Ron Paul on sniper Chris Kyle: Live by the sword, die by the sword

Julie Jacobson AP This Feb. 1, 2012 file photo shows then-Republican presidential candidate, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas speaking in Las … Continued

Julie Jacobson


This Feb. 1, 2012 file photo shows then-Republican presidential candidate, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas speaking in Las Vegas.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Chris Kyle’s death seems to confirm that ‘he who lives by the sword dies by the sword.’ Treating PTSD at a firing range doesn’t make sense.”

–Former Texas Congressman Ron Paul sends a controversial tweet on Kyle, a Navy SEAL and sniper who was allegedly shot and killed by a fellow veteran at a firing range on Feb. 2. Paul cited a verse from the Gospel of Matthew (26:52).

Paul served in the military as an Air Force flight surgeon and the Air Force National Guard during the 1960s.

After a public outcry over his tweet, Paul published a clarification on his Facebook page:

Read more on religion in U.S. politics at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs at Georgetown University.

  • kommisaroff

    It is a very sad story. Violence follows violence, sometimes senselessly, sometims not. Sometimes it follows great violence.
    Chris Kyle, the murdered sniper, shot more than 150 people while on sniping duty. By definition, sniping is killing in cold blood for one’s cause. This note is not to debate the morality of this subset of warfare. It is to recall one of the most famous sniper mages in American history.
    This is Winslow Homer’s “Sharpshooter” (1862), a painting as well as a widely-printed engraving from Homer’s coverage of the Civil War.
    Here are Homer’s thoughts on the craft of the sniper, from the Boston Globe (by Sebastian Smee) from Auguist 7, 2010:
    “Trained snipers were a new phenomenon in warfare, made possible by rifles fitted with long-tube telescopic sights. Most people at the time considerd them heroes of the war effort. But the idea of delivering death in such a cold-blooded manner horrified Homer.
    “In a letter written ih his old age, he wrote: “I looked through one of their rifles once. ” The exoperience, he said, “struck me as being as near murder as anything I ever could think of in connection with the army & I always had a horror of that branch of the service.” ”
    It is a very sad story, now as before, Violence follows violence, sometimes senselessly, sometimes not. Sometimres it follows great violence.

  • mm14

    Help me, Lord!! I finally agree with Ron Paul. It’s downhill from here.

  • Belleau Wood

    Christ preached nonviolence, sure. I’m sure if Christ had Twitter, though, he would preach against callousness and insensitivity towards those in mourning.

  • denis189

    The Paul’s have dedicated themselves to proving an important Conservative position – the Human Race is not evolving.

  • morphex

    Then how do you account for the Pauls?

  • RodVanMechelen

    Progressives on the Left are making political hay of the Sandy Hook murders to attack the Second Amendment. Now progressives on the Right are making political hay of Ron Paul quoting Jesus regarding the murder of Chris Kyle to attack the Liberty Movement. When did quoting Jesus turn into a grave offense?

  • HGH Rampage

    “insane in the membrane”

  • HGH Rampage

    The bible is full of crazy talk, you might want to actually read some of the sick stuff in that book.

  • MDLaxer

    @dinis189: Why do you say this? Because you believe that treating PTSD at a firing range DOES make sense?

  • WmarkW

    Dr. Paul, do you remember learning bedside manner?

    You’re is obviously a lot more qualified than I am to talk about the relationship of PTSD and firearm use.

    But you could have said it a lot better.

  • Sandydayl

    Paul is correct about the dubious decision to treat PTSD at a firing range. As for living by the sword and dying by the sword — well Kyle wasn’t engaged in sniping the day he died — he thought he was helping someone.

  • Semper_I

    It has some cool plot elements, but the prose sucks.

  • practica1

    Well, the gospels of Luke and Matthew are dull, encouraging cooperation and sharing and that sort of thing. Not very conservative, just full of good deeds and altruism…

  • kbamagirlw

    I understand why Paul said what he did. could have put it better , but understandable. Any one should know that is the last place you take a PTSD vet to try to help them. You are asking for the consequences if you do.

  • old guy jim

    I would think this would have produced more posts. It hits on several subjects at once and could start some interesting debates beyond the “liberals suck, conservative are stupid” posts that clog up most forums on the wapo site.

  • justin_timberwolf

    Tweets of Christ would appear in red ink

  • Matts Girl

    Maybe at the moment he wasn’t killing people but Dr. Pauls remarks, I’m sure, were in regaurds to Kyles book that he wrote. I agree with Dr. Paul. According to Kyles book, He wished he could kill more savages. Yes that’s what he called the afganistan people. Most veterans don’t relish in the amount of human beings they killed. Most don’t even like to remember being at war. A good friend has a hard time sleeping at night because he dreams he is killing people in war. It is not normal to love to kill.

  • Matts Girl

    He was quoting Jesus. Are you saying it wasn’t good for Jesus to make this statement either?

  • Alicia Johnson

    When Jesus said something…it was always IN context….when people quote Jesus…often it is OUT of context. For example, when Jesus spoke these words he was telling someone to put their weapon away and not fight….because “Those who live…..etc.” Chris Kyle was not attacking this man at the time of his murder…he was trying to help him…in a Christ-like manner. The quote used by Paul is out of context which is ONE reason why it is offensive. The other reason is that he ASSUMES this murderer was somehow triggered into an episode because he went to a shooting range when he is really just a murdering thief. Lame comments are just lame comments….we all make them from time to time….not a crime…but Paul’s comments are lame…

  • Reverend Josey Wales

    Paul is no more qualified to discuss PSTD and firearms use than you or I am. Possibly less qualified.

  • Reverend Josey Wales

    if you can find agreement with Ron Paul, you are absolutely right.