At a time when many candidates for the Virginia General Assembly are clamoring for tighter restrictions on guns in schools, Garry C. Myers advocates the opposite. He has said schoolchildren would be better off if they were armed.
What's more, Myers wants to legalize all drugs. He wants to get rid of public schools and redirect those tax dollars to the school of a parent's choice. And he wants to eliminate the state sales tax, which he calls "immoral."
Myers is a Libertarian candidate running for state Senate in District 33, which includes Loudoun County and part of Fairfax County. He is running against a candidate with more conventional views on such issues--incumbent Republican William C. "Bill" Mims.
Myers said he decided to run mostly to spread the Libertarian Party message, and he has not been doing a lot of campaigning. "I'm mainly interested in getting Libertarian issues into the public mind and making them known," Myers said.
Mims said he is running on his record, citing his work in the last legislative session to get state lottery funds sent to local governments to pay for schools. He said if he is reelected, he will press for more state funding for school construction.
Mims said he is proud of playing a significant role in legislation that allows parents to prepay college tuition in Virginia and to put money in a tax-free education savings plan.
The Republican also cited his work to revise state law on juvenile justice issues, which he said he wants to examine further. He said that, among other things, the legislation helped increase the number of offenses for which juveniles can be tried as adults.
On traffic issues, Mims said he would fight for funding for a railway in the Dulles corridor and for money to expand Route 7 to six lanes westward from Tysons Corner. He said he would press for the growth control measures requested by Loudoun supervisors and by other constituencies.
Mims said he disagrees with much of his opponent's agenda. "I am almost speechless at the thought of legalizing crack cocaine," Mims said. "I think that the legalization of crack cocaine would open Pandora's box regarding widespread death, violence and the destruction of whoever is using it."
Myers said legalizing drugs would save lives by eliminating the violence associated with the illegal drug trade.
He also said that if students were allowed to carry guns into schools, they would be safer. He said any kind of gun control is "wrong" and a violation of the Second Amendment of the Constitution. He said that if students at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., had been armed during the shooting spree there earlier this year, lives could have been saved.
"If teachers and students in Littleton had been armed, there would have been far less carnage there," Myers said. "It might not have happened at all."
CAPTION: Virginia Senate Districts for Loudoun, Fauquier (This graphic was not available)