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I begrudgingly respect Rand Paul sometimes. At least he’s kinda consistent in his radically flawed political beliefs. But then there are times when I have to roll my eyes and say, What the fuck? You may have guessed it, but I’m having a WTF moment.

Sen. Paul, in his infinite wisdom, has compared a right to health care to slavery. Yeah…

According to Raw Story, Paul, who is a doctor by trade, said universal health care is tantamount to slavery because that we “have a right to come to [his] house and conscript [him].” But it gets better. He goes on to say that, not only are we enslaving him, but we’re enslaving everyone who works at a hospital or doctor’s office.

And he won’t stop talking!

“Basically, once you imply a belief in a right to someone’s services — do you have a right to plumbing? Do you have a right to water? Do you have right to food? — you’re basically saying you believe in slavery.”

OK, yes, in fact I do believe we have a right to food and clean water. And yet I don’t think that water treatment employees are slaves. Some farm workers might be, though…

But maybe clean water for all is too radical an idea. Let’s think of something less so. Like…I don’t know…the right to a fair trial. We have a Constitutional right to be represented by counsel in criminal matters. Does that mean the lawyer appointed to represent a criminal defendant is a slave? What about the jury? If you are called to jury duty, you have to show up. And the judges! They have to hear all those cases! Slaves, the lot of them!

Not to mention that comparing a doctor – someone who presumably chose his or her profession – to slavery is a completely erroneous analogy. A slave, BY DEFINITION, has no say in the matter. Slaves are property with no rights at all. Doctors are highly trained professionals with a responsibility to treat patients to the best of their ability. And they get paid! I’m pretty sure actual slaves don’t make five or six figures. I’m pretty sure actual slaves don’t have offices or assistants. It’s an insult to actual slaves all over the world.

We can argue until we are blue in the face whether or not health care is a human right (but really, it is). We can argue whether or not universal health care is good policy (but really, it is). But one thing it is not is slavery.

Image credit: rosmary