Reba McEntire: ‘Not My Job’ to Talk About Politics

December 15, 2018 Updated: December 15, 2018

Country singer Reba McEntire recently remarked that she doesn’t feel like it’s her job to discuss politics.

She told The Hill’s ITK blog, “That’s not my job,” when asked about her history of not speaking out on the topic.

When asked what she thought of other performers who are very vocal on their political views, she said she was very supportive.

“That’s why it’s so great to live here in the United States of America. You can vote in and you can say what you want to, and you can choose not to say what you want to,” McEntire said.

McEntire shared a similar sentiment while co-hosting on television talk show “The View” in February 2017.

“I take it this way,” she said. “They have paid their hard-earned money to come in there and fill a seat, parking, getting something at the concession stand, and going to eat before the concert, and I am there to entertain them, to take their worries away from them, so when they walk out, they can kind of have a little lilt in their step and [say], ‘Oh, that was such a great break from all the problems that I have to deal with during daily life.’ So I am not going to give them my political views.”

In March 2017, country singer Martina McBride made related statements in an interview with Fox News.

“I don’t feel like [it’s] my job to talk politics,” she said to the news outlet. “My job is to entertain people.”

Country Music Awards co-host Brad Paisley also made plans to leave politics out of the Nov. 14 show completely this year, saying “I’m not gonna touch that. I just don’t find politics funny anymore,” according to Taste of Country.

“I don’t know that it’s always music’s job to do (be political). It can be, but I also think that sometimes it’s music’s job to get you away from some of these things,” he told the publication.

This idea of staying away from publicly talking about politics may be becoming harder and harder for celebrities, according to Eric Kasper, associate professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and author of “Don’t Stop Thinking About the Music: The Politics of Songs and Musicians in Presidential Campaign.”

“Now that people both on the left and the right … are more attuned to (the political issues),” he told The Star, “more consumers are turning to those issues when they decide which movies they are going to watch and which albums they are going to buy.”

Perhaps as a result, some stars like Taylor Swift who have long been silent about politics have recently chosen to speak out.

“I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now,” said Swift in an Instagram post on Oct. 7.

Most notably, the large amount of criticism from many other celebrities against President Trump during his campaign and presidency could have a downside, said Steve Ross, a history professor at the University of Southern California and author of Hollywood “Left and Right: How Movie Stars Shaped American Politics” to The Star.

“Movie stars have been speaking out since World War One, so this is part of a long tradition in Hollywood,” said Ross. “The question they should be asking right now is, are you helping your cause, or doing it harm? And right now, I would suggest that many of the stars denouncing Trump are hurting their cause. There is a potential for great backfire.”

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