Robert “Star” Locke is proud to be an American, but some of his most memorable experiences have come to him while he was traveling around the world. His travels have taken him across Europe and Asia, and he credits the lessons he learned there with shaping his approach to American citizenship and patriotism.
The first of these key experiences occurred when he was just six years old. His father was stationed in the army in Japan during the Second World War, and Locke and his siblings lived there briefly, too. He claims to be one of the few people alive today who saw the Hiroshima and Nagasaki wreckage sites firsthand. “We had no qualms about putting weapons on their ass,” he said. “It would have taken thousands of more dead Americans to invade Japan, but we put ourselves first.”
Such is one of the ways that patriotism was instilled in Locke from a young age. His American pride has spoken to him so much that he has decided to run for president of the United states. He has no experience in any elected office, but he has previously challenged Greg Abbott back in 2006 for the Republican nomination for Governor of Texas.
Locke lives in Harlingen, Texas, right across the border from Mexico. It’s a small community, over 75% of which is made up of Mexican-Americans. Living close to the border has made immigration a salient institution in Locke’s life; it’s one of the issues he is most passionate about as a candidate. In short, he’s against it: “We don’t need any more people in this country,” he said. Locke appears to be especially opposed to immigration from Mexico, in spite of having lived in that country and visited many times.
When asked what he’d do as President to put a stop to Mexican immigration, he simply said he would go into Mexico himself to deal with the issues there; he’s proposed taking control of the five Mexican states closest to the U.S. border and turning them into protectorates. He claims to have already talked to the Mexican army about his plan, noting that no one from America has tried to communicate with them since the Battle of the Alamo.
Aside from immigration, Locke other policies include eliminating abortions, creating an incentive and productivity act which will allow for veterans to gain additional funding from jobs with tax payers money, and creating a deposit and recycle act “promoting & relating to the recycle and the return, and deposit upon and disposal of manufactured or created items sold in the United States.”
Locke has many criticisms of the current political system, but one of his biggest frustrations is the influence on it by elitism, wealth, and privilege; all things that Locke couldn’t identify with less. “When working men can’t be heard, you end up with elite, rich, white spoiled brats…very dangerous people…they’ve had everything they’ve needed all their lives, so you can’t expect anything else.” Danger was a theme Locke sought to express when describing elites in power; he truly believes they are a threat to the country and its political future. The foremost example he mentioned of dangerous political elites was Donald Trump, with whom he disagrees on almost everything, especially issues related to immigration.
Locke’s disenchantment with material wealth comes from his religious roots. He remembers watching a newsreel of Mother Teresa while she was working in India. The cameras cut to a man who was offering her a check (for tax writeoff purposes, he assumes). She refused to accept it, and the man questioned why and whether she even had a disposable income to be denying money.
“No,” she said, “and thank God.”
The message of simplicity has stayed with Locke. “It hit me like a bullet to the heart. She didn’t have anything that she didn’t want.”
In the mold of such religious figures, Locke is involved in his community.
And now, he is currently working on a project, called “Save The Dream” a non-profit will acquire land from the Texas government to build a housing community for homeless veterans. The project also will also provide chow halls and jobs in the construction industry for those willing to find employment. “This is what I have been dedicating most of my energy to the last  years,” said Locke. “I want for more people to hear about it.”
Edward “Eddie” Villafranca, one of Locke’s co-members at the American Legion, remembers driving out to Buena Vista, Texas, where the land is located, for the first time with Locke.
“He was so excited to see it,” recalls Villafranca. “Knowing he was close to getting that land made him really happy, because he loves helping veterans and other people.”