Justin Jones will no longer be a candidate for the Arkansas House of Representatives after saying "fags are disgusting" and "HIV is created by homosexuality." Jones was running as a Libertarian and on Tuesday his local Libertarian Party pulled their support.
"The Benton County Libertarian Party urges Mr. Jones to immediately abandon his campaign for office, and to refrain from returning to the public arena until such time as he has gained enough knowledge, wisdom, and maturity to do so responsibly," chairman Michael J. Kalagias said, as NWAHomepage.com reported.
Jones took to Facebook to announce his withdrawal from the campaign.
"Effective Immediately I will be suspending my campaign for State Representative of District 87," Jones posted to Facebook late Tuesday afternoon.
Jones had made his original homophobic remarks in response to a Facebook friend's post lamenting gay people aren't allowed to donate blood.
"The likelihood of a fag catching HIV is 1000% more likely then [sic] any straight person,” Jones had said. "If you don't think HIV is created by homosexuality then you need education. That's the entirety of my post, for someone who wants free speech, you don't act like it. I shouldn't have said 'fags' should have said homosexuals. But I won't apologize of the moral of my comment, homosexuality is wrong, and shouldn't be publicly endorsed.”
He later issued a statement saying his comments had been "satire" but he stood by them because they are "factual." (They are not factual.)
"I recently made a comment that was meant to be satire, but had FACTUAL meaning. In the new day of Social Media, we face backlash for every comment we make, which is putting 'Free Speech' at a price. The Aids Epidemic is a VERY big part of the LGBTQ Community. To not recognize that would be a 'Lie' to yourself and the LGBTQ Community. In this New Day of politics, we are recognizing the benefits of throwing away the old establishment, and how that didn't work. Today, we are bringing back 'FREEDOM OF SPEECH,' and protecting our 2nd amendment rights. That might be too much for some people, but that's why we're getting them out of Public Office. Let's get back to 'Making Arkansas Great Again.' Vote Justin Jones for State Representative, District 87."
His campaign website has been taken down and his social media accounts are closed or private, but the bio on his Twitter account now reads: "God understands our prayers even when we can't find the words to say them."