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NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - JUNE 09: Jason Aldean performs during day 1 of CMA Fest 2022 at Nissan Stadium on June 09, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.Jason Kempin/Getty Images

(LifeSiteNews) – Despite the steep decline of country music over the past two decades—best summed up in Alan Jackson and George Strait’s duet “Who Killed Country Music—the industry has been perhaps the last bastion of cultural conservatism in American’s entertainment industrial complex. Most of what passes for country music these days constitutes cliched stereotypes strung together with a good deal of summer boozing, sex, and smoking pot, but performers (a better word, in most cases, than “artists”) generally stay away from endorsing the various woke trends that are sure to alienate many of their consumers. 

There have certainly been aberrations, of course. Carrie Underwood made a public show of leaving the church she attended because it held to a biblical view of marriage, which was apparently unconscionable to the fourth season winner of “American Idol.” Rolling Stone published a column last August titled “Why Country Music Was (Finally) Ready to Come Out,” on the rise of a handful of LGBT-identified singers hitting the circuit. There have been a number of gleeful analyses since on how the most traditional—and one of the most American—of music genres is slowly going as gay as the cowboys in Brokeback Mountain. As the industry churns out the sorts of songs that young people want to hear just as the young embrace the LGBT movement, this was inevitable. 

Those new LGBT performers are embracing the role of social enforcers. Recently, Brittany Aldean, wife of country star Jason Aldean, posted a before-and-after makeup video to her 2.2 million Instagram followers with the caption: “I’d really like to thank my parents for not changing my gender when I went through my tomboy phase. I love this girly life.” Her husband commented underneath with a laughing emoji: “Lmao! Im glad they didn’t too, cause you and I wouldn’t have worked out.” As the inevitable backlash flowed in, Brittany wrote: “Advocating for the genital mutilation of children under the disguise of love and calling it ‘gender affirming care’ is one of the worst evils … Love is protecting your child until they are mature enough as an adult to make their own life decisions.” 

Further, she noted of her own children: “The other day Memphis wanted to be a dinosaur and tomorrow Navy will want to be a cat, they’re children.” Brittany defended herself later on Tucker Carlson’s show: “I think that children should not be allowed to make these life-changing decisions at such a young age … We have ages on everything. We have it for cigarettes, driving, military, voting … Yet for some reason, people think that we can let a child choose their gender so young? It’s very baffling to me.”  

All of that, of course, is classic country common sense. But the new kids on the block came for her immediately. Thirty-three-year-old country star Cassadee Pope tweeted: “You’d think celebs with beauty brands would see the positives in including LGBTQ+ people in their messaging. But instead here we are, hearing someone compare their ‘tomboy phase’ to someone wanting to transition. Real nice.” Thirty-two-year-old Maren Morris responded: “It’s so easy to, like, not be a scumbag human? Sell your clip-ins and zip it, Insurrection Barbie.” In short: If you’re not on board with sex changes for kids, shut up and sing, bigot. 

READ: Country singer Jason Aldean slams vaccine, mask mandates, praises non-masked fans

It isn’t at all surprising that younger country stars have embraced the LGBT milieu and are clashing with older, more conservative stars. Country stars with vocally conservative views are nothing new—Toby Keith, Trace Adkins, and of course, Jason Aldean. That’s why there was such a backlash when the Dixie Chicks went after George W. Bush—because they were swimming against the country current. But what is somewhat surprising is that the new country kids on the block appear to have accrued cultural clout already. The Nashville-based outfit the GreenRoom, Jason Aldean’s publicity firm for 17 years, have announced that they are dropping the star after his wife’s public opposition to genitally mutilating kids and his support for his wife. 

As GreenRoom co-owner Tyen Parrish carefully put it: “Music has always been and remains The GreenRoom’s core focus, so we had to make the difficult decision after 17 years to step away from representing Jason. We aren’t the best people for the gig anymore, but will always be big fans of his music — he is one of the greatest live entertainers in country music.” That, it seems, is not enough to save Aldean from getting dropped. This incident is simply one more example of the cultural sea change we are witnessing. If a star who rakes in millions and tops the charts can be canned by his publicity firm because he and his wife publicly oppose the genital mutilation of children in the most conservative music industry in America, what message does that send to those who do not have Aldean’s wealth, success, and power?

It is this: Shut up and sing, bigot. 

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Jonathon Van Maren is a public speaker, writer, and pro-life activist. His commentary has been translated into more than eight languages and published widely online as well as print newspapers such as the Jewish Independent, the National Post, the Hamilton Spectator and others. He has received an award for combating anti-Semitism in print from the Jewish organization B’nai Brith. His commentary has been featured on CTV Primetime, Global News, EWTN, and the CBC as well as dozens of radio stations and news outlets in Canada and the United States.

He speaks on a wide variety of cultural topics across North America at universities, high schools, churches, and other functions. Some of these topics include abortion, pornography, the Sexual Revolution, and euthanasia. Jonathon holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in history from Simon Fraser University, and is the communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

Jonathon’s first book, The Culture War, was released in 2016.