Meet Vice Presidential Candidate Judge Jim Gray

Earlier this evening I was able to meet and talk with libertarian vice presidential candidate Judge Jim Gray. The majority of his speech was focused on abolishing drug prohibition as I had figured it would be. He did touch on other subjects like the Department of Education, Department of Energy and Department of Commerce. I don’t feel the need to write about his stances on the departments because with these three departments libertarians seem to decide unanimously that they all should be shut down or at the least reformed tremendously.

The location where he spoke was a small art gallery in downtown Phoenix where one can find numerous small shops, galleries, restaurants and bars. Basically it’s a hipster and hippie alike, hangout part of town. I know this well considering I frequent a few bars in the area. A hippy chick artist was in the front of the gallery painting away with her dreadlocks pulled back. When I entered to see her and the small gallery I first thought that maybe I was in the wrong place. She confirmed with me that I wasn’t and that Jim Gray would be speaking in the back patio. I weaved my way through the gallery to find the back patio where the audio was being set up by other hippies. Needless to say this was the stereotypical location for someone to speak out against prohibition of drugs. I imagined if any neo-cons were to find out about this speech they surely smirk self righteously.

I however am open to giving anybody a fair chance to speak out regardless of any prophecies I might have. I sat down in the front row of fold up chairs. The stage was small with an old rickety wooden table on it holding pamphlets and signs. Behind me I eavesdropped as I often do, I was listening to a conversation between the Gary Johnson campaign bus driver and a middle aged woman who was sitting with her two younger “business partners.” I parenthesized business partners due to the nature of their business. Apparently it is a special drink made with marijuana. Listening to the middle aged woman and the Johnson campaigner speak was dissatisfying to say the least. The campaigner was stating that he was driving around to a series of events school credit and hated politics. He was trying to describe Johnson and his policies to the middle aged woman who knew absolutely nothing about him. He was surprisingly lacking a lot of knowledge about his own candidate that he is supposed to be campaigning for. This bothered me deeply.

After much too long of a wait Judge Jim Gray took to the microphone avoiding the stage entirely. I had to pull me feet in so he wouldn’t trip over me due to my closeness to the stage. Jim Gray is a good man no doubt about it. He feels strongly about his stances on ending the “war on drugs.” He gave all the usual talking points, over-crowded prisons, it’s not the effects of the drugs but the effects of the drug money, regulating it like alcohol etc. He brought up (much to my satisfaction) the effect legalizing drugs would have on the drug cartel’s demise and lowering the number of killings in Mexico. I was glad that I didn’t have to bring that up during the questions and answers segment. However I did find myself having to address something he didn’t cover. I asked him if he could agree with me, as a judge, that possibly the best way to begin legalizing drugs in the U.S. would first be by abolishing mandatory minimum sentencing. He seemed happy that I brought this up considering he was a justice of the superior court in Orange County, California, a state with many unfair mandatory minimum sentencing laws. I told him this would be a more gradual way as a first step to the legalization or rather at least the decriminalization of drug usage.

I asked him another question which pointed to something he had talked about earlier. While someone exhaled a puff of marijuana smoke off stage, he was addressing the fact that the police department doesn’t have enough funding to focus more on violent true crimes because of being tied up with drug law enforcement. I asked him if he thought a private police force would solve this. A free market with privatized police would mean that people can subscribe to a private run police force that would be more focused on doing good police work as opposed to carrying out ridiculous federal laws that also consume a lot of their funds. In a free market good work and competition between other companies would solve these problems. No one would hire a private police force that focuses so much on drug laws and spends most of their money on enforcing them. People would hire a private force that actually works to protect them from violent crimes and burglaries. I wish Jim Gray would have chimed in but he didn’t. I brought it up again when someone else asked if he advocates cutting funding and control of prisons from the federal government.

In the end I can’t complain much about Judge Jim Gray. He seems libertarian at least. I’ve been a member of the libertarian party for roughly nine years now. Before I was a libertarian I was an independent. I have seen a lot of growth in the party due to the efforts of Ron Paul. While I see more republicans switching over to more libertarian ideology, I’m still a bit on the defense, which I shouldn’t be. When I go to meetings with the Ron Paul supporters I find we mostly agree with one another while still seeing their conservative roots pop out from time to time. This gives me faith that perhaps the libertarian party will actually be successful as a third party in future elections and within local government. Because left to our own devices up until now with the new Ron Paul members, we couldn’t possibly succeed. We hate politics too much it seems and we mostly do it for school credit.

Yes that’s right we have moved over to our own self hosted site. The URL is

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1 Comment

  1. Shame, shame , shame! What a sad state of affairs, when the Founders’ philosophy is left out of our debates and polls. A declaration is an affirmation. Independence means self-government. They could have called The Declaration of Independence, The Affirmation of
    Self-Government! Aha! The Founders were libertarian.

    I declare, as did the Founders, the libertarian philosophy is what defines a true patriot. True patriots are libertarian. You might be. Take this 10 question quiz.


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