Tuesday, March 11, 2014

11 Years Ago: DIxie Chicks Got It Right, Were Wronged

It was 11 years ago last night that the Dixie Chicks, extremely popular then and far from controversial, caused a massive stir when singer Natalie Maines declared on stage in London--a little more than a week before that their fellow Texas, President Bush, launched a war based on lies--"Just so you know, we're on the good side with y'all. We do not want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas."

Of course, hatred was quickly spewed in their direction by media types, political figures, and country music yahoos--who never get so excited with right-wing entertainers who make threats against a Democratic president--with boycotts announced.   Maines clarified two days later--"I feel the President is ignoring the opinions of many in the U.S. and  alienating the rest of the world."  But record sales and concert proceeds plunged. 

She then issued an apology of sorts:  "As a concerned American citizen, I apologize to President Bush because my remark was disrespectful. I feel that whoever holds that office should be treated with the utmost respect. We are currently in Europe and witnessing a huge anti-American sentiment as a result of the perceived rush to war. While war may remain a viable option, as a mother, I just want to see every possible alternative exhausted before children and American soldiers' lives are lost. I love my country. I am a proud American."

Good old true American Merle Haggard weighed in:
I don't even know the Dixie Chicks, but I find it an insult for all the men and women who fought and died in past wars when almost the majority of America jumped down their throats for voicing an opinion. It was like a verbal witch-hunt and lynching. 
While Bush himself argued: 
The Dixie Chicks are free to speak their mind. They can say what they want to say ... they shouldn't have their feelings hurt just because some people don't want to buy their records when they speak out ... Freedom is a two-way street ....
The Chicks then posed semi-nude on the cover of Entertainment Weekly with words they had been called slightly covering them, e.g. "Dixie Sluts."  But their career would never be the same.  Meanwhile, more than 4000 American troops and more than a 125,000 Iraqis would die in a war based on lies.  See my new book "So Wrong for So Long" for much more.

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