Garrett Humbertson grew up in Western Maryland by two exemplary Christian parents. Their example taught him that if you work hard in America and follow God, you can be whatever you want. This instilled in Garrett a deep-seeded belief in the singularity of the United States, that the special Judeo-Christian heritage of America is what made it the most prosperous nation on earth. With a passion for writing and film, he obtained a Bachelors degree in Video Broadcasting at Liberty University, along with a Minor in Government Policy, and is now pursuing a Masters in Fine Arts in Script and Screenwriting at Regent University.
Julia Porterfield: Why are you Conservative?
Garrett Humbertson: Being Conservative simply means that I favor the preservation of America’s founding principles. The aim of the Founding Fathers in designing this Constitutional Republic was to ensure a government that was of, for, and by the people. Government is to serve certain limited functions, namely the preservation of individual natural rights, private property, and national security. Knowing that nations historically favor tyranny, the Founders were interested in separating judicial, legislative, and executive powers so that political power could not be consolidated in one body, thus devolving into a tyranny. The Founders studied the writings of Montesquieu, Locke, and other proponents of limited government, in order to form a government for the United States of America. Fostering an environment that favors personal liberty and limited government intervention has led the United States to progress the world more over the past 200 years, than the rest of the world had progressed in the previous 5,000 years of recorded history. Conservatism is proven to prosper the whole of society.
JP: Who is your favorite President?
GH: If you would have asked me a few weeks ago, I would said Ronald Reagan, and for good reasons. His economic policies of cutting taxes, deregulation, and reducing government spending drove inflation out of the economy and, more importantly, fostered an economic boom of historic proportions that amounted to about 20 million jobs created. However, recently I’ve been studying Calvin Coolidge, who oversaw the economic boom of the “Roaring Twenties,” and was a strong proponent of civil rights, limited government, and low taxation. He said: “There are only two main theories of government in our world. One rests on righteousness and the other on force. One appeals to reason, and the other appeals to the sword. One is exemplified in the republic, the other is represented by despotism. Peace, justice, humanity, charity—these cannot be legislated into being. They are the result of divine grace.” Coolidge recognized that Government cannot virtuous, and it cannot force people to be virtuous; virtue is voluntary. Today, perhaps Coolidge would say that Americans depend too much on Government, and not enough on God.
JP: Who is your least favorite President?
GH: Franklin Roosevelt helped create the entitlement mess we are in right now, and Jimmy Carter was an incompetent, but I’m afraid that our current President has earned that crown. President Obama is the most ideologically-driven President in American history, and he is an incompetent on top of it. He has shown a pattern of seeking to advance his own agenda over the preferences of the American people. ObamaCare was deeply unpopular when it was first passed, and it remains deeply unpopular. A majority of Americans are also opposed to Obama’s policies on gun control, taxation, government spending, and his handling of the national debt. Although the President was elected in the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, he has done nothing to foster economic growth. His bloated stimulus package put an emphasis on short-term construction jobs and failed energy companies, while wasting tens to hundreds of billions of dollars. 23 million Americans remain underemployed, but the President continues to propose tax increases and more government spending, which strangles growth and erodes liberty. President Obama has shown a tendency to favor the expansion of government control and regulation, while enabling the welfare state to increase to record levels.
JP: One of the most controversial acts of the Obama administration is ObamaCare. It was passed over three years ago. Should we just accept Obamacare or continue to fight against it?
GH: Fight. To not fight ObamaCare would be immoral. Even some Democrat lawmakers have noticed that its implementation alone has been a catastrophe. There are 21 taxes and fees within the law, and hospitals, insurance companies, and private businesses are being forced to comply with a host of new regulations. The very passage of ObamaCare was the opposite of the process the Founders intended. Nobody read the bill, and it was barely passed through the House, with several Democrats voting against it. The Supreme Court did give us some good news when they declared ObamaCare a tax, which means that a simple majority of both houses of Congress is needed to repeal it. Secondly, the Supreme Court recognized that States have the right to forego the law. Unfortunately, only a handful of governors have stood on principle and rejected the law. The next Republican President would have the support of the American people in seeking to repeal ObamaCare, and should do so to allow States the power to craft their own plans. States need to seek the input from the populace, and design plans that are consistent with the State’s unique environment.
JP: What social issue is most important to you?
GH: Abortion, without a doubt. Approximately one million little children are killed every year in American abortion clinics on false pretenses. Young women have been fed a lie that this issue has something to do with women’s rights or personal privacy, that what inside of them is nothing more than human tissue. The truth is that a pregnancy is a beautiful phenomenon. It is the miracle of one human life inside of another human life. This is a beauty that I as a man will never experience. The human life inside the mother has a unique human DNA from the moment of conception. It is a separate and self-contained human being in an early stage of development. The life will have a beating heart by the end of the first trimester. The psychological and physical turmoil that often plagues women who have had abortions needs to stop. I believe that every unborn child has a right to life, to realize his or her potential, to be given the same chance at life that I have been given. We must not devalue life as a society, and we also must support pregnancy centers that help women with the pregnancy process all the way to delivery. I believe that adoption is a far superior alternative to abortion.
JP: What is your stance on immigration reform?
GH: This has been a problem for the GOP, but it shouldn’t be. America is the child of all other nations, and there is no question that we welcome legal immigration as a country. We want people to come here, but the real question is what to we do with the masses who break our law as their first act upon entering the country? Should we grant illegal immigrants special treatment over those who pursued American citizenship the right way, by getting in line? Any self-respecting country has control of its border and immigration process. So yes, our immigration laws need to be reformed in order to streamline the process. However, those who are in the country illegally must get in line with everyone else. Marco Rubio has proposed an interesting plan that involves a pathway to citizenship, including paying a fine to atone for their crime. To me, that should be acceptable, but ultimately we must get our border under control, because that is a national security issue.
JP: The GOP has had a lot of young up and comers rise in popularity over the last year. Do you have any favorites?
GH: Senators Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and Rand Paul have been brilliant in standing up for liberty and conservative values. Their courage has generated some excitement among Conservatives, particularly young Conservatives and Libertarians. I would also keep an eye on Congressman Paul Ryan, who was made a household name after Mitt Romney selected him to be his running mate. Paul Ryan is arguably the smartest guy in Washington, and he has been sounding the alarm on the looming debt crisis, putting out several budgets that would cut government spending significantly and encourage economic growth.
JP: Any predictions for 2014 or 2016?
GH: 2014 is interesting, because there are several Senate races in which Democrats are up for reelection in states that were won by Romney or lean right. I think there is a tremendous chance for Republicans to re-claim the Senate in 2014. If that happens, Republicans could pass budgets through both houses of Congress—budgets that would encourage growth and cut spending, which President Obama would hopefully pass, but would probably veto. These vetoes would decrease his popularity, which is already well below 50 percent, and that would give the GOP huge momentum going into the 2016 races.
JP: How can Republican Party rebrand themselves and move beyond the “old white man” stigma they’ve been labeled with?
GH: The leadership in the Democrat party has perpetuated a lie over the last several decades that Republicans hate anyone who isn’t old and white and male. They win elections on issues that divide the electorate based on gender, race, and creed. So when Republicans say that taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for another person’s contraception, they are labeled sexists. When Republicans say we need to make sure our elections are fair, they are irrationally called racists. And when Republicans say we need to secure our border in the interest of national security, they are labeled Xenophobes. Democrat leaders have mastered the art of demagoguery in order to acquire more power. But isn’t it sexist to assume that female voters are so obsessed with their sex life, they want free contraception courtesy of their fellow taxpayer? Isn’t it racist to assume that black voters cannot acquire legal ID? Isn’t it irrational not to want to have a secure nation? The truth is that Conservatism is not about promoting any group over another. It’s about freedom. It’s about less government, more prosperity. It’s about everyone being the best they can be, reaching their full potential without the impediment of government interference. There are no easy answers to how we win this, but it would be a good start to get more conservative thinkers into the media and college classrooms. Liberals run the mainstream media and academia, and we have to reclaim those realms to have any hope of securing the blessings of liberty for our posterity.
JP: Why would you encourage others to be Conservative rather than liberal?
GH: Modern American Liberalism, or Statism as it is more accurately termed, seeks to control and shape the individual. Whether that be the plundering of his private property via high taxation, the overregulation of every little aspect of the private sector, restricting his right to self-defense, and so on. While the American founders broke from Tyranny in order to design a free and prosperous country on a foundation of a virtuous civil society, Statism is the undoing of limited government principles, seeking to grow Government and limit the potential and free will of the individual. Statism devalues the individual in favor of what is good for the “collective.” But who decides what is best for the collective, under the Statist model? Other men, who are hardly angels, as James Madison once pointed out. Here, I believe Ronald Reagan said it best: “Liberty is never more than a generation away from extinction,” and “Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem.”
JP: Who is your favorite writer/journalist?
GH: Without a doubt, it’s Mark Levin, who is a constitutional expert and former adviser to Reagan. His bestselling book Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto, which has sold well over a million copies, is a must-read for any young conservative, or any conservative for that matter. I think I like his latest book (Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America) better, because it examines past political philosophers and applies their work to today’s political atmosphere, giving us some context for this fight. It has been highly influential on my thinking, and it defines the timeless struggle between Freedom and the Utopian-Statist ideals which are inconsistent with the history and nature of man. Utopian-Statism pursue a fantastical man-made paradise of sorts, advancing a sort of “false religion,” as Levin defines it.