Mike Rowe is a very popular figure who represents a lot of old-fashioned values that have gone by the wayside, but he has refrained from chiming in directly on politics for the most part.

He finally broke his silence on the election when he responded to a good question from a supporter.

The question from Jeremy Schneider begs Rowe to use his platform to encourage as many people as possible to go out and vote, because it’s so important. Rowe gives an incredibly thoughtful and wise answer. Here’s some excerpts:

Hi Jeremy
Thanks for the kind words. I appreciate it. I also share your concern for our country, and agree wholeheartedly that every vote counts. However, I’m afraid I can’t encourage millions of people whom I’ve never met to just run out and cast a ballot, simply because they have the right to vote. That would be like encouraging everyone to buy an AR-15, simply because they have the right to bear arms. I would need to know a few things about them before offering that kind of encouragement. For instance, do they know how to care for a weapon? Can they afford the cost of the weapon? Do they have a history of violence? Are they mentally stable? In short, are they responsible citizens?

Casting a ballot is not so different. It’s an important right that we all share, and one that impacts our society in dramatic fashion. But it’s one thing to respect and acknowledge our collective rights, and quite another thing to affirmatively encourage people I’ve never met to exercise them. And yet, my friends in Hollywood do that very thing, and they’re at it again.

Every four years, celebrities and movie stars look earnestly into the camera and tell the country to “get out and vote.” They tell us it’s our “most important civic duty,” and they speak as if the very act of casting a ballot is more important than the outcome of the election. This strikes me as somewhat hysterical. Does anyone actually believe that Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen DeGeneres, and Ed Norton would encourage the “masses” to vote, if they believed the “masses” would elect Donald Trump?


Rowe goes on to explain in detail why he thinks that voting is a right, but not a duty. Because it a solemn right, it needs to be taken seriously by those who have informed opinions, not just by everyone no matter what. He also points to the current election as a sign that not enough people take it seriously.

And that is why people respect Mike Rowe so much:

What do you think? Is Mike Rowe right about voting and the current election? Let us know in the comments section below!!

And for more wisdom from America’s hard workin’ Mike Rowe, check out these great Political Insider posts!

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