Rand Paul: We Must Demilitarize the Police
Senator Rand Paul published a very good piece for Time earlier today. Here’s just one short snippet:
Given the racial disparities in our criminal justice system, it is impossible for African-Americans not to feel like their government is particularly targeting them.
This is part of the anguish we are seeing in the tragic events outside of St. Louis, Missouri. It is what the citizens of Ferguson feel when there is an unfortunate and heartbreaking shooting like the incident with Michael Brown.
Anyone who thinks that race does not still, even if inadvertently, skew the application of criminal justice in this country is just not paying close enough attention. Our prisons are full of black and brown men and women who are serving inappropriately long and harsh sentences for non-violent mistakes in their youth.
A fair number of people have been wishing for strong words like these from President Obama and were downright dejected by the seeming blandness of his statement earlier this afternoon.
But considering the histrionics from conservatives every time Obama says anything about race, I really didn’t expect anything like the sort of statement he made in the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin shooting.
It’ll be interesting to see if those same conservatives say anything at all about Paul’s comments since they usually seem so certain that racism is well and truly behind us and that it’s Obama and liberals who keep “playing the race card.”