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Falwell Attacks Dixie Chicks, Recants Apology


The Associated Press, Jonesboro, Arkansas, Apr. 30, 2003

"The Rev. Jerry Falwell called the Dixie Chicks three 'French hens,' saying 'politics should end at the shore when you leave the country,' referring to antiwar remarks made by lead singer Natalie Maines. At a Mar. 10 concert in London, Maines told the audience in reference to President Bush's push for military action against Iraq: 'Just so you know, we're ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas.' After Maines' remarks, radio stations began boycotting the Dixie Chicks, even though she publicly apologized for her statement. Maines and the Texas-based trio's other members Emily Robison and Martie Maguire told A.B.C.'s Diane Sawyer in a recent interview that the fallout was too harsh for the offense and that they've always supported U.S. troops even though they questioned the war."
"Falwell said Maines was wrong to speak critically of the United States while overseas. 'You don't talk about your own country, especially during war,' he said Monday during an appearance at Jonesboro. In 2001, Falwell apologized for saying God had allowed terrorists to attack America because of the work of civil liberties groups, abortion rights supporters and feminists. He said his comments were ill-timed, insensitive and divisive at a time of national mourning. 'In the midst of the shock and mourning of a dark week for America, I made a statement that I should not have made and which I sincerely regret.' On Monday, Falwell, a Baptist minister, characterized his statement as a clarification and 'not so much as an apology.' 'But I don't sell records,' he said. 'And I don't do it in England and I don't do it in France. I do all of mine head to head, face to face in America as a taxpaying citizen.' "