When the Ron Paul story first broke, I had no intention of writing anything about it, because first of all, I had no idea what to write. I read Ron Paul’s Tweet; thought it was deplorable; then went on with my day. But then, the story continued. Following justifiable public outrage, Ron Paul Tweeted again. This time, I couldn’t let it go.
Following the point blank shooting and murder of the most prolific American sniper, Chris Kyle, Ron Paul issued his statement on the tragedy. He Tweeted:
“Chris Kyle’s death seems to confirm that ‘he who lives by the sword dies by the sword.’ Treating PTSD at a firing range doesn’t make sense.”
Despite this awful, and insensitive statement in regard to an American hero, I was willing to overlook Ron Paul’s error. Everybody knows that Paul is sort of crazy anyway, right? Well, in the wake of the obvious public outrage, Paul issued a second Tweet:
“As a veteran, I certainly recognize that this weekend’s violence and killing of Chris Kyle were a tragic and sad event…My condolences and prayers go out to Mr. Kyle’s family. Unconstitutional and unnecessary wars have endless unintended consequences. A policy of non-violence, as Christ preached, would have prevented this and similar tragedies.”
Let’s break this down. Ron Paul is essentially saying that because Chris Kyle “lived by the sword,” that it was inevitable he would die by it. In this statement, Paul is implicitly condemning Chris Kyle because of his military service. In addition to this, Paul’s Tweet makes a mockery of Chris Kyle’s service. I don’t care what you think of war, denigrating someone like Kyle–a defender of western freedom–is beyond the pale.
Moreover, going on to half-apologize, then invoke Christ to validate his ideology is absurd. Paul goes on to claim that if we practiced non-violence, “as Christ preached,” this could have been avoided. He acts as if violence stems singularly from war; and if we practiced peace–as if war is never necessary–all of this could be avoided.
Ron Paul not only doesn’t know how to apologize, he seems to forget that that the origin of violence is within man’s heart. War does not create violence; violence creates war. Ending war will not stop evil; it will not stop mental illness–which is a contributing factor in Kyle’s murder–the notion of plain “peace” is deeply ignorant.
Ron Paul has said some asinine things in the past, but this, coupled with his callousness and ignorance really startled me. Ignorance is certainly not limited to one side of the aisle.