Friday, May 21, 2010

Rand Paul’s Right to Refuse Service to Anyone

Tea Party darling Rand Paul kicked a bit of dirt onto himself the other day when he challenged the 1964 Civil Rights Act as “too broad”. Specifically, Paul thinks that businesses should be able to discriminate in who they serve. For those too young to remember, before 1964 it was common for establishments in parts of the country to refuse to serve Blacks. Paul has since been trying the wipe the stupidity from his lips, but it ain’t gonna be easy on this one. He said it, and he believes it.

I can still remember, as a kid on our vacation to Yellowstone, my Dad telling me to keep an eye out for a Best Western Motel, because he knew they would serve Blacks. Even here in California, I periodically still see signs in the windows of businesses that say, “we reserve the right to refuse service to anyone”, and I wonder ‘what the hell are they thinking?’. To be fair, the establishment is often owned by an immigrant who came to this country after 1964, and is minimally educated to the DMV code, much less the US Constitution.

I once approached the immigrant owner of one of my favorite eateries to say, in a friendly manner, that US law granted him no such ‘right’ of refusal, as his sign indicated. He was inclined to brush me off until I stated that if someone complained about his behavior as indicated by the sign, the city had the actual ‘right’ to pull his business license and close him down (here). He removed the sign.

My point is that while Paul may be one racist idiot to many, he is not so far away from the sentiments and ignorance of many Americans – and this should give us pause and concern.

James C. Collier


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Ms. Negro said...

I kind of agree with Ran Paul in a way. What he said was that privately owned establishments that receive no form of gov/state funding should be able to serve whoever they want. He said he believes public establishments should not. Now, don't get me wrong, I know where he's really coming from. He's a racist and deep down (well maybe not even that deep down) he wants to scrap the entire civil rights act. He's not fooling me.

But if I want an establishment to be black only and it's privately owned, I feel like I should be able to do that. And in turn so should they. Don't misunderstand, I don't support Paul or the tea party. I do support people's rights to have who they want in their private establishments.

James C. Collier said...

While an establishment may be privately owned, in serving the public, it also benefits from tax-paying public support - emergency, health, utilities, security, defense, et al, thereby invoking equal protection. Tax funds pay for licensing to serve the public (at minimum). Supporting (serving) certain taxpayers, while ignoring others (but still taking their support) is a no-no.

Anonymous said...


Do you know anything about the changes in immigration law pertaining to 1965? Before the there was a quota..."National Origins Formula" This immigrant would not have been allowed into the US prior to 1965.

Your agenda is pretty clear, I don't recall Collier noting that the immigrant is Asian. Blacks hate immmigrants, yeah I see what you mean lots of blacks in Arizona huh?

I hope you don't seriously blog, your only suited to swimming in shallow waters with your analytical skills. You attack point being made, not the imaginary dots your connecting in your mind based on your own prejudice.


Anonymous said...

Mr. Collier,

I understood what Rand meant, and I am not going to call him racist to cover myself. I believe what he believes and I share same gene expressions as yourself.

The question you have to answer is why would you want to patronize a business that is owned by a person that hates you? You like forcing yourself on someone who despises you?

I work hard for my money and I want to only support those who don't hate me, why don't you feel the same? If you did then you'd be in support of someone telling you straight up that he doesn't like you before you spend you hard earned money to support him. Or would you prefer people to be forced into pretending to like having you around?


James C. Collier said...

R: Your issue is an overriding one for Blacks - that of caring about what is in someone's heart vs. their actions.Heart felt beliefs are a private matter between them, their consciences and their maker. How they interact with me is functional to my immediate opportunity and nothing more. Yes, I patronize those I like, but I also want to insure greater access - this is a tenant of our constitution and I will accept nothing less. The founding right to patronize and the right to serve are not the same.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Collier,

Even if that greater access comes at the cost of lost opportunities to your own people? Whenever a white business denies access, that is another customer for a black business (or another white one that is not of the same mindset).

See the logic, or is the access to "other" establishments that much more important. Like I said support those you like, and like you back and not those who despise you.

The search for greater "access" has a cost doesn't it? It is a zero sum game, you go there to spend your money or over there. Weird that discrimination actually helps black owned businesses, how many black counters could those brothers in NC eaten at instead of Woolworths?? Is the white man's food that much better?? What is behind the need for the approval of whites?? Why do we need their respect?? Do we only feel good about ourselves when the one paying the complement is not us??

Not trying to argue for the sake of arguing, but I am really attacking the mindset of the need for "access" (and "acceptance" by others) even at the cost of your own community's cultural advancement.


James C. Collier said...

R: My desire for access (not acceptance) is constitutional(rooted in the law), rather than policy. What you seek can be achieved through cultural policy practiced (within the law) by Blacks or whoever, should they choose. What I seek, assurance of equal treatment, is not policy but mandates that insure orderly societal (all) advancement, where no one can be both taxed and legally singled out and left behind, regardless what is in someone's heart. IMHO the 14th amendment is as sacred as the 'equality' in the Declaration of Independence. Juris prudence, per the founders, set utilitarian minimums for how poorly we are allowed to treat each other before intervention. The complimentary legal philosophy of law matching your approach is virtue juris prudence, and not at all what the founders implemented.

Research data said...

About a year ago, I broke down this issue in detail, showing 7 ways that Rand paul is wrong. RECAP:

1) Private business have NEVER HAD the right to unfettered choice of who they served throughout much of US History. Government has always regulated said businesses, asserting larger public purposes over private business rights. Civil Rights for blacks is one such vitally important public purpose, going back over a century.

2) Because of segregation in dozens of different states, in thousands of different jurisdictions, a massive legal tangle of civil rights complaints, lawsuits and other unnecessary costs burdened both the business and legal system, crying out for clarity. The Civil Rights Act provided such long overdue clarity and clear legal standards achieved by legislative activity.

3. The anti-discrimination provisions of the Act benefited both whites and blacks and was good for business. Whites were now free to step up the sales of goods and services previously 'forbidden' by law. Blacks likewise were freer to pursue their free market choices. The common sense of both blacks and whites rejected esoteric racial hair-splitting, or "purist" freedom of association theories when there was business to be done and profits to be made. And it required no pious "changes of the heart" from white people.

4. The Act provided indirect protection for blacks pursuing their right to make free market transactions with willing whites from the private violence of whites who objected. Essentially it set the tone, and served notice that free wheeling white violence would no longer be easy, or costless.

5. In addition, many intelligent whites also realized the negative effect Jim Crow had on America's standing in the world, particularly as the Soviets scored effective propaganda points against the United States on the race issue that undermined American credibility to talk about "democracy" overseas.

6. Contrary to the claims of certain conservatives and libertarians alleging how "liberals of the 1960s" "imposed" oppression on white people by banning private discrimination in public accommodations, restrictions on such discrimination by governments via courts, and restrictions based on the legislation of various states outside the South were ongoing decades BEFORE the Civil Rights act of 1964. The claim of unfettered freedom that was suddenly destroyed in the 1960s is a myth.

7. Of all the CRA provisions, Title II banning private discrimination has actually been one of the easiest implemented compared to others like Title VII. Implementation overall, outside a minority of rural die-hard areas was relatively smooth, and really caused no big fuss in white America. It is curious that certain libertarians, heriditarians, HBDers and others are lamenting this particular provision, which white America long ago quickly shrugged over and accepted. The fact that some heriditarian types are still lamenting that a black man two tables down is able to eat his hamburger in peace speaks volumes about their motivation and thinking today in the 21st century.


bob fairlane said...

I wish there were restaurants that openly refused to serve blacks. I would be happier to eat there, and leave bigger tips! I hate it when I have gotten comfortable at a restaurant and received my food, only to be disturbed by loud ebonics screeching "neighbors", who so often end up fighting or destroying property in the course of their shenanigans.

James C. Collier said...

bob fairlane, I publish your comment because I want others to see it and you for what you are.

romansten9 said...

Basically if someine is gay, a certain race or disabled, they can be as rude or obnoxious as they want and still receive service. Gays are suing over things such as wedding cakes. instead of simply taking their business elsewhere. What if ex-homosexuals wanted a cake made to celebrate "ex gay pride day" (or something) and want to hire a gay baker to make the cake? would he be forced to make a cake? I doubt it.

romansten9 said...

If Bob is black, and writing this as a false post to stir racial tensions, that is sad.

But more likely, Bob is not black and really feels this way. That is even more sad. I support refusing service to people that "destroy property" regardless of their race.

Prejudging is typically not good for anyone