Singer Rosanne Cash, daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash and his first wife Vivian Liberto, penned a scathing op-ed in the New York Times on Tuesday calling on her fellow country musicians to stand up against the National Rifle Association (NRA) and demand stricter gun control laws after the Las Vegas country music festival mass shooting that left at least 59 dead and more than 520 injured.
“For the past few decades, the National Rifle Association has increasingly nurtured an alliance with country music artists and their fans,” Cash wrote. “You can see it in ‘N.R.A. Country,’ which promotes the artists who support the philosophical, if not economic, thrall of the N.R.A., with the pernicious tagline ‘Celebrate the Lifestyle.’”
“That wholesome public relations veneer,” she continued, “masks something deeply sinister and profoundly destructive. There is no other way to say this: The N.R.A. funds domestic terrorism.”
“A shadow government exists in the world of gun sales, and the people who write gun regulations are the very people who profit from gun sales. The NRA would like to keep it that way.”
“I encourage more artists in country and American roots music to end your silence. It is no longer enough to separate yourself quietly. The laws the NRA would pass are a threat to you, your fans, and to the concerts and festivals we enjoy,” she wrote.
“The stakes are too high to not disavow collusion with the N.R.A,” she concluded. “Pull apart the threads of patriotism and lax gun laws that it has so subtly and maliciously intertwined. They are not the same.”