Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ron Paul opposes medal to Dalai Lama

Congress authorized $30,000 to be spend to mint a congressional medal to honor the Dalai Lama, and Ron Paul stood up alone in Congress to oppose this. Here is his speech to the House of Representatives:

Mr. PAUL: Mr. Speaker, with great sadness I must rise to oppose this measure granting a congressional gold medal to the 14th Dalai Lama. While I greatly admire and respect His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and fully recognize his tremendous status both as a Buddhist leader and international advocate for peace, I must object to the manner in which this body chooses to honor him.

I wonder if my colleagues see the irony in honoring a devout Buddhist monk with a material gift of gold. The Buddhist tradition, of course, eschews worldly possessions in favor of purity of thought and action. Buddhism urges its practitioners to alleviate the suffering of others whenever possible. I’m sure His Holiness the Dalai Lama would rather see $30,000 spent to help those less fortunate, rather than for a feel-good congressional gesture.

We cannot forget that Congress has no authority under the Constitution to spend taxpayer money on medals and awards, no matter how richly deserved. And I reiterate my offer of $100 from my own pocket to pay for this medal–if members wish to honor the Dalai Lama, all we need to do is pay for it ourselves. If all 435 of us contribute, the cost will be roughly $70 each. So while a gold medal sounds like a great idea, it becomes a bit strange when we see the actual cost involved.


This is very similar to his opposition to the Congressional medals awarded to Ronald Reagan and his wife:


Jeff said...

Great post. I linked to it from my site in a post titled "From Little Things, Big Things" - linking these little things like constitutional fidelity to bigger issues of blowback.

KineticReaction said...

Thanks Jeff. Great blog and I hope you do well in Colorado.

Ron Paul Shirts said...

Wow, I haven't heard of this yet. I'm so happy I stumbled on your blog. Ron Paul brings common sense to the issues like nobody else and this one bit of legislation proves it if no other does.

Thank you so much for the great post!

KineticReaction said...

Thanks for your comments. I agree completely!