With a former reality television star currently in the White House, it's been confirmed that a celebrity is capable of winning the highest office in the country, but if there's ever another one to do it, Garth Brooks says it won't be him.
"Trust me, no one would know which way to go with me because I am so both," he told Billboard. "I really am 'Let’s love one another, but don't forget we’re the defender of freedom all around the world, so let’s beef up.' People don't think you can do both. And that's right down my alley. That's why you can have 'We Shall Be Free' and 'American Honky Tonk Bar Association' at the same concert. Let’s love one another and let’s pull our own weight."
Brooks first mentioned the presidency while discussing the backlash he received after releasing "We Shall Be Free," his 1992 single that served as a call for peace.
"I didn't expect the backlash I got from 'We Shall Be Free' because it was just common sense," he said. "But yeah, man, here it comes. People going, 'Don't preach to me,' and I'm going, 'Oh s—, I didn't feel like I was preaching.' I just did a real feel-good song that was inspired off of what I was feeling pulling out of Los Angeles following the Rodney King verdict and watching those fires and going, 'Hey, man, everybody just settle down for a second and focus on loving one another.'"
The song includes the line "when we’re free to love anyone we choose," which many interpreted as support for gay rights. "That line was about everything from interracial marriage and marriages crossing religions to same-sex marriages," Brooks said. "If you truly love somebody, that's what I'm hoping, as a child of God, that we're doing. That whole line was just about, 'C’mon, man, see past the walls and love each other.'"
"We Shall Be Free," the first single from Brooks' 1992 album The Chase, peaked at No. 13, ending his streak of 13 consecutive Top 10 hits.
"You get caught up into the numbers, but the truth is this: You never care about it," he mused. "I'm not running for president, so I don't care what people as a whole think of me as an artist. What I care about is, is this music that I'm getting to be a part of changing somebody's life for the better? If you start trying to please everybody, then you're just going to water yourself down."