A message for the children

Celebrities offer advice to their most impressionable audience

Children: Everybody loves them, and everybody agrees they're the future, but do they listen to what we tell them? Consistently, the answer is "no." But, like everyone else, children adore celebrities. In an ongoing mission to foster knowledge in the children of the world, The Onion A.V. Club presents this collection of celebrity responses to the question, "If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?"

Mike Judge wrote and directed Office Space and created the animated comedies Beavis And Butt-Head and King Of The Hill.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Mike Judge: "Honor your mother and father so your days may be long on the land. And watch King Of The Hill."

Liz Phair's albums include Exile In Guyville, whitechocolatespaceegg, and last year's Liz Phair.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Liz Phair: "Play."

O: Play games, play instruments, play what?

LP: Anything. Play, play, play. I'd like to free all the working children. Seriously. It's a horrible thing, as a mom, let me tell you.

Former Kids In The Hall troupe member Dave Foley went on to become the star of the hit comedy series NewsRadio and a host on Celebrity Poker Showdown.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Dave Foley: "Eat more fiber"?

Eddie Vedder fronts the band Pearl Jam.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Eddie Vedder: This is one you'd hate to be cheeky with, when talking to the children of the world... [Laughs.] Part of me wants to say "Eat your vegetables," but I'm sure they're being told that already. I don't know. "Enjoy your ride."

Among many other films, John Landis directed Animal House, An American Werewolf In London, The Blues Brothers, Coming To America, and Beverly Hills Cop III.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

John Landis: I'm tempted to say "Duck." But no. "Convince your parents to vote out Bush."

A contributing editor to the radio show This American Life, Sarah Vowell has written three books, the latest of which is The Partly Cloudy Patriot.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Sarah Vowell: "The third Harry Potter is the best. Also, your parents are just making it up as they go along."

Actor, director, writer, and occasional singer William Shatner is best known as Captain James T. Kirk on various incarnations of Star Trek.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

William Shatner: "Hope."

Stand-up comedian Steven Wright is known for his deadpan delivery and absurdist one-liners.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Steven Wright: "Try to do what you dream about doing, because you never know what's going to happen. There's a good chance it might come true."

Everybody Loves Raymond co-star Patricia Heaton wrote the book Motherhood & Hollywood: How To Get A Job Like Mine.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Patricia Heaton: "Drop Britney Spears like a hot potato." I don't get it. I feel it's culturally damaging that she's the icon of... It shocks me. It's so bad. It's really scary to me, because I'm from Cleveland, which is a big rock 'n' roll town, and I'm trying to get my kids to listen to Bruce and Southside Johnny and the Allman Brothers. I can't stand that manufactured pop stuff. It's horrible, and I think it's bad for girls in particular. Being the chairperson of Feminists For Life, it's so anti-feminist. Not that I'm opposed to women being sexy and sexual, but when they're 11 or 12, that's a problem.

Since starring in Mork & Mindy, Robin Williams has appeared in many films, including Flubber and Death To Smoochy.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Robin Williams: "Stock up."

Isaac Brock leads the band Modest Mouse, which is currently touring behind the 2004 album Good News For People Who Love Bad News.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Isaac Brock: "Grow the fuck up."

Directors, producers, actors, and enfants terribles Trey Parker and Matt Stone are most widely known as the minds behind South Park.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Matt Stone: "Give up. Just give up, now. Give in, give up."

Trey Parker: "Start fuckin'."

Ani DiFranco is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, label mogul, and rock icon.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Ani DiFranco: "Run!" [Laughs.] No, what would it be? Um... "Fuckin' turn off the TV." That would be a start.

Monty Python's Flying Circus member Terry Gilliam has directed such films as Brazil, The Fisher King, and Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Terry Gilliam: Oh, Jesus. Uh... "Don't buy an SUV."

Comedian Colin Quinn hosts the Comedy Central series Tough Crowd With Colin Quinn.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Colin Quinn: My message would be... I don't know how many languages you can say "Watch your back" in.

Independent comics icon Harvey Pekar is behind the long-running series American Splendor, and was the subject of the 2003 movie of the same name.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Harvey Pekar: Oh God, I don't know. Most places, they've got a hard way to go. I wish 'em the best, but I don't know what can be done about it, because the world is so screwed up politically.

Comics writer-artist Dave Sim recently completed the 26-year run of his independently published series Cerebus.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Dave Sim: "Don't make the mistake of believing that because you weren't punished immediately for a sin that there is no God or that sin goes unpunished. If you steal or lie or blaspheme against Him, God isn't going to hit you with a lightning bolt or turn you into a pillar of salt. He will give you space and time to repent. In some cases, that will be years. But ultimately, if you don't repent, you will be punished. When you see miserably unhappy adults who punish themselves with alcohol and unhappy relationships and who are filled with so much fear and hatred that it makes you afraid to think of being with them or being like them, they didn't get that way overnight. Somewhere, long ago, when they were your age, they intentionally did something wrong and decided, because they weren't hit with a lightning bolt, that they had 'gotten away with it.' Look at them. Do you think they 'got away with it'? And that's only in this world. Imagine what they're going to experience in the next world. Do the things that are right and don't do things that are wrong. You know the difference."

Arthur C. Clarke collaborated with Stanley Kubrick to conceptualize and produce 2001: A Space Odyssey. He has written more than 70 books, from science theory to science fiction.

The Onion: If you could send one message to the children of the world, what would it be?

Arthur C. Clarke: I don't know that I have a message just for the children, but for the world as a whole: "Don't panic." That's always a good idea.

More Article