Vince Vaughn: Men Should Stop “Cutting Down” Women
Vince Vaughn says men need to treat women better. In a new Playboy interview, the actor discusses his libertarian politics, time dating Jennifer Aniston, and belief that hookup culture needs to be a little more friendly toward females.
The magazine asks Vaughn whether women were throwing themselves at him when he first hit big with Swingers in the 1990s. “I always had a lot of fun with girls, even before Swingers,” says Vaughn. “It’s interesting; I was a late bloomer and never really found my way with the opposite sex until later in high school. I think I was 17, maybe 19, when I lost my virginity. At a certain point I guess it kicked in. But I was never someone who needed to be with a new woman every night. That was never my thing.”
He explains, “I always had an easy time joking and getting along with women, and I liked to go out and have fun and talk and joke and meet people and dance. But I was never a pickup artist, per se. I have two older sisters, so I always felt comfortable with women and respected them.”
“What I love about my character from Swingers, Trent, is how much fun he has with women,” continues Vaughn. “It comes from a pure and positive place. Now it’s such a different thing. Gaming on women has become almost like the dark arts. Like, if you’re not cutting her down or using psychological tricks to make fun of her, you won’t get anywhere.”
He says, “I would argue it’s the opposite. I would suggest that if you take the avenue of putting a woman down or making fun of her so she feels insecure enough to go out with you, you’re ultimately screwing yourself. I mean, let’s face it, if you require coaching and techniques to get a woman, it’ll come out as dishonest and you’ll probably end up unhappy or alone. I much prefer Trent’s charming way with women to this more menacing approach you see now.”
Before he became a married dad of two, Vaughn dated Aniston, although both of them were unwilling to discuss the relationship much at the time it was happening. Vaughn now says of Aniston, “You know, she’s great. For me personally — and I think most well-known actors who are together feel this way — I never enjoyed the paparazzi side of it. You like someone and you’re spending time with them; that’s separate and that was all fine. But I really spent most of that time finding ways not to be drawn into the attention. I think lying low and not talking about it put me in a good position later, because I just wasn’t part of anything.”
Vaughn departs from a lot of his liberal Hollywood in terms of his politics, which he describes as libertarian. The star explains, “I like the principles of the Constitution and the republic, which is a form of government built around the law. A republic did very well in Rome until they got a lot of central power and Caesar decided he knew what was best for everyone. That type of government works if you’re looking to start welfare programs, if you’re going to conquer the world and use force a certain way. But even back then, it didn’t work. More and more people went on the dole and others went bankrupt, and businesses couldn’t afford to pay their staff.”
He’s wary of the federal government’s competence. “You see that in the foreign policy of force, where the United States decides to go into another country to make things turn out a certain way,” says Vaughn. “It doesn’t work. It causes more problems. Just look at any of these undeclared wars. You’re suggesting at gunpoint that you’ll decide how things will go. The results haven’t gone well. I’ve been over to Afghanistan and Iraq. I’ve been with the USO. I’ve gone over with movies and done stuff. I care a lot about all the kids and families in those situations. It can’t be easy. But I don’t agree with a foreign policy that says you can send troops places without declaring a war and without having a plan to win the war.”
Vaughn continues, “I feel the same way domestically. If you look at America today, there’s a real want to use force for the issues people believe in. You want whatever you believe in to become law. You’re going to make this drug legal and that one illegal. I don’t think that’s the government’s job to decide. I think it’s up to the individual. We’re all different. One kid is going to start drugs at a young age. Another person won’t touch the stuff. Another person will take a puff and go to sleep. We don’t all share the same consistent behavior, and the individual should be innocent until proven guilty. They should be allowed to decide what’s in their interest, what makes sense for them, unless they commit fraud or physical force or take someone’s property.”
He supports gun ownership. “I believe in the right to defend yourself if need be,” says Vaughn. “Hopefully you’re never in that situation, but I think you’re fairly naive to believe there will never be a cause for self-defense. But again, I believe it’s up to the individual. I don’t believe rights come in groups. You shouldn’t get more or fewer rights because of what you believe in or what nationality you were born into.”
For that reason, Vaughn dislikes affirmative action. “You’re evaluating someone based on race, which is racism. Rights don’t come to you because you’re a man or a woman or African American or European or Jewish,” says the actor. “And I certainly don’t think the federal government should be in the business of deciding things or handing out money based on factors like these. It’s the same with same-sex marriage. Who cares what people feel about each other? Let people decide for themselves who they can marry. It’s not the government’s job. It’s between you and your partner and your church or synagogue or whatever you believe in.” What do you think about what Vaughn has to say?