Brad Paisley really, really wants everyone to get the COVID-19 vaccine. The Grand Ole Opry member recently spoke out about the need for people to receive the vaccine, saying it’s not only the healthy thing to do, it’s the patriotic thing to do as well.
“I feel like knowing my people, where I come from — I’m from West Virginia, 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. They’re trying to put the fire out already,” Paisley tells MSNBC. “They band together, they do what it takes to help their neighbor. I think all my fans have been fed — they are seeing disinformation everywhere, and they’re being told that the water doesn’t put the fire out. So it’s a really strange thing to try and be louder than that disinformation. 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.”
Paisley is also a fan of whatever will work to get people vaccinated, including the various rewards people receive if they receive the vaccine.
“I also think the incentives work,” Paisley maintains. “The carrot on a stick, the idea of positive reinforcement, where tickets are given to people who are vaccinated. I like the lottery systems that states are doing. I like the fact that Governor Justice in West Virginia did a hundred bucks a person when they got vaccinated. It’s a shame we have to, but at the same time, whatever it takes, because the variant, it’s coming.”
Paisley is already back on the road, with everyone on the road with him already vaccinated.
“It is an interesting thing; I really have not had this discussion with many,” Paisley reflects. “I know a lot of people have encouraged their band and crew. My entire band and crew, and anyone that’s going out on the road, is vaccinated. They were really great about it. I just basically encouraged it, and said, ‘We are going to meet people in every state. It’s safest if we go there with this armor on,’ and they went and did it.'”
Paisley blames a certain group of people for discouraging the vaccine, which is why he is being so vocal about supporting it.
“It’s an interesting thing when you look at what happens and how this became what it is,” Paisley says. “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 bunk report. 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 to do, when you raise your arm and say ‘America, get a shot in it,’ that is the way that you are the most patriotic.
“I don’t think they understand necessarily all of the things that go into this about the patriotic moment we’re in, how as a nation we are stronger with this, because I think you’re going to have a choice,” he adds. “The choice is get the vaccine, and you don’t get COVID. The other choice is, you get the COVID, and you don’t get the vaccine. And it kind of feels like it’s a really important patriotic moment for all of us.”
Paisley is back at radio with “City of Music.” He will headline Nashville’s July 4 celebration, Let Freedom Sing! Find all of his upcoming tour dates at BradPaisley.com.