Politics : Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?

Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?

This is a question that Jeet Heer of The New Republic explored last Friday, after a new CNN poll found that presidential hopeful Rand Paul, who happens to be the favorite among libertarians, is very competitive in the primaries amongst male voters, but almost completely rejected by females. This is a problem that has long haunted conservatism, but it is even more drastic for ultra-right wing libertarianism.

In a 2014 Pew poll, it was found that about one in ten Americans describe themselves as libertarian, and men were more than twice as likely to be libertarians. In a 2013 Pew poll that Heer states in his article, it was found about two-thirds (68 percent) of American’s who identify as libertarians are men, and 94 percent are non-hispanic whites. Compare this to "steadfast conservatives," who were found to be 59 percent male and 87 percent white, or "business conservatives," found to be 62 percent male and 85 percent white, according to another survey done by Pew. Clearly, the entire conservative movement is dominated by white males, but libertarians are the most male-dominated.

Obviously this is a major problem for anyone who is hoping for libertarianism to take off in American politics. So why are libertarians mostly white guys? Heer points out a few different possibilities that some libertarian writers have offered. One of them being that libertarianism has attracted many male-dominated subcultures, like computer programming (think Silicon Valley), gaming, mens-rights activists, and organized humanism/Atheism, and another, argued by Katherine Mangu-Ward, that libertarianism has long been a fringe movement, and fringe movements tend to be dominated by men.

Okay, so libertarianism attracts nerdy white males, but surely these are not the only ones making up the dedicated crowd? While looking at the larger conservative movement, it becomes a bit more clear that the hostility towards government and collective movements in general tends to attract white males who want to preserve their dominance in a society where they are quickly becoming minorities.

Libertarianism is inherently opposed to collective movements, and collective movements have long fought to achieve equal rights for women, minorities, workers, etc. Is it any surprise that libertarianism attracts white (and generally privileged) men? If we take a look at the larger conservative movement, a similar story presents itself.

Last year, a study at Northwestern University found that white, independent-minded American’s tended to shift towards conservatism when they found out that demographic changes would be making them minorities. “Perceived group-status threat, triggered by exposure to majority-minority shift, increases Whites’ endorsement of conservative political ideology and policy positions,” wrote the researchers, Maureen Craig and Jennifer Richeson. This study seems to confirm that conservatism, for many white Americans, is the last bastion of hope against the inevitable decline of white dominance.

You can not make a nation great. You can give people the freedom to make themselves great. The nation WILL follow.

Re: Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?

Isn't libertarian just another word for pedophile?

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Re: Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?

Yeah… Pretty much…

Re: Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?



Slayer of Loser Tito the Retard.

Re: Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?

Filmboards is very preoccupied with race. It's the same exact people from IMDb. You guys have been obsessed with skin color, nationality, cultural identity and gender roles for over 10 years now. How about getting the fuck over your weird fixation now?

Re: Why are libertarians so overwhelmingly white and male?

First, you should link your source.

Second, this stuff is not rocket science. Women and minorities are more likely to seek some type of government assistance whether it be affirmative action, anti-discrimination laws et al. Libertarians advocate small government. Duh.

Uh, look man. Make tool! Caveman. No fool!
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