The Libertarian Philosophy of the NFL’s Latest Gay-Friendly Celebrity

I’m not a huge football fan, but I follow the sport enough to know that punters, by and large, are not prone to becoming celebrity athletes.

Minnesota Vikings Punter Chris Kluwe broke that trend in September with two words: “lustful cockmonster.” Actually, there were a few more words than that, but those were the two that proved the most memorable (because they are awesome). Kluwe, incensed at a letter by Maryland Delegate Emmett C. Burns Jr. trying to browbeat the Baltimore Ravens into silencing gay-friendly activism from one of its players, wrote a memorable letter of his own. Published in full on Deadspin, it contained wonderful phrases like “narcissistic fromunda stain” and “holy fucking shitballs.”

One passage proved to be a real winner: “I can assure you that gay people getting married will have zero effect on your life. They won't come into your house and steal your children. They won't magically turn you into a lustful cockmonster.” The last two words went viral, fast (just start typing “lustful” into Google and look at the autocomplete options). He’s now selling T-shirts with the words and using the money to support the gay marriage recognition efforts in Minnesota (Minnesota is one of four states with a gay-marriage-related vote next Tuesday).

This week OC Weekly profiled Kluwe (he’s a native of Seal Beach) and took a look at the changing attitude of professional sports and athletes toward gays.

Of note is Kluwe’s attitude toward politics. Though he’s a very vocal advocate of gay marriage, he doesn’t see himself as a liberal or progressive:

Though Kluwe is now the spokesman for a liberal cause, he doesn't consider himself a Democrat. He favors neither Barack Obama nor Mitt Romney, and he describes the presidential race as a contest to kiss the ass of the most billionaire donors, rather than the battle of ideas it purports to be. If Kluwe had to label himself, he'd say libertarian, but that doesn't quite sum it up either.

"My ideal world is one in which we don't need a government because people treat one another the way they want to be treated," Kluwe says. "But until we fix human nature, that's probably not going to happen."

On Kluwe’s blog at the Pioneer Press, he uses a libertarian argument in an attempt to counter opponents of same-sex marriage recognition:

One argument I see a lot from the Vote Yes perspective is that “government shouldn’t tell us how to define marriage.” I totally agree with you! Government should not be able to tell religions how to define marriage, but that goes both ways. If you vote Yes on the Minnesota Marriage Amendment, you’re using the government to enshrine one definition of marriage for everyone, no matter their beliefs. That’s the complete opposite of less government in your life. I’m sure you wouldn’t want to pass a constitutional amendment forever defining religion as “solely between a (insert faith here) and God,” especially if (insert faith here) isn’t the faith you believe in.

As for Kluwe’s “until we fix human nature” idealism, I would point out that a government prone to kissing the asses of donors is not likely to provide the assistance he’s looking for. Cultural changes (like the support of gay marriage) happen first on a social level. Government always lags behind. Government is not capable of fixing these flaws of human nature – assuming some sort of measurable definition of flaws to begin with – so his idealism shouldn’t keep him from embracing the libertarian philosophy more fully.

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  • Almanian 1||

    He's a fucking VIKING? Then FUCK HIM! Purple Pecker-eatin' Cocksmokers!

    /true "TEAM" Lions fan response

  • fish||

    Not to worry Almanian 1 the Viking always choke on something.....cock or playoffs....all the same to them!

  • AlmightyJB||

    Lions blew their load last year.

  • 1955||

    Well as a Viking fan I can take solace that I am not a Detroit, Cleveland, or Buffalo fan.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    word

  • C. Anacreon||

    What's between his eyes? Is he wearing something or is that his real face?

  • ||

    He's of Klingon ancestry, maternal side of the family.

  • $park¥||

    I was going to say Romulan, but it could be either.

  • Spoonman.||

    That's clearly a Bajoran nose ridge.

  • ||

    Why should he embrace libertarianism (and therefore minarchism) more fully, Scott? Fuck that, he's an individualist anarchist and says so quite plainly ("My ideal world is one in which we don't need a government because people treat one another the way they want to be treated"). He shouldn't be stupid and become a minarchist, he should stay exactly as he is.

  • Paul.||

    Why should he embrace libertarianism (and therefore minarchism) more fully, Scott?

    Because if he's not with us he's against us?

  • Citizen Nothing||

    He shouldn't be stupid and become a minarchist


    Sounds like something a lustful cockmonster would say.

  • $park¥||

    Once again I'm force to agree with the hipster. If this keeps happening I'm afraid I'm going to find myself wearing knit caps and skinny jeans.

  • nicole||

    knit caps and skinny jeans

    I hear it's short pants, ringlets and a giant lollipop. Are you really ready for that?

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    No one is ever ready for that.

  • $park¥||

    Look, I'm not looking to take his place as mascot and that's clearly the mascot uniform. I'll be one of the guys on the sideline with a knit cap, skinny jeans, and a letter painted on my chest.

  • nicole||

    Dude, hipsters in skinny jeans are way too cool to paint letters on their chests. We will have ironic tshirts supporting "NOT A TEAM."

  • $park¥||

    I guess I shouldn't have expected a girl to understand. I will paint the letter on my chest ironically. Duh.

  • ||

    How do I mansplain this to you, nicole: women can't be hipsters, because, well, duh, they're chicks, and that's all they are capable of being.

    (gesticulates wildly, grabs crotch)

  • mnarayan||

    Scott is pretty clearly referencing the next sentence in the quote, not the part you use. I say its pretty clear, because he, you know, quotes it.

  • Scott S.||

    I'm not suggesting that he choose between anarchist and minarchist. I'm suggesting he realize that the issues of human nature don't preclude him wanting little to no government.

  • JW||

    He shouldn't be stupid and become a minarchist

    If ProL could understand what this means, he might be offended.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I might be, but I have no idea what you're talking about.

  • MJGreen||

    So libertarians can't be anarchists now?

  • ||

    Libertarian = minarchist, in my opinion. Feel free to disagree.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I think that's true enough. We're just fellow travelers while we fight the total statists. After we win, we'll turn on each other. I mean more than we already have.

  • Brett L||

    1. Win the revolution
    2. Purges

    I know, its a hard to-do list, but lets get to it.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    That's a good way of looking at it. Surely we can stay unified for as long as it takes to vanquish the statis--LOOK OUT EPI'S GOT A CUTLASS!!!!

  • Pro Libertate||

    See, the one advantage we minarchists have is that there are more of us and we're willing to combine to use force on others when absolutely necessary. Our two advantages. Let me come in again.

  • fish||

    ....he should stay exactly as he is.

    Stay a punter...that's just hateful!

  • cryptarchy||

    The state is a gang of thieves writ large

    - Murray Rothbard

  • fish||

    Uhh..okay.

  • Another David||

    And yet they're still better than the Cowboys.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    PWND!

  • Certified Public Asskicker||

    If I was going to be an NFL player, I'd want to be the punter. I can play to 40 and not die when I am 50.

  • Drake||

    So an NFL player is threatening to beat up people who don't like gays. Won't that make people... afraid of gays? There is probably a term for that condition.

  • fish||

    So an NFL player is threatening to beat up people who don't like gays....

    Again...a punter....! I wouldn't be too concerned.

  • Killazontherun||

    I never liked the word 'homophobic' because it has Freudian connotations and I fucking hate Freud. The mind is nothing like his model.

    'Bigot' will suffice.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    I still like "Gaycist"

  • Killazontherun||

    That's the first I have seen that word. I think it might work.

  • Tonio||

    I'm not seeing the threat of violence. Can you help me find it?

  • Drake||

    "Kicking Homophobic Ass"

    Right on the cover. Try squinting.

  • Calidissident||

    Uh, I highly doubt Chris Kluwe wrote the line on the front of a magazine.

  • Killazontherun||

    This guy is going to be fun and entertaining for us libertarians* for many years to come.

    *big tent word usage almost always used by me as I don't have the time nor inclination to be bogged into pedant arguments - Ancap in my political sphere, IndAn in my personal, hence not a good fit for certain established camps.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    What's this WE stuf...

    *reads asterisked stuff*

    oh, never mind...

  • Scarcity||

    If you won't have a pedantic argument, you're clearly no true libertarian!

    Burn teh witch!

  • Killazontherun||

    New fangled libertarian I see. Back in the day when libertarian meant something our minds were coke idled and our arguments rambled. No pendant precision, just non stop stream of conscious until the skid was hit. You are all a bunch of straight edgers these days, and that explains all of this horrible argumentative coherence I see everywhere on libertarian blogs! No wonder no one takes libertarians seriously these days, no loose cannons shooting up the shit to horrify Mr and Mrs Suburbia on a Sunday.

  • BakedPenguin||

    If coke idles your mind, you're buying it wrong.

  • Killazontherun||

    How 'bout 'idylls', you soulless wretch.

  • Killazontherun||

    'Hey! I'll get my Strunk & White out and show you where that is not even a verb.'

  • ||

    It is now. Though I have to say, verbing DOES weird things.

  • Brett L||

    I think you mean "verbing weirds things".

  • ||

    Yes, it does do that.

  • mr simple||

    Definitely not buying with pendant precision.

  • Killazontherun||

    Maybe I was turning Eric Idle into a verb, did you even consider that possibility? No, you just want to throw people in river like all the other tight ass Puritans.

  • ||

    What's "Cleesing" then?

  • BakedPenguin||

    I'm as offended by your spelling as I am by your suggestion that I'm not on drugs.

  • Killazontherun||

    But that was our safe word.

    And I would never claim you are not on drugs. Else the cops don't pay me for narcing.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Definitely not buying with pendant precision.

    Technically correct is the best kind of correct.

  • Brett L||

    If Kluwe had to label himself, he'd say libertarian, but that doesn't quite sum it up either.

    Somebody send this guy a monocle and a decoder ring. He's discovered the secret on his own.

  • fish||

    Dressed like that in public? I don't think so!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    If you vote Yes on the Minnesota Marriage Amendment, you’re using the government to enshrine one definition of marriage for everyone, no matter their beliefs.

    That is absolutely not true. People can define marriage for themselves separate from what standard a special benefits-happy state uses to dole things out. This needs to be the libertarian position for those wanting to educate on the philosphy. Think how you want and stop relying on government to define you. Fuck.

  • Calidissident||

    How does that make what he's saying untrue regarding the people voting yes?

  • Citizen Nothing||

    People can also define taxation differently than how the state defines it. But they sure as hell are gonna pay.

  • Bee Tagger||

    This is only a problem for people whose definition of marriage includes governmental benefits and/or recognition.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    For fuckin' sure. Being authorized to pull the plug on a brain-dead "spouse"? Fuck that government shit!

  • Citizen Nothing||

    And fuck those people who want equal access to government roadz, too!

  • Bee Tagger||

    Yeah! We need government for this! There's no way private parties could arrive at this kind of arrangement!

    Strip government benefits from all marrieds, that's another, more freedomy step to equality.

  • ||

    You might want to polish up on the definition of "enshrine", FOE. Voting no is definitely voting to enshrine straight-only marriage in the law. That's it's already enshrined doesn't change that.

  • 1955||

    He needs to start practicing his kicking game. He sucked so bad last game the Vikings brought in other guy for a tryout.

  • ||

    Kluwe is fun on Deadspin comment threads too. Other good quote from his lustful cockmonster (damn, that is just fun to say) piece:

    This is more a personal quibble of mine, but why do you hate freedom?

    Fuck yeah Chris Kluwe.

  • mr simple||

    Anthony Kiedis is the new Viks punter?

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Wait, John Frusciante left the band...again?!

  • John-David||

    He also says "The way representative democracy works is that we vote for legislators, they pass laws, and then if we don’t like those laws, we vote for new legislators."

    I'm not sure that's how it's been working out.

  • christopher fisher||

    It is funny, Reason wants the government out of our lives until it comes to the issue of marriage, then Reason wants the strong arm of the government to define it, enforce it, and normalize divergent private views on it. As to homo marriage not effecting myself and my children, how about we bet? Even odds, any amount. When has ever changing a cultural norm ever "not effected" children in dramatic ways?

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