Dr. Peikoff said, in part: “Ayn Rand herself fled communism in Soviet Russia. She knew what life was like in a totalitarian society, whether Nazi or Communist, Russian or Cuban. She passionately defended the rights of man against any collective, and — with the Founding Fathers of this country — upheld each individual’s absolute right to personal liberty.
“To send a child to rot in the prison of Cuba in the alleged name of his welfare and well-being is criminal hypocrisy.
“To send him there in the name of the father’s rights is absurdity, since there are no parental or other rights in Cuba.
“To send him there because the father wants him back would be monstrous even if it were true. What kind of father would want to see his child broken in mind and starving in body?
“The liberals want Elián returned to Cuba, because they regard the difference between the United States and Cuba as ‘merely a difference of political opinion,’ merely a matter of ‘how you define freedom.’ In other words, as statists themselves, they see nothing objectively wrong with Cuba.
“As to the conservatives, some, especially the Cuban exiles, know the truth about Castro and understand Elián’s plight. But they are hard pressed to defend him in the right terms: if one exalts ‘family values,’ one sounds insincere in separating a son from his father. Besides, if religion is the conservatives’ base, how good an answer can they give to any opponents? In America, where religion is a private matter, faith and mystic visions should not be brought into public issues.
“Only Ayn Rand defends the independence of the individual and the supremacy of his reason against all comers, whether ‘friend’ or enemy, father or stranger, state or church.
“The motivation of Clinton in this issue, besides his liberalism, is his unreal desire to leave behind a ‘legacy’ of alleged peace, peace with a Caribbean dictator pursued by stomping a six-year-old boy. Clinton is a traitor to the moral values of America, as the Republicans always insist, but his treason is not fornication or perjury, but this vile assault against Elián, and the worldwide appeasement of dictators from which it comes. If only the Republicans had the guts — and the ideas — required to offer an alternative.”
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