Last week, Libertarian Party presidential candidate John McAfee took a gigantic step in defending Apple’s decision to refuse to hack into the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone. Speaking with Business Insider, John McAfee claimed that the government is violating the 13th Amendment if it forces Apple to create a backdoor for the phone.
McAfee’s legal team claims that the term of involuntary servitude, banned under the 13th Amendment, is “used in reference to any type of slavery, peonage, or compulsory labor. Two essential elements of involuntary servitude are involuntariness, which is compulsion to act against one’s will, and servitude, which is some form of labor for another.”
The presidential candidate told Business Insider:
“The Government is demanding that Apple and its employees perform substantial work in order to create software that does not exist. Apple and its employees do not willingly want to do the work. Thus, the government is demanding involuntary servitude of Apple and its employees in regard to doing this specific work. The 13th Amendment clearly states:
“Neither slavery, nor Involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
McAfee has vigorously defended Apple; he even offered to decrypt the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone through ‘social engineering’ in an op-ed in Business Insider last month. With Apple battling the government nationwide (recently gaining a temporary victory in New York earlier this week), the debate over privacy versus security has taken the country by storm.
The FBI didn’t directly respond to Business Insider’s inquiry for questions, instead referencing a letter from FBI director James Comey released on February 21st.
McAfee will appear in the Fox Business Libertarian Party Presidential Debate scheduled for later this month with Gary Johnson and Austin Petersen.