Gary Johnson Talks ISIS, Refugees, Black Lives Matter and Marijuana Legalization

Reason.com:

The once and future LP nominee?

Gary Johnson, the former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico who ran for president in 2012 briefly as a member of the GOP and eventually as the nominee of the Libertarian Party, has made his first public remarks following last Friday’s terror attacks in Paris, in the form of a press release and an exclusive interview with Reason.

Johnson opposes both boots on the ground and drones strikes on Syria, thinks sharia law is the root of Islamic terrorism, and believes the US should take in its “fair share” of refugees but declined to state an exact number. He also thinks we are at the tipping point toward marijuana legalization and indicated he intends to run for president again in 2016 on the Libertarian Party’s ticket.

Excerpt from the interview:

Reason: The Wall Street Journal and Politico immediately pronounced that the attacks in Paris exposed why someone with libertarian policies should and could never be president. “The election should be a referendum on keeping America safe,” said the Journal, implying that a libertarian could never protect the country because he would be too busy respecting civil liberties. How would a libertarian president keep the country safe?

Johnson: Libertarians are going to stand for liberties, you bet! The only way a libertarian will act military is by being attacked, and we’ve been attacked. I oppose boots on the ground, but you can’t rule out military intervention categorically.

Reason: What does that mean? Drone strikes?

Johnson: When it comes to drones, I think it makes a bad situation even worse. We end up killing innocents and fueling hatred as opposed to containing it. It just hasn’t worked. We need to educate ourselves on the root causes of this, which is Islamic terrorism and the ideology of sharia law. In this country, we’ve become so politically correct that in the name of freedom of religion we have allowed sharia law and its adherents to advance. We need to differentiate between freedom of religion and the politics of sharia law. Freedom of religion, absolutely. But if you’re talking about allowing sharia law that runs contrary to the US Constitution, that is ideologically the war that we need to take on.

Reason: Are there any examples of sharia law being implemented, or even proposed to be implemented, in the United States that you can point to?

Johnson: There’s been a movement in state legislatures to pass “American laws for American courts.” I didn’t get that, but now I do. In Great Britain, they tried to allow sharia law side by side with British law and found it to be unworkable. They said, “If from a religious freedom standpoint, you want to govern your life by sharia law then so be it.” We can’t allow that. Sharia law doesn’t treat women equally. Iran, a country governed by sharia law, executes thirty homosexuals a month. It cannot be allowed to coexist in America. Just like we were right to put (Kentucky clerk) Kim Davis in jail for not adhering to the law, we can’t allow sharia practice to exist in the name of religious freedom. It’s not constitutional.

Reason: Your former party, the Republicans, are dead set against allowing Syrian refugees to enter the country. Republican governors (and at least one Democrat) say the risk of ISIS terrorists slipping in through the process is simply too great. Chris Christie went even further than Ted Cruz by saying he wouldn’t even admit Christian children. We have currently agreed to let in 10,000 by the end of 2017, but some Democrats want to raise that number to 65,000. What would your refugee policy toward Syrians be?

Johnson: We need to take our share, and I’m not sure what that share should be. I’d like to come up with a formula based on our coalition partners. I wouldn’t say zero, but I don’t know if 65,000 puts us in the category of “our fair share.”

And, later in the interview:

Reason: One last question, are you planning on running for president in 2016?

Johnson: Well, I hope to. I hope to be the Libertarian nominee. That’s my intention barring famine or flood.

Reason: When will you announce your candidacy?

Johnson: There’s no advantage to making it official given what I’ll call the clown-car. Given the attention that’s being given to the Republican side. Let that stuff sort it self out and there’s plenty of time for the general election. I thought we’d have done a lot better last election cycle, so I’m not under any delusions. We are suing the Presidential Debates Commission. Eighty percent of Americans say they want another choice and they have no idea why there isn’t another choice. We think at the heart of that is the Commission and we’re suing them on antitrust grounds, on the basis of the Sherman Act, that they collude with the two major parties, that they are a business, and we think the media has also signed similar documents when it comes to televising the debates.

Read the whole thing here.

10 thoughts on “Gary Johnson Talks ISIS, Refugees, Black Lives Matter and Marijuana Legalization

  1. Rod Stern

    I don’t think he really answered the questions. If he’s against boots on the ground as well as drone strikes, what kind of military intervention does he not rule out? His answer ignores military intervention entirely and talks about sharia law. Then when asked “Are there any examples of sharia law being implemented, or even proposed to be implemented, in the United States that you can point to?” he gives no examples at all, just continues to rant against Sharia law. When asked how many Syrian refugees he would allow into the US he does not give a number, just some non-specifics about “our share” and some unnamed “formula.” How about some real answers, Governor?

  2. Rod Stern

    Phil Gerber comments on IPR’s facebook page:

    “He mentions “Sharia Law” as the root of all earthly evils. Would that be the Maliki, Hanifi, Shafi’i, Hanbali, or Jafari version of Shariah? And could he explain the differences? And does this statement also mean he’d shut down Jewish and other religious courts currently operating in the US? Or only Muslims? It’s funny that in countries that get picked on the most for “Sharia Law” and oppressing women (Saudi Arabia and Iran) as Johnson does here, there are more women graduating from four-year colleges in those countries than men. It is disappointing to see such ignorant and bigoted drivel coming form the putative nominee of my party.”

  3. Cody Quirk

    Phil is full of shit, or a troll that pretends to be ‘Libertarian’.

    Does the US and the Western world use medieval style means of execution and punishment for infractions such as drinking alcohol, joining another religion, or even speaking their mind? Do they prohibit women from driving or dressing liberally? Do they even criminalize and violently suppress those with same-sex attraction?

    Sharia Law in general is not only wrong for the US and the western world, it is anti-Libertarian and a despicably oppressive, backward system that should’ve been left behind in the middle ages the same time the majority of the West did away with the legal systems and oppressive superstitions of the dark ages.

    Any Libertarian that buys into Political Correctness and wants to allow a totalitarianistic, anti-women religious system to have legal immunity or even legal precedence in this country and elsewhere is no Libertarian at all, but a Fifth Columnist.

  4. Rod Stern

    Perhaps Mr. Quirk will answer the questions that Gov. Johnson danced around, especially:

    Reason: Are there any examples of sharia law being implemented, or even proposed to be implemented, in the United States that you can point to?

  5. Wang Tang-Fu

    I believe Mr. Knapp addressed that already on the other thread:


    “Interesting, but not really that surprising. It wasn’t until 1993 that the last of the 50 states got rid of their (non-Islamic — three guesses which religion the underlying presumption came from) laws holding that if you were married it couldn’t be rape, and some maintained lower penalties or higher standards of proof even after that.”

    “Is it really that surprising that a 71-year-old judge might lean toward the old Christian-based presumptions rather than the new secular standards when evaluating a case where no crime is being charged but rather a set of claims in pursuit of an order compelling/forbidding some action?”

    In any case he was overruled, and there has been nothing approaching a serious proposal to make Sharia the law of the land in any US state, Faux News alarmism notwithstanding. Europe has an order of magnitude more Muslims than the US and a very different political tradition and order. Comparisons between the two are thus faulty and unrealistic. Mr. Gerber is entirely correct.

  6. Phil Gerber

    Ah, I see we have another graduate of the Fox News College of Islamic Jurisprudence.

    Tell us, Mr. Quirk, if ‘the’ Sharia bans women from driving, can you please explain why in 49 out of 50 Muslim-majority countries it is legal for women to drive?

    “should’ve been left behind in the middle ages the same time the majority of the West did away with the legal systems and oppressive superstitions of the dark ages.”

    – Quite an ironic suggestion, considering that it was the legal principles introduced by the barbaric Germans in the “Dark Ages” that introduced a new breath of freedom to a Europe that had been strangled by deeply statist Roman laws, bureaucracies, and autocracy.

    “Does the US and the Western world use medieval style means of execution and punishment”

    – Considering that the US imprisons more of its subjects by a wide margin than do Muslim countries (often for trivial non-crimes, after saddling defendants with incompetent legal counsel and prosecuted by government lawyers who will do anything to put another notch in their belts) – and uses racial gangs and the threat of repeated anal rape as a means to keep this massive prison population under control – I don’t think the US in particular has much to brag about on this score.

    “anti-women”

    – Oddly, Islam guaranteed women the rights to own and inherit property, receive alimony and child support in the event of divorce, and even (among some schools of Sharia) divorce their husbands at a time when ‘enlightened’ Western/Christian theologians acknowledged none of these things and were debating whether or not women had souls. Also odd that at least three Muslim countries have brutalized women by selecting them as heads of state, something which the United States has failed to ever come close to doing, despite its apparent moral superiority on this issue.

    “Any Libertarian that buys into Political Correctness and wants to allow a totalitarianistic, anti-women religious system to have legal immunity or even legal precedence in this country and elsewhere is no Libertarian at all, but a Fifth Columnist.”

    Funny, I’ve always thought that real Libertarians would have no problem with people voluntarily entering into legal covenants with other consenting parties. You, apparently, believe that the state should determine what people are and are not allowed to agree to amongst themselves. I wonder, then, how you would stand on other similar agreements as among Orthodox Jewish, Mennonite, Fundamentalist LDS, white supremacist, and other such communities? Should the state step in to enforce Cody Quirk’s expectations of a libertarian society among these people?

  7. Cody Quirk

    “Tell us, Mr. Quirk, if ‘the’ Sharia bans women from driving, can you please explain why in 49 out of 50 Muslim-majority countries it is legal for women to drive?”

    Are there any Christian or western countries where women can’t drive? Plus there’s this-

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2013/10/27/7-ridiculous-restrictions-on-womens-rights-around-the-world/

    I notice a ton of countries highlighted on this list are Muslim countries, especially on the subject of Yemen’s law against women leaving their house without their husband’s permission.

    “Quite an ironic suggestion, considering that it was the legal principles introduced by the barbaric Germans in the “Dark Ages” that introduced a new breath of freedom to a Europe that had been strangled by deeply statist Roman laws, bureaucracies, and autocracy.”

    And yet many of those European countries. including Germany, not only had the Reformation and the Enlightenment eventually happen and helped them gradually become secular, but while Europe today is growing increasingly non-religious and technologically advanced, much of the Middle-east is heading in the complete opposite direction, with many aspects of the Islamic religion growing more intolerant and dogmatic in comparison to a century ago.

    “Considering that the US imprisons more of its subjects by a wide margin than do Muslim countries (often for trivial non-crimes, after saddling defendants with incompetent legal counsel and prosecuted by government lawyers who will do anything to put another notch in their belts)”

    Explain this then-

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hudud#History

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hudood_Ordinances

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zina#Human_rights_controversy

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tazir#Tazir_punishments

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judicial_system_of_Iran#Prison_system

    Compared to the United States and most of the west, the controversy over the flaws in our justice system and especially in the current rights and privileges of inmates here- we are quite better off and issues of corruption or inhumane treatment of the accused parties and prisoners here is small beans compared to what I have cited above.

    You just keep losing the argument.

    “and uses racial gangs and the threat of repeated anal rape as a means to keep this massive prison population under control – I don’t think the US in particular has much to brag about on this score.”

    Obviously you haven’t seen the movie ‘Midnight Express’ (based on a true story), nor are you aware of how worse the prison system is in other countries, including the middle east-

    https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2015/country-chapters/iran

    https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2015/country-chapters/saudi-arabia

    There’s this too-

    https://www.hrw.org/report/2014/08/18/locked-karaj/spotlight-political-prisoners-one-iranian-city

    https://www.hrw.org/news/2014/08/21/saudi-arabia-surge-executions

    https://www.hrw.org/news/2015/01/10/saudi-arabia-free-blogger-publicly-flogged

    “Oddly, Islam guaranteed women the rights to own and inherit property, receive alimony and child support in the event of divorce, and even (among some schools of Sharia) divorce their husbands at a time when ‘enlightened’ Western/Christian theologians acknowledged none of these things and were debating whether or not women had souls. Also odd that at least three Muslim countries have brutalized women by selecting them as heads of state, something which the United States has failed to ever come close to doing, despite its apparent moral superiority on this issue.”

    Oh, so basically since Islam in the middle east and Christianity (particularly the Catholic Church) in Europe were at complete opposites centuries ago, the PRESENT state of things should be ignored and we should give those dark aspects of the various laws, customs, and religious traditions in the middle east a free pass? Is that what you’re saying here? Really?

    The US has plenty of female governors, congresswomen, senators and cabinet members and would likely elect a female president next year if Trump & Hillary happen to win their primaries. Oh and Europe has an even higher percentage of women in elected office more so then any other continent in the world, all the while it’s the other way around in the middle east and in many of the majority-Muslim countries.
    So you have lost on this issue too.

    “Funny, I’ve always thought that real Libertarians would have no problem with people voluntarily entering into legal covenants with other consenting parties.”

    Not when such covenants would not only violate the U.S. constitution, including the Sixth, Seventh, even the Eighth, Ninth, and Thirteenth Amendments, but also deny a person their basic rights in such a contract, including when it’s either difficult or impossible for an individual to voluntarily leave or void such a contract, especially if there are cruel and excessive consequences involved for doing so.

    “You, apparently, believe that the state should determine what people are and are not allowed to agree to amongst themselves.”

    That’s one thing that the overwhelming majority of Libertarians approve of the state of doing on a proper and constitutional basis, especially when such “agreements” could include cruel/unusual punishments, involuntary slavery, and the extreme violation of one’s basic rights.

    “I wonder, then, how you would stand on other similar agreements as among Orthodox Jewish, Mennonite, Fundamentalist LDS, white supremacist, and other such communities? Should the state step in to enforce Cody Quirk’s expectations of a libertarian society among these people?”

    ANY religious group/organization that has, or even forces such contracts to commit the offenses and cruelties that I cited in my response before the last one is in the ethical/legal wrong and deserves the state to come after them, especially when it includes such groups like the FLDS sect that has knowingly violated many various laws, including the Age of Consent in several states and I’m glad the law has gone after them.

    Again, YOU ARE FULL OF SHIT.

    Keep it up troll.

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