When thinking about the dominant political culture in the United States, one cannot leave out the fact that many celebrities who dominate mainstream media are liberal, and openly tout their liberal ideologies.
Is this part of the problem? It’s possible that many people only get their information and opinions from the celebrities that they like.
I decided it was time to highlight some more pro-liberty, perhaps libertarian-ish celebrities to show that not everyone in Hollywood is a liberal, and give us some hope for the future. I set out to make a list of “libertarians” but unfortunately that list would be too small, and quite frankly, non-inclusive.
So, here is my list of pro-liberty celebrities:
1. Trey Parker and Matt Stone
“Tolerant, but not stupid! Look, just because you have to tolerate something doesn’t mean you have to approve of it! … “Tolerate” means you’re just putting up with it! You tolerate a crying child sitting next to you on the airplane or, or you tolerate a bad cold. It can still piss you off!” — Mr. Garrison
As many of you probably know, Trey Parker and Matt Stone are the creators of South Park. They are known for their “libertarian” leanings and both have alluded to their hatred for both sides of the political spectrum.
When asked if they were liberal or conservative they said this,
Trey: “We avoid extremes but we hate liberals more than conservatives, and we hate them.”
Matt: “I hate conservatives, but I really… hate liberals.”
And, when asked about being a libertarian in a recent Reason interview with Nick Gillespie and Jesse Walker, they each responded like this:
Trey: “I still don’t really know the answer to that question. I think I am, though.”
Matt: “I think it is an apt description for me personally, and that has probably seeped into the show. But we never set out to do a libertarian show.”
Although the show isn’t exactly “libertarian”, it should still be celebrated for at least going against the mainstream liberal and conservative dribble.
2. John Stossel
‘Need’ now means wanting someone else’s money. ‘Greed’ means wanting to keep your own. ‘Compassion’ is when a politician arranges the transfer.’” – John Stossel
Dare I brand John Stossel as the most well-known libertarian celebrity? He is a consumer reporter, investigative journalist, television show host, author and columnist- all while trasmitting libertarian and freedom-promoting ideas.
Stossel has an interesting story; he used to be a flaming liberal, but after years of reporting and journalism, he realized the error of his ways. Now he considers himself a full-blown libertarian and free-market advocate.
3. Vince Vaughn
Have you ever seen Swingers? Or Wedding Crashers? Not so much libertarian, but Vaughn himself was an avid Ron Paul supporter during the 2008 and 2012 election cycles. In fact, he called himself a “Ron Paul Conservative”; so pretty much, he’s a libertarian.
4. Rob Lowe
This one’s a bit of a stretch, but I really want it to be true, because I literally love Chris Traeger. Many people think that Rob Lowe switched views somewhat from being Democrat to more conservative, but he has no official party affiliation. He seems more “centrist” to me. There are some clues that he may be drifting right…
Although not the best defender of freedom, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s campaign drew Lowe’s attention and Lowe jumped on board.
Lowe once said, “… the individual needs to be more responsible for their own lives” instead of always thinking about “what the government can do for us.” Sounds pretty classically liberal to me. And he ardently defended Ayn Rand against the backlash when Paul Ryan’s admiration for her came out.
Maybe he doesn’t come right out and say it, but at least he isn’t wholeheartedly a Hollywood liberal.
5. Bruce Willis
Again, Bruce Willis never comes out and says, “I’m a libertarian”, but I added him to the list for this- and perhaps only this- quote:
In an interview about his new movie, the reporter started to ask him if he was a Republican. Willis interrupted him and said,
“I’m gonna stop you right there, and everybody write this down, because I’m sick of answering this [stupid] question. Let me answer that part of it. I’m a Republican only as far as I want a smaller government, I want less government intrusion. I want them to stop pissing on my money and your money and tax dollars that we give 50 percent of or 40 percent of every year. I want them to be fiscally responsible and I want these [silly] lobbyists out of Washington. Do that and I’ll say I’m a Republican… There’s tons, billions and billions of dollars being wasted. I hate the government, okay? I’m a-political. Write that down. I’m not a Republican.”
He hates the government? It doesn’t mean he’s a libertarian, per-se, but it means he wants a smaller government, and hey- don’t we all?
Lisa Kennedy Montgomery was an MTV VJ in the 90’s who helped popularize bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam. She was always known as the “MTV Republican”, but now she considers herself a libertarian. She currently hosts a talk radio show and is a contributor for Reason. She believes inhuman liberty, personal freedom, third party politics, and ideological consistency.
Wonderful. This is a good start. And I think as time goes on, more and more mainstream icons will be of the pro-liberty type.
[Originally published on Students For Liberty]