Country music star Travis Tritt, who has come under fire for refusing to perform in venues where unvaccinated people can't come to enjoy his shows, told Newsmax Monday he was honored to sing the National Anthem Saturday night before the Atlanta Braves clinched their place in the World Series, and he's glad the Braves didn't cave in to cancel culture.
"It's always a tremendous honor, and I was just so thrilled that the Braves contacted me on Friday and asked me if I could come in and sing the National Anthem on Saturday for the game that turned out to be the clincher for the Braves," the Emmy-award singer told Newsmax's "John Bachman Now."
"I've been a lifelong Braves fan my entire existence, so it was a really a great thrill and a great honor for me."
Several in the mainstream media, including The Washington Post and USA Today, questioned the Braves' decision to invite Tritt, a hometown hero, to sing before the game.
He insisted, though, that his decision was more about being a Braves fan all his life and was about singing the anthem for his hometown team.
"I stand for people having the freedom of choice," Tritt told Newsmax. "When it comes to the vaccines obviously, you're going to take a lot of grief for that, and I have, but I've also got a tremendous amount of support, which is extremely encouraging to me because this is something that we can't do alone if we are going to preserve our freedoms in this country and our freedom of choice."
Tritt said he got a "tremendous amount of support" after singing at the game by people who told him that he did a great job performing and by fans who said they appreciated his stand for freedom.
"That really means a whole lot because obviously there's a tremendous amount of support out there for opposing these mandates," said Tritt.
Tritt noted that he decided to take his stand against performing in venues with vaccine mandates after his fans contacted him to let him know they'd already bought their tickets for venues that had already been booked well ahead of time.
"It just let me know that, you know, I've got to stand up and I'm going to say something, and I've got to do something. So I did cancel some shows where the mandates were in place," Tritt said.
"It's a financial hit to me, but it pales in comparison to the financial hit that so many people that work in all different jobs took, from nurses to doctors, to airline pilots to, even people in our military," he said. "There are so many people that are getting pushed out of their jobs because of these mandates, and I think that's just ridiculous."
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