TED NUGENT Defends JASON ALDEAN's 'Small Town' Song, Says Critics Are 'Idiots': 'They've Got No Soul'
July 24, 2023
Ted Nugent has defended Jason Aldean over the country singer's controversial new song "Try That In A Small Town" which has generated headlines for its lyrical content as well as accompanying video.
The clip features footage of protests and robberies projected onto a courthouse in Columbia, Tennessee, where 18-year-old black man Henry Choate was lynched in 1927. The video also shows footage from the 2020 riots following the death of George Floyd to illustrate Aldean's message, which garnered criticism from those who allege the implications are inflammatory. The song's lyrics focus on the divide between people in cities and rural areas (or "small towns") where, according to Aldean, people aren't as tolerant of certain behavior, like "(cussing) out a cop" or "(stomping) on the flag" and setting iron fire: "Try that in a small town / See how far you make it down the road / Around here we take care of our own."
The lyrics point to gun ownership, which some say add to its threatening undertone: "Got a gun that my grandad gave me / They say one day they're going to round up / Well that shit might fly in the city. Good luck."
Speaking to Jimmy Failla of "Fox News Saturday Night", Ted stated about the "Try That In A Small Town" controversy: "I know there's a bunch of idiots out there, but you need to learn to get a kick out of the idiots. The idiots hate this Jason Aldean song, because they hate when we push back against violence. They always get it 180 degrees wrong. The song is against violence. The song is about self-defense. The song is about protecting your loved ones in your neighborhood.
"If you find fault with a song that celebrates protecting your loved ones in your neighborhood, you might be going down to Target to the Satan display and getting on your knees," he continued.
"These are just weird people. We dismiss them out of hand because they've got no soul. I laugh in their face."
As for which piece of advice he would give to Aldean, Nugent — who is no stranger to controversy himself, going up against liberals for years over hot-button issues like Second Amendment rights and freedom of speech — said: "I've actually responded to a bunch of social media posts about this, and I've said, 'Jason, the best Americans…' And not only just Americans, but because of the reach of social media, it's almost like Radio Free Europe. The reach of social media gets to good people all over the world. And all the good people in the world are saying what the Nugent family says: Go, Jason, go… We salute you and we stand with you.'"
Although the Country Music Television network initially aired the video for "Try That In A Small Town", it eventually yanked it after it garnered widespread attention over its lyrics and controversial imagery.
The network's decision to not air the video caused an uproar on Twitter, with some people calling for a boycott of CMT.
The video premiered on YouTube on July 14 and has been viewed more than 16 million times as of Monday morning (July 24).
Aldean defended the song in a written statement last week.
"In the past 24 hours I have been accused of releasing a pro-lynching song (a song that has been out since May) and was subject to the comparison that I (direct quote) was not too pleased with the nationwide BLM protests," he tweeted. "These references are not only meritless, but dangerous. There is not a single lyric in the song that references race or points to it- and there isn’t a single video clip that isn’t real news footage -and while I can try and respect others to have their own interpretation of a song with music- this one goes too far. "
The country music star, who is a vocal supporter of former U.S. president Donald Trump, went on to say that the lyrics refer to his childhood "where we took care of our neighbors, regardless of differences of background or belief. Because they were our neighbors, and that was above any differences."
He continued: "My political views have never been something I've hidden from, and I know that a lot of us in this country don't agree on how we get back to a sense of normalcy where we go at least a day without a headline that keeps us up at night. But the desire for it to — that's what this song is about."
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