Brenda Song was born in Carmichael, California, a suburb of Sacramento, to a Hmong (a southeast Asian ethnic group now mainly residing in Vietnam) father and a Thai mother who had been adopted by a Hmong family. When she was six years old, Song moved with her mother to Los Angeles,California to persue her acting career; the rest of the family followed two years later.
Song appears to be one of the few Disney starlets to not have succumbed to the party scene. She said in 2005:
Besides Hollywood grand-openings and award shows, I try to stay away from the parties. It’s so easy to be swept away from that whole scene because it’s expected of you. I’ve never drank or smoked in my entire life, but I’ve seen 15-year-olds drinking and smoking and I just think that’s gross.
It is possible–though completely unconfirmed–that this could be the result of a religious influence.
Song participates in tae kwon do, which is a secular activity, though heavily influenced by Buddhism and Taoism. It is also known that 40% of American Buddhists reside in Southern California. Combine this with the fact that her family is from Thailand, a 95 percent Buddhist country and Vietnam where Buddhism is the dominant religion, and there is good reason to suspect that song is Buddhist–in heritage at least.
Brenda Song appeared in the Our Time to Vote commercial in 2008 alongside a host of other stars, but the commercial didn’t ask viewers to vote for anyone in particular. Still, it indicates that Song is politically aware to some degree.
Of the 17,304,091 California voters registered for the November 4, 2008 general election, 44.4 percent of them were registered as Democrats, the largest party in the state. It is generally known that California is one of the most liberal states in America. It isn’t much of a logical leap to say that by Song, being raised in such a liberal environment, would have been influenced by liberalism and Democratic Party affiliations.
Song has been involved in many charities, indicating a social awareness. In 2006, she was hostess for the “A World Of Change” annual charity fashion show to benefit Optimist Youth Homes & Family Services. She performed at the 10th Annual L.A. Cancer Challenge and was part of the Disney Channel Games, which supported various charities including Foundation and UNICEF. In 2008, Song was part of the “Power of Youth carnival”, a benefit for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and in 2006 and 2007, she participated in the YMCA Healthy Kids Day in Chicago.
There is one tiny little thing that might, just might indicate liberal leanings. Song is a crusader for the environment and was a spokesperson for Disney’s environmental awareness campaign called Disney Friends for Change.
Ultimately, Song seems largely non-political, though if we had to say, we’d say slightly left of center. What do you readers think?
This article was written by Malik Nelson and Tom Kershaw