Anyone who knows anything about anything knows that Rand Paul isn't really the libertarian messiah he too often claims to be. The way I know this is that Rand Paul introduced a so-called "fetal personhood" law back in 2013. Shortly after suspending his campaign for president, Paul re-introduced the bill in January.
The law would codify that human life begins at the moment of conception -- that is, human life officially begins when a sperm cell successfully enters an ovum. It doesn't matter whether the fertilized egg survives to become implanted on the uterine wall, it's automatically a person, even during the short period of time when the sperm is still intact. This is a human being, they say.
Here's what libertarian Rand Paul won't say out loud. If a zygote, embryo or fetus is a human being will full human rights, wouldn't terminating a pregnancy amount to premeditated murder of a human being, punishable by upwards of life in prison or the death penalty? And the pregnant women who choose to have the procedure would be conspirators in these homicides. No wonder Rand Paul didn't get into the weeds on this issue during the campaign.
Enter Donald Trump.
Being a completely undisciplined blurter of whatever pops into his head, Trump accidentally let it slip that, yes, there would have to be criminal penalties against anyone responsible for performing and undergoing an abortion.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: You’re about to be chief executive of the United States. Do you believe in punishment for abortion, yes or no?
DONALD TRUMP: The answer is there has to be some form of punishment.
Sure there does. That's why banning abortions or declaring fetuses to be fully formed autonomous human beings is so mercilessly dangerous. The punishment Trump alluded to would have to be in accordance with known laws, and those laws tell us that an accomplice to infanticide -- indeed, the person who asked for an abortion is as guilty as the person who performed the abortion.
Rand Paul and Donald Trump want to criminalize and prosecute women for maintaining sovereignty over their internal organs. It's a nefarious back-door plan that begins with the act of declaring fetuses and the like to be fully human with the same rights as birthed humans. Even in cases of rape or incest, fetuses are still people (allegedly), and so having an abortion after being raped is still technically murder under these terms.
Well, it turns out one of Trump's advisers must've said something to the frontrunner about saying the "punishment" thing out loud because Trump walked back his statement to specify that doctors will be punished, but the pregnant women who hire the doctors are victims.
Of course, this is a big fat ruse. Does anyone seriously believe Trump and the GOP will stop with doctors? Furthermore, does anyone seriously believe that misogynistic Trump will somehow shield women from prosecution?
It goes without saying that Republicans might begin by arresting doctors, but it's only a matter of time before a national abortion ban naturally engulfs the so-called conspirators in these "crimes." Already, there are laws on the books that grant legal representation to fetuses, effectively making them wards of the state. Arresting women is the next step. The upshot of small government conservatism, right?
Trump is the only Republican to speak out loud about what the legal ramifications are under an across-the-board abortion ban. And I'm sure his lame flip-flop above won't hold water with other Republicans who are far more radicalized on the issue than Donald Trump.
It's abundantly clear that the GOP is just as interested in returning women to a state of second-class citizenship as they are in protecting fetuses. Put another way: life begins at conception, but ends at birth.