULOS: But you don’t want to get rid of the EPA?
PAUL: No, the thing is is that drilling right now and the problem we’re having now is in international waters and I think there needs to be regulation of that and always has been regulation. What I don’t like from the president’s administration is this sort of, you know, “I’ll put my boot heel on the throat of BP.” I think that sounds really un-American in his criticism of business. I’ve heard nothing from BP about not paying for the spill. And I think it’s part of this sort of blame game society in the sense that it’s always got to be someone’s fault. Instead of the fact that maybe sometimes accidents happen. I mean, we had a mining accident that was very tragic and I’ve met a lot of these miners and their families. They’re very brave people to do a dangerous job. But then we come in and it’s always someone’s fault. Maybe sometimes accidents happen.
STEPHANOPOULOS: So, you believe that the regulation of BP was adequate?
PAUL: I don’t know exactly what the regulation of BP is. I think there’s hundreds of pages of regulation of drilling in the ocean and I think most of that’s justified. I think we’ll have to figure out from this accident, is there anything that could have beend one to prevent it? What can we do in the future to make sure that it doesn’t happen again? So, I think we use logic. We use objective facts. And yeah, we try to go forward. Nobody wants this to happen. I love the beautiful beaches down in the panhandle of Florida and nobody wants to see oil washing up on those white sand beaches.
All of that sound plenty vague to me, but if you pull the "shit happens" quotes out of context, and ignore the point he's trying to make about our Nutcase-In-Chief trying to demagogue the issue, you won't hear anything except a defense of BP.
I would still trust Rand Paul to protect the beaches of Kentucky.
As an officer in the Libertarian Party, I can't endorse any non-Libertarians, but I can give some advice.
Someone in Paul's campaign needs to go to the Louisville, Kentucky, Border's or Barnes & Noble, and get Dr. Paul a copy of Saul Alinsky's Rules For Radicals.
Then Dr. Paul needs to go to that Trappist Monastery in Kentucky, the one where Thomas Merton lived, and spend two weeks there, studying Alinsky's book, the playbook that the Statists have used since the day it was published.
And maybe he'll never play into his opponents' hands again. He'll use every interview, every position statement, and every editorial to attack, attack, attack, even if the attack has nothing to do with the topic at hand. That's how the game is played.
Here's a video of Barack Obama picking his nose: