“I will speak until I can no longer speak,” said U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican. “I will speak as long as it takes, until the alarm is sounded from coast to coast that our Constitution is important, that your rights to trial by jury are precious, that no American should be killed by a drone on American soil without first being charged with a crime, without first being found to be guilty by a court.”
And with that it began. Here are my favorite things about the #StandwithRand phenomenon.
UPDATE: And it worked! After weeks of asking and hours of filibuster, Obama said he will not seek executive power to execute Americans. “I’m disappointed it took a month and a half and a root canal to get it, but we did get the answer,” said Paul.
10. It exposed news bias. If Sen. Paul was a Democrat under Bush, the filibuster against American drone kills would get saturation coverage. The “Bush is Hitler” signs would be out. It took for-e-ver for the media to even notice this one.
9. It flipped public opinion. You could see it slowly gather steam on Twitter as people woke up and then spoke up about the Constitution.
8. Speaking of Twitter, this was a kind of reverse Arab Spring moment with a movement gaining ground because social media was able to get around the censors.
7. Americans discovered that a courageous politician making a stand for life is great TV – better than the network shows.
6. It was suddenly unpatriotic to go to bed, because Rand Paul couldn’t.
4. The parallels to “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” are uncanny, from the corrupt politicians (you can’t get any more corrupt than being against the right to life, as Obama is) to the partisan-above-all mainstream media to the little guys getting the word out on their own.
3. There is even the character of the good politician gone wrong: “I think it’s also safe to say that Barack Obama of 2007 would be right down here with me arguing against this drone-strike program if he were in the Senate,” Paul said.
2. The allegedly soaring rhetoric of President Obama, as he pursues taxpayer-funded abortion and Catholic-church-funded contraception, pales in comparison to the senator from Kentucky.
1. Strip away the dross and you get to the core of the matter: Does the State have the right to abrogate the right to life when it chooses? Obama thinks so. America, increasingly, doesn’t.