In the case of Rand Paul, that world seems to be found in a 1997 science fiction movie starring Ethan Hawke and written by Andrew Nicool, titled Gattaca. Senator Paul used this movie as an example of where he fears we could be headed, but in doing so, seems to have copied excerpts directly from the movie’s Wikipedia page while attempting to explain the plot.
While giving a ridiculous speech in Virginia at a “Christian” school where he said that advances in science coupled with abortion rights might possibly lead to eugenics (the process by which undesirable traits in human beings are eliminated through purposeful genetic manipulation), Senator Paul seems to have directly plagiarized Gattaca’s Wikipedia page.
Here’s an excerpt from Paul’s speech:
“In the “not-too-distant-future,” eugenics is common. And DNA plays a primary role in determining your social class.”
And here’s something taken directly from Gattaca’s Wikipedia page:
“In “the not-too-distant future”, liberal eugenics is common and DNA plays the primary role in determining social class.”
Now, I get if you’re trying to describe the plot of a movie that there might be a few similarities on verbiage and of course the subjects used. Heck, your order of events in how you’re describing a situation might be nearly identical to another person’s. But it’s extremely rare (if not impossible) for someone to accidentally use the exact same words, in the exact same order, as someone else. And it wasn’t this one instance — he did it again… and again… and again.
“Due to frequent screenings, Vincent faces genetic discrimination and prejudice. The only way to achieve his dream of being an astronaut is he has to become what’s called a “borrowed ladder.”
“Due to frequent screening, Vincent faces genetic discrimination and prejudice. The only way he can achieve his dream of becoming an astronaut is to become a “borrowed ladder.”
“He assumes the identity of a Jerome Morrow, a world-class swimming star with a genetic profile said to be “secondary to none,” but he’s been paralyzed in a car accident.”
“He assumes the identity of Jerome Eugene Morrow, a former swimming star with a genetic profile “second to none”, who had been injured in a car accident, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down.”
“Jerome buys his identity, uses his DNA — his blood, his hair, his tissue, his urine — to pass the screenings.”
“Vincent “buys” Jerome’s identity and uses his “valid” DNA in blood, hair, tissue, and urine samples to pass screening.”
Seriously, when it gets to this level of plagiarism, there is no way it’s a “coincidence.”
And as BuzzFeed points out, the Wikipedia page had not been changed after Paul’s speech to try to “frame” him or add his words to the description. All of the logs show that the page was up with these contents before Paul’s speech, proving that either he or whoever wrote his speech took directly from it.
I mean, it’s ridiculous enough that the Kentucky Senator used a 16-year-old science fiction film’s plot as some lame attempt to stir up fear while giving a speech. Then he just compounds his absurdity by plagiarizing the movie’s Wikipedia page.
Is this the level Republicans have now stooped to—plagiarizing the Wikipedia pages of science fiction movies?
It’s sad enough that he was trying to claim that advances in science, coupled with abortion rights, could possibly lead to eugenics. But to plagiarize a movie’s Wikipedia page as part of your blatant attempt to stir fear in a crowd of people? That’s really sad.
I wouldn’t be shocked if Paul hasn’t even seen the movie. I could see someone just telling him about the plot and him viewing that as a great example to perpetuate this asinine claim that somehow science and abortion will lead to eugenics. Then, without actually watching the movie, he decided to pull his “thoughts” on the plot directly from what he read on Wikipedia.
It’s like I’ve said many times before, “It’s getting sad when too often I can’t tell if a story is real, or if it’s from The Onion.”
And this is a great example of just that.