This post is from May 2011.
[TW for extreme violence and dehumanization]
UPDATED: Here’s video of Paul making his remarks and watching it just makes me livid. What a privileged, selfish never-been-thirsty-or-hungry-one-day-in-his-life jerk:
Listening to him, it makes me to want to say this, too:
If the government creates universal health care, it’s not enslaving the janitor or the person who cleans the hospital. It’s ensuring that they have both jobs and health care.
Here is what Rand Paul, asshole extraordinaire, said about how universal health care and slavery are the same:
With regard to the idea of whether you have a right to health care, you have realize what that implies. It’s not an abstraction. I’m a physician. That means you have a right to come to my house and conscript me.
It means you believe in slavery.
It means that you’re going to enslave not only me, but the janitor at my hospital, the person who cleans my office, the assistants who work in my office, the nurses.
Basically, once you imply a belief in a right to someone’s services — do you have a right to plumbing? Do you have a right to water? Do you have right to food? — you’re basically saying you believe in slavery.
I’m a physician in your community and you say you have a right to health care. You have a right to beat down my door with the police, escort me away and force me to take care of you? That’s ultimately what the right to free health care would be.
So, let’s break this down.
First, NO, Rand Paul. There is no fucking law anywhere that says a damn thing about breaking down doors to force or conscript physicians to treat people. You made that up. It’s a lie.
Second, believing someone has a right to food and water is not slavery. I don’t actually know how to imagine them as related so that I can take down that bullshit. That literally makes no sense to me.
Third, let’s talk about what slavery actually was/is.
Orlando Patterson, author of Slavery and Social Death, says that one is a slave if their condition is permanent, they were and are continually violently dominated, they are alienated from the people and places who make up their family and community, and they are part of an institutionalized system that perpetuates this social death over and over again as new enslaved peoples are brought into it. [There are plenty of other theories about why slavery is a unique position and what differentiates it from other positions of almost no power. This is simply one.]
In real life, slavery meant [TRIGGER WARNING for terrible, disgusting violence]:
[Thomas] Thistlewood [a white overseer in Jamaica in the 18th century] whipped slaves; rubbed salt, lemon juice, and urine into their wounds; made a slave defecate into the mouth of another slave and then gagged the unfortunate recipient of this gift; and chained slaves overnight in ‘bilboes’ or stocks.
From Trevor Burnard’s Mastery, Tyranny, and Desire (pp. 149 – 150)
There’s also this:
I speak advisedly when I say this,–that killing a slave, or any colored person, in Talbot county, Maryland, is not treated as a crime, either by the courts or the community. Mr. Thomas Lanman, of St. Michael’s, killed two slaves, one of whom he killed with a hatchet, by knocking his brains out. He used to boast of the commission of the awful and bloody deed. I have heard him do so laughingly, saying, among other things, that he was the only benefactor of his country in the company, and that when others would do as much as he had done, we should be relieved of “the d—-d niggers.”
Frederick Douglass wrote that in his autobiography.
So, until the Affordable Care Act is modified to include a situation where physicians in this country are removed from their families by violent force, denied the rights of personhood, are forced to swallow someone else’s shit, and can be killed without anyone paying any attention, Rand Paul needs to shut the fuck up right now.
Why white, rich, politically powerful men want to constantly imagine themselves as enslaved is beyond me.
Rand Paul, there is absolutely nothing about your life that resembles anything to do with slavery. Being an eye doctor who sees people whose insurance is covered by the government is not slavery.
If you feel the only way to defeat the notion that health care is a right is by saying that the right to health care will cause doctors to be enslaved, then you are losing your argument. If that is the length to which you must go to justify to yourselves and your constituents why you don’t like something, you need to rethink your position.
Also, finally, Rand Paul – if you hate your job so much because the government is helping people afford your services, quit your job. You, sir, have that luxury. Not just because you aren’t a slave and, in fact, are lawfully considered by the state to be a person, but because you have a rich daddy and so much privilege that you sweat it out of your white man pores.
Finally, p.s., maybe you should ask YOUR ophthalmologist if they feel enslaved since, you know, you have your health care paid for by the government. Your doctor probably does hate it when you knock on their door at 2am asking for an eye appointment and then they must get really pissed when the police force them to do it at gunpoint right then and there. Amiright?
Anyhoo, I’m glad that I could help clear up this confusion. ‘Till next time…