9:16 PM 5/22/1996

Newsletter excerpts offer ammunition to Paul's opponent

GOP hopeful quoted on race, crime

By ALAN BERNSTEIN
Copyright 1996 Houston Chronicle Political Writer

Texas congressional candidate Ron Paul's 1992 political newsletter highlighted portrayals of blacks as inclined toward crime and lacking sense about top political issues.

Under the headline of "Terrorist Update," for instance, Paul reported on gang crime in Los Angeles and commented, "If you have ever been robbed by a black teen-aged male, you know how unbelievably fleet-footed they can be."

Paul, a Republican obstetrician from Surfside, said Wednesday he opposes racism and that his written commentaries about blacks came in the context of "current events and statistical reports of the time."

Selected writings by Paul were distributed Wednesday by the campaign of his Democratic opponent, Austin lawyer Charles "Lefty" Morris.

Morris said many of Paul's views are "out there on the fringe" and that his commentaries will be judged by voters in the November general elections.

Paul said allegations about his writings amounted to name-calling by the Democrats and that his opponents should focus instead on how to shrink government spending and reform welfare.

Morris and Paul are seeking the 14th Congressional District seat held by Greg Laughlin of West Columbia. Laughlin lost the Republican primary to Paul, a former congressman and the Libertarian Party's 1988 presidential candidate.

Paul, writing in his independent political newsletter in 1992, reported about unspecified surveys of blacks.

"Opinion polls consistently show that only about 5 percent of blacks have sensible political opinions, i.e. support the free market, individual liberty and the end of welfare and affirmative action,"Paul wrote.

Paul continued that politically sensible blacks are outnumbered "as decent people." Citing reports that 85 percent of all black men in the District of Columbia are arrested, Paul wrote:

"Given the inefficiencies of what D.C. laughingly calls the `criminal justice system,' I think we can safely assume that 95 percent of the black males in that city are semi-criminal or entirely criminal," Paul said.

Paul also wrote that although "we are constantly told that it is evil to be afraid of black men, it is hardly irrational. Black men commit murders, rapes, robberies, muggings and burglaries all out of proportion to their numbers."

A campaign spokesman for Paul said statements about the fear of black males mirror pronouncements by black leaders such as the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who has decried the spread of urban crime.

Paul continues to write the newsletter for an undisclosed number of subscribers, the spokesman said.

Writing in the same 1992 edition, Paul expressed the popular idea that government should lower the age at which accused juvenile criminals can be prosecuted as adults.

He added, "We don't think a child of 13 should be held responsible as a man of 23. That's true for most people, but black males age 13 who have been raised on the streets and who have joined criminal gangs are as big, strong, tough, scary and culpable as any adult and should be treated as such."

Paul also asserted that "complex embezzling" is conducted exclusively by non-blacks.

"What else do we need to know about the political establishment than that it refuses to discuss the crimes that terrify Americans on grounds that doing so is racist? Why isn't that true of complex embezzling, which is 100 percent white and Asian?" he wrote.

In later newsletters, Paul aimed criticism at the Israeli government's U.S. lobbying efforts and reported allegations that President Clinton used cocaine and fathered illegitimate children.

Stating that lobbying groups who seek special favors and handouts are evil, Paul wrote, "By far the most powerful lobby in Washington of the bad sort is the Israeli government" and that the goal of the Zionist movement is to stifle criticism.

Relaying a rumor that Clinton was a longtime cocaine user, Paul wrote in 1994 that the speculation "would explain certain mysteries" about the president's scratchy voice and insomnia.

"None of this is conclusive, of course, but it sure is interesting," he said.