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Opening Arguments

Root causes

Rand Paul on the violence in Baltimore:

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a contender for the GOP nomination for president, offered his take on the Baltimore riots on Laura Ingraham's show this morning, saying a "lack of fathers" and a "lack of a moral code in our society" were responsible for the "thievery and thuggery."

This is the rightwing root-cause argument, and I don't like it much better than leftwing root-cause arguments, like poverty, income inequality, racism, bad behavior by police, etc. etc. People are responsible for their own choices and should be prepared to live with the concequences of those choices. Rioting and looting are bad behavior resulting from bad choices and should be treated as the crimes they are. Period.

All those other issues, on the left and right, are important to deal witht as we try to make our way to a better society. But talking about them in the context of an ongoing crime spree is not helpful to anybody's cause.