Credit where it's due: Rand Paul's essay on Ferguson and the militarization of police for Time is almost entirely correct.
Anyone who thinks that race does not still, even if inadvertently, skew the application of criminal justice in this country is just not paying close enough attention. Our prisons are full of black and brown men and women who are serving inappropriately long and harsh sentences for non-violent mistakes in their youth.
Paul is not the only politician to intelligently respond to the events of Ferguson: Elizabeth Warren and Ted Cruz have both denounced police actions. But Rand Paul is the one who worries me, because (minus a little bit of blame-the-liberals rhetoric that seeps into his writing) his Time essay almost exactly echoes the feelings of young progressives. As I've said before, he's dangerous because he's occasionally right. Rebecca Schoenkopf at Wonkette says the article was un-racist enough to preemptively lose Paul's eventual 2016 presidential campaign. I don't know if that's true or not, but I do know that this essay is going to win him a lot of fans on the opposite end of the spectrum.