Government can't create moral society, Paul saysSubmitted by retrorepublican on Wed, 07/04/2007 - 07:53
Published July 4, 2007
Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul shared his views this week on a variety of controversial issues. Here are his responses to questions posed by the Herald-Journal.
SHJ: You're against abortion. How do you counter the view that's the government telling a woman what she can or can't do with her body, infringing on personal freedom?
PAUL: There are two lives. You have a right to privacy in your home - I don't want any cameras or any invasion in the home. Your home is your castle in a free society. That doesn't give you the right to kill a baby in the bed. If there is another life involved, and that crib happens to be the uterus, the issue is not telling the woman what to do. The issue is whether there's another life. I tell my libertarian friends that if you have a live fetus, and it's 4, 5, 6, 7 pounds, and it has a heartbeat, and brainwaves, moves and sucks its thumb, and you kill him, you're committing an act of violence. So, it's a little more complicated than saying a woman can do what she wants with her body, and that's why it's been difficult for a lot of people to sort this out. The one thing I say is that we should repeal Roe v. Wade, and it should be a state issue.
SHJ: You have a huge online presence. Should the government regulate the Internet? If so, how?
PAUL: No. There are lines that can be crossed. If people are defrauding individuals, or telling lies, then the government would have a right to intervene. And that's only after the fact, and you say, 'Someone has done this to me' â€¦ I'm for no taxation and no regulation (of the Internet), and that's a pretty risky political position because there's some pretty nasty stuff out there. But the First Amendment is out there to protect controversial speech, not non-controversial speech. I certainly don't want the United Nations involved. One day, I'm sure they'll want to be.
SHJ: This is an issue close to Spartanburg: What can or should be done to combat youth violence, particularly when it comes to keeping guns out of the hands of children?
PAUL: This is not a federal matter. You could just tell me a story of somebody having been killed by a knife. What are you going to do to keep a knife out of the hands of children because they might hurt each other? The weapon itself isn't the problem. It's the breakup of the family, the culture and the society that's so violent. But that's only going to be solved when you have a more moral society, and a more family-oriented society.
SHJ: Then, how do you do that? How do you fix society?
PAUL: The government can't do that. Government's not a social worker. Government is to make sure that if there is injury to one person from another, that they punish that individual and stop it from happening. But to be responsible for a complete moral education for all of society â€¦ It might turn out that divorce is the single most important feature. What are we going to do? Force people to stay together? No. That's a reflection of the society. Freedom is not going to work unless you have a moral society. And that raises a serious question because certainly we can't force that type of morality on a society. It's like the same notion that we're going to force our values on the people of Iraq because they didn't have a good democracy, but we're going to go over there and start bombing them and killing them until they act good like Americans. The federal government can't force families to come together and treat their children better. That is a spiritual issue, and the government's responsibility is mainly to maintain order and punish violence. And almost all that responsibility falls on the local government.