RHOSLC The Politics of Lisa Barlow

The politics of Real Housewives of Salt Lake City center-snowflake Lisa Barlow have been called into question.
In an Instagram post from early 2021, convicted felon Jen Shah used hashtags to throw her fellow castmate under the bus.

The hashtags are meant to draw attention to Barlow’s support of Ted Cruz during the 2016 presidential primary.
Many believe donations to the controversial Republican candidate tell the whole story… but there’s a lot to understand about where Lisa Barlow stands on the issues.

From participating in LGBTQI+ pride events, bringing attention to Equality Utah, supporting progressive policy, and donating to vulnerable communities, there’s more to the “Mormon 2.0” than what you think you know.

Lisa Barlow’s campaign donations

Yes it’s true, Lisa Barlow made four campaign donations to Senator Ted Cruz. To some it may not be the fashionista’s best look, as many on Twitter have expressed their disappointment:

While the contributions alone are enough for some people to shut her out, context is extremely important.

This post from Reddit breaks down the nuance of exactly what it meant for a Utah Mormon to vote for Cruz during the political climate of the time. Those who empathize with the “Anyone but Trump” mentality may have a change of heart.

Lisa Barlow and Political Donations from BravoRealHousewives

One may also find interesting the dollar amount of Barlow’s donations. Many believe that the richest housewife on RHOSLC splurged for the cause, when actually she gave a mere $400 to the Cruz campaign.

If you still believe these past actions are enough to write the Housewife off, you’ll be pleased to know Lisa Barlow’s current platform is doing a lot of good for Utah and beyond.

LGBTQI+ pride

Supporting the LGBTQI+ is still seen as controversial for many Utah residents. An excerpt from the HRC reports that the Church of Latter Day Saints typically takes a hardline approach to gay rights:

The Church considers Mormons who act on feelings of same-sex attraction to have disobeyed church teachings on morality and thus are subject to ecclesiastical discipline. They may be (1) placed on probation (for those desiring to change their behavior), (2) “disfellowshipped” (excluded from participating in the sacraments for a finite period of time while they correct their behavior), or (3) excommunicated.  Members who face a disciplinary council and refuse to repent—or insist that their feelings are integral to who they are—almost always are excommunicated. They lose their membership and cannot participate in any way other than attend meetings. They also lose the eternal ties that bind them to their families and their church.

One person who has no issue showing they’re an ally, however, is Lisa Barlow..

From participating in Salt Lake City Pride events to posting her support publicly on social media, it’s clear Barlow is not afraid to stand by those who identify as LGBTQI+, despite what her religion says.

Equality Utah

Social media posts can be written off by naysayers as performative, but it’s impossible to deny the direct work Lisa Barlow is doing with Equality Utah, “Utah’s Premier LGBTQ Civil Rights Organization.”

The org is set on “changing the hearts and minds” of the conservative population of the state, including Mormons who don’t traditionally support these issues. This is radical work and the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star is spearheading the cause.

In a 2021 YouTube video, Barlow tells Equality Utah how she doesn’t feel like she “fits in the box” of traditional Mormonism, one of many reasons she relates to anyone who identifies as “different.”

The star also leads panels herself, including headlining this Sold Out 2022 QTalk, “Equality Utah’s QTalks Queer Lecture Series.”

Lisa Barlow backs Democrat Derek Kitchen

As mentioned in the previously referenced Reddit post, Barlow supports Utah State Senator Derek Kitchen, who campaigned on toughening up gun laws. Interesting to note, he’s not Mormon.

The youngest member of the Utah State Senate, and the only openly LGBTQ+ member of the legislature, Kitchen identifies as Humanist.

While past donations tell one story, Barlow has been associated with the registered Democrat for the last several years through many Vida Tequila events, and has been putting direct efforts towards him and other progressive candidates.

Fresh Wolf Foster Care Initiative

A heartfelt Instagram post in February of 2021 explains yet another issue that’s near to Lisa’s heart: supporting children in the foster care system. This is a topic close to the Barlow family, as patriarch John was in and out of the system himself as a child.

“Jack and Henry created @freshwolfproducts with a giveback,” Barlow captioned a photo of the Barlow men. “John was given up at birth, adopted, returned – did a short stay in Foster Care and then adopted again. We give a 2-1 shampoo/conditioner to displaced youth and foster for every unit sold. Let’s #colorutahpurple and help other foster families and kids.”

Fresh Wolf boasts its mission right on their website: “Professional salon quality men’s grooming products with a purpose. For every product sold we donate to a child in the foster care system.”

Hear in her own words how the star is giving back to vulnerable communities:

The Liberal side of Lisa Barlow

There are two sides to every story, and then there is the truth. Some fans have their mind made up that the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star is a promoter of a republican agenda, while others champion the extensive work she’s done which shows otherwise.

Conservative sympathizer or liberal activist? When it comes to the politics of Lisa Barlow, the real story seems to lie somewhere in between.

Ashley Marie is a writer for Starcasm and the personality behind Twitter’s @RealityByAshley. You can contact Ashley via Twitter or email at realitybyashley(at)gmail.com

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