- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 22, 2003

Country music star Travis Tritt has had it with celebrities exploiting their fame to sway public opinion against war in Iraq.
Mr. Tritt, whose hits include "Can I Trust You With My Heart" and "Help Me Hold On," declared on his Web site (www.travis-tritt.com) this week that the anti-war rhetoric the Dixie Chicks recently offered fans at a London concert "is destructive and damaging to the morale of our servicemen and women and to our country in general."
Particularly galling to the singer is that the blow was struck by a country group. "Country music has a history of being a voice for the working man with a long-standing tradition of being a patriotic supporter of our nation and its military," he said.
What's more, they give celebrity a bad name. "Harsh words and half-baked opinions by people in the spotlight help no one and reflect poorly on us all," he continued.
"Fans ask me all the time what they can do to be heard, and I tell them the best way to have an impact is to hit 'em in their pocketbook," Mr. Tritt said. "Don't spend your money on what they're selling, be it movies, magazines or music."
But if it's true that celebrities who can't get work would stop spouting half-baked propaganda how does one explain Janeane Garofalo?


SCORECARD
For those of you keeping score at home, here is a sampling of celebrity opinion on the war in Iraq:

Chrissie Hynde
The Pretenders' frontwoman told fans at a recent concert that she hopes the United States loses the war, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. "Bring it on. Give us what we deserve," she shouted.

System Of A Down
The group posted links on its Web site (www.systemofadown.com) highlighting anti-war rallies.

The Beastie Boys
The Boys posted a new anti-war song on their Web site (www.beastieboys.com) called "In a World Gone Mad … ." Says Beastie Adam Yauch online: "A war in Iraq … can only result in the deaths of many innocent civilians and U.S. troops. If we truly are striving for safety, we need to build friendships, not try to bully the rest of the world." No blood for oil, dawgs. Fight for your right to party.

The Dave Matthews Band
On his Web site (www.davematthewsband.com), Mr. Matthews ranted: "Regime change? Shouldn't that be up to the people of the region and the people of Iraq?"

Joe Jackson
The singer-songwriter ("Is She Really Going Out With Him?") told the Boulder, Colo.-based Daily Camera newspaper, "Some artists get something that I can only describe as a guilty conscience … they think they should justify their position in some way by taking political stances … and I don't really agree with that."

Neil Young
"We're having a good time tonight, but we're gonna kill a lot of people next week," the bedraggled rocker said at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremonies earlier this month.

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