Campaigning on what he calls a ‘Freedom Agenda,’ John Monds is deadly serious about becoming the next president of the United States.
BY THE FLORIDA COURIER STAFF
TALBOT COUNTY, GEORGIA – A stay-at-home dad living in a rural Georgia County made
a recent presidential campaign announcement. The event took place in Talbot County, located in the west central Georgia. The 2010 Census population there: 6,865.
You probably missed it. But other people are paying attention.
John Monds says he made history in the 2008 Georgia Public Service Commissioner race when he became the first Libertarian Party candidate to receive more than 1 million votes. He says he made history again in 2010 when he became the first African-American candidate to appear on the ballot for governor in the state of Georgia.
In his various campaigns, Monds has earned more than 1.8 million votes as a Libertarian candidate in Georgia.
Monds lives in Cairo, Ga., about 140 miles south of Talbot County. He earned a degree in business administration from Morehouse College with a concentration in banking and finance before getting what he calls “his dream job” – homeschooling his children for the past 20 years.
He has been married to Dr. Kathaleena Monds for 21 years. They have four children: Akintunde, Cazembe, Halima, and Malik. Two of his children have already earned their college degrees.
Monds has been active in his community through various organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., and the NAACP. He enjoys classic Volkswagens, gardening, and genealogy.
He worked for more than 20 years with his sister to try to find his family’s roots. They discovered that their great-great-grandparents on their father’s side of the family, Columbus and Morning Ferguson, were enslaved and worked on the Ferguson family farm in Talbot County.
It was in Talbot that he made his presidential announcement.
“I am running (for president) to honor them and all the other freedom fighters,” he explained in an exclusive interview with the Florida Courier.
He has been an active member of the Libertarian Party for 15 years, and has run for four races as a Libertarian candidate. He joined the party after reading the platforms of all the political parties in Georgia, and got excited about it because in his opinion, the Libertarian Party is “serious about freedom.”
“The most important thing I have in my favor is what I believe in,” Monds says. “I espouse a Freedom Agenda; getting government out of peoples’ lives.”
Regarding his presidential qualifications, Monds replies, “A president will have many people around him – cabinet members, lawyers, etc. You have to have good judgment. My six decades on this earth indicate that I’m pretty good at making decisions.”
‘Not your friend’
“One thing that I espouse to Black audiences is that the government is not your friend,” he intoned. “Go back 400 years in this country alone. Almost every problem the African American community has suffered has been at the hands of government. I don’t believe you should go to the perpetrator of your problem for the solution.
“Whether you were looking at slavery, Jim Crow, poor schooling, segregated housing, discrimination on all levels, those problems, and the problems that Black farmers had with the theft of Black land and Black wealth, all those things are tied to the government.”
No right to decide
Monds maintains that his message is about “empowering individuals to be able to guide and control their own lives.
“And I don’t think I have a right to decide what should be done for you, or to you, even if I win an election. In fact, I think government makes things worse just as often as they make things better.”
How does he do it?
How was he able to get more than 1 million votes in Georgia, given a lack of money and name recognition?
“I always try to have a very professional campaign. I articulate the things that I believe in, and hope that they resonate with the voters,” he asserted.
“I’ve always been willing to go wherever I can. I’ve done televised debates, major TV interviews, radio, door-to-door, building websites, social media, putting a team together. You put all those things together in the circumstances of a particular race, and you get a good outcome.”
Would a vote for John Monds be wasted?
“It depends on what you believe,” he explained. “If you believe in freedom, you’re not going to get that from the Democratic Party; you’re not going to get that from the Republican Party. If you believe in freedom, voting for either of those parties would be a wasted vote.”
Monds will be in Orlando this weekend for the Libertarian Party of Florida state convention. He and other presidential candidates will meet party delegates to share their respective platforms and campaign strategies.
The party’s national convention will be held in May in Austin, Texas. Until then, Monds will be traveling from one state convention to another vying for support. How is he financing his campaign?
“Bootstraps,” he laughed.