One of the headliners at the Route 91 music festival, which was the scene of the mass shooting carried out by gunman Stephen Paddock in October of last year, is placing blame for the attack squarely on the NRA.
Eric Church performed at the event two nights before the attack was carried out. He says that his views on gun rights have changed “a little” since then.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Church said he still considers himself a “Second Amendment guy,” but blames the NRA and gun lobbyists for being a “roadblock” to sensible gun control.
“There are some things we can’t stop,” Church said. “Like the disgruntled kid who takes his dad’s shotgun and walks into a high school. But we could have stopped the guy in Vegas.”
“I blame the lobbyists. And the biggest in the gun world is the NRA,” he added.
“I don’t care who you are — you shouldn’t have that kind of power over elected officials. To me it’s cut-and-dried: The gun-show [loophole] would not exist if it weren’t for the NRA, so at this point in time, if I was an NRA member, I would think I had more of a problem than the solution,” he continued. “I would question myself real hard about what I wanted to be in the next three, four, five years.”
“I don’t think our forefathers ever thought the right to bear arms was that.”
Church’s comments were met with derision on social media.
Eric Church just committed career suicide @NRA
— FitLakeMom (@FitLakeMom) July 26, 2018
Church isn’t the first country music star to come under fire from fans for making comments that conflict with conservative narratives. In 2003, Dixie Chicks singer Natalie Maines slammed former President Bush over the U.S. invasion of Iraq. In the wake of her comments, country music stations across the U.S. pulled The Dixie Chicks’ music from the air. Station managers said their decisions were prompted by calls from angry listeners who deemed criticism of the Iraq invasion and its architects as being unpatriotic.
Featured image via screen grab/YouTube