In the lead up to the 2016 US Presidential Election I decided to formally endorse Donald Trump. This was seen as controversial since I identify as a libertarian. I had been told that all good libertarians must get behind Gary Johnson’s Libertarian Party presidential campaign for the greater good of the movement. More extreme libertarians couldn’t believe that I was supporting a proto-fascist candidate for president and that I was betraying all the principles we had worked so hard promote after Ron Paul’s presidential runs in 2008 and 2012.
In the ISideWith website quiz it still came up with Gary Johnson as the candidate who I had the most in common with. However this Presidential Election was not about all the issues as a whole, there were certain issues that were far more important than others. For me the two most important ones were stopping illegal and Muslim immigration to the United States and ending political correctness. These two issues were the biggest threat to freedom and liberty in 2016. In my view Trump’s position on other policy issues such as the debt, entitlement reform and police powers were not as important in this elections and can still be achieved in future election cycles.
In 2016 we saw Islamic terrorist attacks not just in the United States but all throughout the Western world. In Europe we were seeing attacks at one point almost every week with the Nice Bastille Day attack being the most prominent. The European migrant crises which shows no sign of slowing since it began in 2015, which has led to millions of mainly Muslim migrants traveling by sea from various Middle Eastern countries has greatly contributed to this increase in terror attacks. Of course Europe had already had decades of mass migration with many previous attacks being committed by second or third generation Muslim migrants.
Back in the United States we saw the Orlando gay nightclub terrorist attack in June killing 49 innocent people. There was also the bombings in New York City and New Jersey which thankfully did not kill anyone but left 31 injured. Seeing all these attacks unfold it started to hit a lot of people that the death tolls were not just numbers, they were real people, who had families, friends and much of their life left to live.
The apologists for open borders continued to trot out the line that your risk of dying in a terrorist attack was marginally slim. This dismissal of these deaths as just a fact of life was extremely callous and did not address the fact that we are not used to these things happening in Western countries. One of the most important freedoms is the right to life and not be blown up. This is not to mention the reduction of freedoms that occur with the Islamisation of societies with greater levels of sexual assaults on women, harassment of LGBT people and violent crime in general.
The fact that both Hillary Clinton and Gary Johnson thought there was no problem with mass Muslim immigration shows that they did not recognize what was the greatest threat to liberty in United States. Trump made his central campaign promise to build a wall on the United States southern border to stop mass third world illegal immigration as well as stopping immigration from predominantly Muslim countries that have a history of supporting terrorism. For me and vast number of Americans Trump’s policy helps ensure that the freedoms and liberties we enjoy now will not be threatened by a hostile foreign ideology.
Political correctness was the other big threat to freedom and liberty. While terrorism threatens the physical self, political correctness threatens the mind. It aimed at controlling what we can think, say or act under the threat of having our livelihoods destroyed and being publicly shamed. This was mainly due to the rise of social justice warriors and their friends in the media and popular culture. They claimed that we lived in a society that had institutionalised and covert racism, sexism, homophobia and every other type of bigotry you could think of. They accused mainly white men of practicing such bigotry every day, that their behaviour needed to be remade even if they showed no actual signs of discriminating against any other group. They divided up America into oppressors and victims and drove a wedge between different identity groups as they are called which resulted in massive social unrest.
Examples of this were claims that if there were not enough black people employed at or going to universities it must be racist and we needed affirmative action. The rise of Black Lives Matter who rioted every time a black person was shot by policy claiming that it must be racism, but didn’t care if the police shot a white person. To make it worse, they were indifferent to the fact that black against white crime was much higher than its white against black counterpart. It was shoving down people’s throats of trans everything, that there were now 31+ different genders and you had to call people who identified as whatever by their proper pronoun which was a word invented five minutes ago. Even if we used the term coloured people instead of people of colour, commented on how attractive we found particular women or left of a letter off LGBTQ+ we were accused of being sexists and bigots.
Just to be clear Donald Trump didn’t have ending political correctness as an offical policy, but his election sends a strong signal to society that ordinary people were not going to put up with this policing of their thoughts and speech. Throughout his Presidential campaign he refused to apologise, for example insulting journalist Megyn Kelly or Ted Cruz’s wife. He refused to back down on any of his rhetoric such as saying he felt like punching a disruptive protestor in the face or the nicknames he gave to his opponents.
Most other candidates would have given grovelling apologies, but not Trump and people admired his courage in taking a stand. The only thing he did apologise for was the Access Hollywood tape but the American people by electing him showed they just didn’t care about some straight playboy talk. His election will have the effect of totally disempowering the politically correct class and social justice warriors. Trump as President will not introduce any laws restricting free speech and protect freedom of association. Hillary Clinton and Gary Johnson were happy to call people racists or bigots (remember the basket of deplorables?).
I should stress there are issues which Trump is not good on issues such as free trade and cannot be described as fiscally conservative. But he is very good on many other issues important to libertarians such as school choice, repealing and replacing Obamacare, ending government interference in the energy market, protecting the right bear arms and he is somewhat reasonable on foreign policy.
He is by no means a libertarian but it should be stressed neither were most of the other Republican candidates, or Hillary Clinton. Gary Johnson was certainly a weak libertarian to put it politely. But we cannot expect all the issues we hold dear to be addressed in one election cycle. We will still fight for our other issues in the future, at the federal, state and local levels. Trump was the best candidate to fight the important issues this cycle, his election should be seen as good thing. Of course the fight for freedom and liberty will continue and no of us consider our battles to be over because of Trump’s victory. I am still a libertarian and will never stop trying to create a freer society.