Over a week ago, tragedy struck during a Jason Aldean performance at a country music concert in Las Vegas, as Stephen Paddock opened fire on the crowd from his hotel room, killing close to 60 people and injuring over 500 others in what is now the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
The incident has sparked massive debate about gun control in America, which is fairly predictable given the progressive principle of never allowing a disaster or tragedy to go to waste, especially when it can be used to grab more power out of the hands of citizens.
When the shooting first occurred, Aldean caught a lot of flak for not warning others to get down, but hightailing it off the stage. Many fans came to his defense, stating that he likely wasn’t even sure what was going on himself.
However, I’m not sure how many of his fans will be coming to his rescue this time around, if what Ultimate Fighting Championship president Dana White says is true.
Apparently Aldean was offered an opportunity to play the National Anthem before a UFC event where survivors of the dreadful attack would be in attendance, but refused, opting to play Saturday Night Live instead.
via The Daily Wire:
Dana White said the country singer’s team lied to him about why he couldn’t perform. He said he contacted Aldean’s camp to see if the singer would sing the national anthem at an ultimate fighting championship in Vegas on Saturday night. White says at least 15 survivors and hundreds of first responders were set to be in the house.
But White says Aldean’s people rejected the invite, saying the singer might never perform live again. Aldean was playing at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival when Stephen Paddock, 64, began shooting into the crowd from the Mandalay Bay hotel across the street in what would become the nation’s worst-ever mass shooting.
Aldean fled the stage, and his team said he was still too rattled to perform, according to White.
That same night, though, Aldean appeared on Saturday Night Live in New York City. The show didn’t do its usual political open, but instead featured Aldean paying tribute to both the victims of last Sunday night’s massacre in Las Vegas, and Tom Petty, who died from cardiac arrest this past week at the age of 66.
Aldean performed I Won’t Back Down, a 1989 hit by Petty.
White was infuriated with Aldean, taking the time to speak with TMZ where he gave the following statement:
White says he also reached out to several country music stars — telling us, “Country music was attacked. Those were country music fans.”
White says every single country act turned him down.
“Those are people who buy your albums and none of you country music people could sing the anthem in front of survivors and 1st responders?”
White offered a ton of praise to Everlast — who stepped in and performed instead.
“This isn’t about money. This is about the bad ass people who fought through this sh*t that this coward did.”
If this is 100 percent true and accurate — I have no reason to think White is stretching the truth — it definitely is a bit shady.
I mean, if he was just previously booked for SNL and didn’t want to break his commitment, he should’ve just said so instead of claiming it was due to fear.
However, perhaps what he meant was that he was still too rattled to come back to Vegas so soon after the attack.
Regardless, it’s always a good idea to be gracious to others and find out all the facts before jumping to conclusions.
What do you think? Should Aldean have cancelled with SNL and performed for survivors?