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Vox article calling out Dolly Parton’s ‘dark side’ is ‘off the rails’: John Rich

  • March 01, 2021

John Rich: Vox’s critique of Dolly Parton's 'dark side’ is ‘off the rails’Video

John Rich: Vox’s critique of Dolly Parton’s ‘dark side’ is ‘off the rails’

The country music artist reacts to a Vox article criticizing Dolly Parton for staying silent on politics.

Fox Nation host and country music artist John Rich blasted left-wing news website Vox on Monday for their “off the rails” critique of Dolly Parton’s supposed “dark side.”

During an appearance on “Fox Friends,” Rich called Parton one of the most “pure-hearted” and “loving” people in all of America and criticized Vox for attacking her for remaining silent about divisive politics.


“I read this story and I thought, have these folks attacked everybody and now they’re so far down the list they have to make up an attack on Dolly Parton? They talk about anti-fascist and all this other stuff, you know fascism is the suppression of opposition, but they are attacking Dolly for things she hasn’t even said,” Rich added.

“You talk about going off the rails? This is something else.”

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Rich said he views the rhetoric as another example of some on the left who want to “control the narrative” and de-platform certain viewpoints. 

On Friday, Vox published an article titled “How Dolly Parton became a secular American saint,” in which Parton is criticized for not engaging in political rhetoric and declaring that she loves everyone regardless of their views.

“Dolly Parton is beloved because she has devoted her career to standing for love. And, usefully, she is willing to be ambiguous about what exactly that love means and how much it includes people that those on different sides of the political aisle consider their enemies,” wrote Vox writer Constance Grady. “But in a post-Trump America, is Dolly Parton’s love enough?”

“America in the 21st century is no time for a secular pop saint,” Grady wrote. “And there’s a dark side to Dolly’s ability to appeal, Christ-like, to all people at all times.”

The Vox piece drew criticism on social media from conservatives, including “The View’s” Meghan McCain, who wrote, “You guys aren’t gonna cancel @DollyParton – you’re just not. I’ve had enough.”

In early February, Parton was previously criticized for her Super Bowl advertisement with website builder company Squarespace.

In the video, she performs a “reimagining” of her famous song, “9 to 5,” which NBC writer Kim Kelly called “gig economy propaganda” and “tone-deaf” support of working overtime.


“Now, Parton’s silvery voice is being used to promote the false virtues of working overtime, when so many gig economy workers are barely scraping by and the tech companies who employ — but misclassify — them are raking in boffo profits. The gig economy is a wretched alternative to a stable paycheck and proper benefits, and efforts to paint it as a matter of “independence” or “being one’s own boss” downplay how hard it is for so many gig workers to make ends meet,” Kelly wrote.

In a Feb. 2019 interview with Fox News, the country music legend talked about why she has always stayed out of political commentary. 

“Of course I have my own opinions, but that don’t mean I got to throw them out there because you’re going to piss off half the people,” she said. 

The Federalist, Vox and NBC News contributed to this report.

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