The country singer appeared on MSNBC’s “Deadline” alongside Rev. Al Sharpton to discuss vaccine hesitancy and his role as a country singer to address an audience that is seemingly exhibiting hesitancy.
The “Whiskey Lullaby” singer noted that he believes Americans in smaller communities will step up and get the vaccine once they understand how vital it is to protecting their friends, family and neighbors.
“I feel like knowing my people, where I come from, I’m from West Virginia,” he told the outlet. “A small town of 1200 people, this is the kind of community where immediately if a house is on fire, before the fire department can get there, there are a lot of people with buckets trying to put the fire out already. They band together, they do what it takes to help their neighbor. So all my fans… They are seeing disinformation everywhere, and they are being told that the water doesn’t put the fire out. So it is a really strange thing to try to be louder than that disinformation.”
He added: “I think that… When they realize that it is the patriotic thing, when they realize that this is for the greater good, they will do it.”
Country singer Brad Paisley believes it’s Americans’ patriotic duty to get vaccinated. (Monica Schipper/Getty Images)
As of Friday, around 65.1% of people in the U.S. have received at least one COVID shot, and that number has increased by less than one percent over the past two weeks. Fifteen states and Washington, D.C. have vaccinated 70% of their residents. Fifty-five percent of Americans are fully vaccinated.
Paisley noted that he believes the various incentives being offered to people who get the vaccine are helpful. He said he believes that it may be one of the only ways to convince people to get their shot before variants become a setback.
The singer doubled down on his assertion that getting the vaccine is a patriotic duty. He also bashed the “Hollywood elite” who he believes started the initial anti-vaccination movement that he believes laid the groundwork for COVID-19 vaccine misinformation.
“It is an interesting thing when you look at what happens and how this became what it is. I think back to the original anti-vaccine movement, which sort of started, I think, I could be wrong, but I see it as almost starting with the Hollywood elite that didn’t want their kids vaccinated because of a bunked report,” he explained. “I think that there is a level of reaching these folks that you have to say look, the way to be the most productive citizen, the way to be the person that helps, is to get this. The patriotic thing is when you raise your arm and say ‘America, get a shot in it. That is the way that you are the most patriotic.’”
The musician concluded his thoughts by calling for his fans to make the choice to get the vaccine.