Republican Senator Rand Paul has been accused of plagiarising an anti-abortion speech from the Wikipedia page of sci-fi fiilm Gattaca.
He was making the speech at Jerry Falwell's Liberty University in support of Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli.
The rip-off was noticed by MSNBC host Rachel Maddow who compared bits of the Wikipedia entry to Rand Paul's discourse on abortion and eugenics.
Gattaca is a 90s sci-fi movie about a dystopian world where genetic discrimination is widely used.
A few examples demonstrate Maddow's point:
- Paul said: "In the movie Gattaca, in the not-too-distant future, eugenics is common and DNA plays a primary role in determining your social class."
- Wikipedia read: "In the not-too-distant future, liberal eugenics is common and DNA plays the primary role in determining social class."
The Kentucky senator continued summing up the film in a few sentences lifted from Wikipedia:
- "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".
- Wikipedia read: "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.'"
Talking of Vincent, Paul said:
- "He assumes the identity of Jerome Morrow, a world-class swimming star with a genetic profile secondary to none, who's been paralysed in a car accident".
- Wikipedia read: "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 paralysed from the waist down."
Commenting on the incident, Maddow said that Paul's speech "was totally ripped off of Wikipedia".