During a recent town hall event, Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley played country music star Jason Aldean’s song, “Try That In A Small Town,” for the crowd awaiting her speech.
Aldean’s song has made headlines in recent days as the left and their allies in the mainstream media have attempted to smear it as “racist” and “pro-lynching.” While the anti-rioting and anti-looting lyrics do not include a single mention of race, critics have automatically assumed without evidence that the lyrics were attacking Black people.
If you think Jason Aldean’s song calling out LOOTERS and CRIMINALS is racist, it kind of sounds like you’re the racist.
— CJ Pearson (@thecjpearson) July 19, 2023
Haley — who previously served as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations under former President Donald Trump — played the controversial, yet popular song during her Thursday town hall event in Greenville, South Carolina.
The Republican presidential candidate shared a video of the event on Twitter. The 20-second clip showed the crowd listening to Aldean’s song while waiting for Haley to give her speech.
“You all know I love music,” Haley wrote in the tweet. “Tonight in Greenville we added a new song to the playlist: Jason Aldean’s ‘Try That in a Small Town.’”
You all know I love music… tonight in Greenville we added a new song to the playlist: Jason Aldean's "Try That in a Small Town." pic.twitter.com/1qzlORFXpm
— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) July 20, 2023
Playing the song at her event makes Haley the latest GOP politician to express support for Aldean amid the backlash from his song — joining Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem in standing up for the country singer.
In the music video for Aldean’s song, the pro-law-and-order lyrics play over clips of rioting and looting that took place during the violent George Floyd riots in 2020. The video shows Aldean performing the song in front of a courthouse alongside footage of “a flag burning, protesters screaming and attacking police in various scenarios, and robbing a convenience store,” Billboard reported.
The song has since skyrocketed to the number-one spot on the iTunes chart, despite being pulled from Country Music Television (CMT).
The iTunes charts have spoken – Jason Aldean's "Try That In A Small Town" is number one.
Whenever they try and censor us, we only go stronger.
Time for CMT to get the Bud Light treatment. pic.twitter.com/NW3EpJSp7y
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) July 19, 2023
Far-left outlets have attacked Aldean for the song — including the Daily Beast, which published an article with the headline “Jason Aldean Catches Heat for Racist, Pro-Gun Lyrics: ’a Modern Lynching Song.’”
Meanwhile, conservatives are celebrating the song for calling out “the left-wing riots, soft-on-crime governance in cities, gun control, and other leftist degradation.”
Jason Aldean just released an absolutely epic music video for the song "Try That In a Small Town" that rips into the left-wing riots, soft on crime governance in cities, gun control, and other leftist degradation. pic.twitter.com/dUYzGbnvc6
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) July 17, 2023
Aldean responded to the backlash in a lengthy tweet.
“NO ONE, including me, wants to continue to see senseless headlines or families ripped apart… ‘Try That In A Small Town,’ for me, refers to the feeling of a community that I had growing up, where we took care of our neighbors, regardless of differences of background or belief,” Aldean wrote, in part.
In the past 24 hours I have been accused of releasing a pro-lynching song (a song that has been out since May) and was subject to the comparison that I (direct quote) was not too pleased with the nationwide BLM protests. These references are not only meritless, but dangerous.…
— Jason Aldean (@Jason_Aldean) July 18, 2023