John Rich Defends Carrie Underwood After She Liked Controversial Anti-Mask Tweet

Carrie Underwood found herself in hot water over supporting some dangerous COVID-19 misinformation, and a fellow country star is speaking up on her behalf. On Tuesday, The Wrap reported that Underwood liked a video on Twitter of a conservative commentator denouncing mask mandates. Her apparent support for the controversial stance drew ire from social media, and conservative country singer John Rich tweeted his thoughts on the backlash. "I say [Carrie Underwood] can like whatever tweet she wants to like," he tweeted. "Who are 'they' to shout her down? Watch out, she's a tough Okie gal:) You see what's going on here? It's 'freedom of speech unless you disagree with the mob.' #CarrieTakeThe Wheel"

On Thursday, far-right pundit Matt Walsh posted a video in which he denounced mask mandates in schools in Nashville. In the video, Walsh speaks at a Nashville school board meeting, during which he makes a series of false statements about COVID-19 and the use of masks amid the ongoing pandemic. At one point, he claimed that COVID-19 poses "almost no threat to our kids at all" (NPR reported that COVID-19 cases among children have been increasing as of late amid the rise of the delta variant, leading to an increase in child hospitalizations). He also said that making children wear masks while in school was akin to "child abuse." In his caption for the video, Walsh called a mask mandate for children "cruel and indefensible."

It's unclear when Underwood liked Walsh's tweet. But, as of the time of this article's publication, Underwood's Twitter account still includes the tweet under its "liked" tweets. Walsh took to Twitter on Tuesday to respond to the news. He wrote a series of tweets in which he downplayed the situation. The conservative commentator wrote, per The Wrap, "Carrie Underwood liked my video and now the mob is coming for her. She should know better than to like something that they don't like. This is an unforgivable sin."

"How long before Carrie Underwood officially renounces me? I give it 12 hours, tops," Walsh wrote in a subsequent tweet. "I could be wrong though. I'm basing this on our general experience with celebrities who face public backlash from the left. In fairness, she could be the outlier. Time will tell." While Underwood has not yet responded to these reports, plenty of her fans on Twitter have. Based on their reactions, many of those fans aren't happy to see that Underwood seemingly supported this anti-mask message.


"It's not just that Carrie Underwood liked an anti-mask tweet," one fan wrote. "It's that Carrie Underwood liked an anti-mask tweet from Matt Walsh, one of those most negligently histrionic voices on the topic of protecting kids from COVID." Another weighed in with, "So Carrie Underwood is an anti-masker? Jesus take the wheel indeed."