ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) - Should gays and lesbians be allowed to serve openly in the U.S. military? The audience applauded Texas Rep. Ron Paul's answer.
"We don't get our rights because we're gays or women or minorities. We get our rights from our creator as individuals. So every individual should be treated the same way," Paul said.
"If there is homosexual behavior in the military that is disruptive, it should be dealt with. But if there's heterosexual sexual behavior that is disruptive, it should be dealt with.
"So it isn't the issue of homosexuality. It's the concept and the understanding of individual rights," he said.
Paul called the current "don't ask,don't tell" policy, implemented during the Clinton adminstration, "a decent policy."
What do you think?
–CNN.com writer Kristi Keck
No Gays in the miltary.The current policy is good.
Thsi was the best and second-most insightful comment in the debate. The first was Dr. Ron Paul's comments about 'first strike' rationale. Dr. Ron Paul proved that he's the best candidate for all gays and anyone else's 'alternative lifestyle', and also anyone who wants: Peace, Prosperity, and Liberty! :)
Hes right, why should people be treated as groups? Each person is his own.
Absolutly, the best response by any candidate. Individuality is the long forgotten aspect of humanity. We long to label and segregate. The truth is we are all infinite, you cannot box and label that.
Go Ron Paul
I thought that was Paul's most confusing answer of the night. He seemed to imply that it should be repealed with his comments that all disruptive sexual behavior should be dealt with appropriately, but he also said that the policy was fine as it stands. However, homosexuality is, unfortunately, the issue as it stands.
Paul is dead on.
Rep. Paul's response to the issue of homosexuals openly serving in the military, was fantastic. Both homosexual and heterosexual behavior can be disruptive and should be dealt with. It, as Rep. Paul said, "isn't an issue of homosexuality" but its an issue of respecting the rights of each individual, respecting others boundaries. The applause that Rep. Paul received was well deserved.
How awesomely consistent are his answers to policy questions?
I have to agree with Ron Paul here. Issues like homosexuality in the military only serve to waste time and attention on an issue that has very little relation to running a country. If the behavior is disruptive, we should leave it up to the military commanders to make their own judgment as such. There is too much “from the top” legislation coming out of Washington as it is.
Ron Paul is right, homosexuality and heterosexuality which is disruptive, should be dealt with.
Ron Paul is dead on!! Treat all equally!!!
A great response. Homosexuals that cause disruptive behavior should be dealt with the same way that heterosexuals that cause disruptive behavior. There is no reason to differentiate between the two if we truly are all created equally.
Spot on. Liberty is the most important thing, and Ron Paul advocates for it. People should be treated equally.
I just want to add that I'm not one of the Ron Paul supporters who assault internet sites like youtube - I've been a huge fan of Obama for the past few months, but if Ron Paul can make it, I think he'll get my vote.
I would like to hear Ron Paul describe his plans to address poverty in America, though.
Ron Paul is correct. It's not an issue of group rights it's an issue of personal behavior and responsibility. Like he said, if someone's homosexual activity is being disruptive it needs to be dealt with. If someone's heterosexual activity is being disruptive it too needs to be dealt with. That goes for any behavior. If it is disruptive it needs to be dealt with.
Ron Paul has addressed an issue that few others seem interested in, the issue of individuality. Homosexuals have been used by Democrats as a means to an end, and Paul decided to deal with an issue that they care about by treating them as human beings.
WONDERFUL response. His responses were ABSOLUTELY consistent and to the point. The same cannot be said at all for Romney, Giuliani, or McCain.
On a side note, CNN, why did he barely receive any talking time? He was also the only Republican against the war. But CNN anchors keep stating all the GOPers are for it. They're lying... please clarify to all your viewers of this error.
I think he's right on the issue, and I believe that he could have had a greater chance to further expound ALL of his ideas had he been gives the same amount of time as the "top" candidates. If you're hoping for a fair debate, might as well give everyone the same quantity of time to present their perspective. That’s just common sense!
Ron Paul understands that private behavior that does not interfere with the conduct of military operations is – private behavior.
I agree with Ron Paul until he agrees with the policy. What a hypocrite. How about a don't ask, don't tell policy for heterosexuals? That way, gay servicepeople wouldn't have to hear about their sex lives. Wouldn't that treat every individual equally?
Ron Paul's beliefs in our inalienable rights and the Constitution shined again, and his applause was well deserved. This man is America's last hope.
It's not about whether the soldier is homosexual or heterosexual. It is about how they conduct themselves in their sexuality. Misconduct by both should be dealt with. Soldiers should be judged on how well they do their job, not their sexual preferences. If sexual misconduct occurs, whether homosexual or heterosexual, it should be handled with a firm hand.
God, I wish we had somebody like Ron Paul to vote for up here in Canada.
But unless homosexual soldiers are allowed to openly have boyfriends or girlfriends (fiances, spouses, etc), the way that straight soldiers can, then they're not being treated as individuals with the same rights. And under don't ask don't tell, they can't. Therefore, the current treatment is not "the same."
I think that what he said is good, but implying that the current policy is similar to what he said is misleading.
Once again, Ron Pauls word is clearly understood and accepted by the american people! Go Ron Go!