Luke Combs Comments on America’s ‘Contentious’ Political Climate
Luke Combs doesn't often talk about his political opinions, but in a new interview with the Independent, he comments on the current spirit of American politics. The singer shared his belief that America is undergoing a "contentious" political climate in which "nobody can even agree to disagree."
"Everything is so contentious and heated, and that's always been super frustrating to me," Combs tells the publication. "I think what makes our country great is people's ability to have their own opinions and have the ability to disagree. Right now, everyone is just so hot about everything. And that adds to the tension that was going on."
These statements echo the message his 2021 song "The Great Divide," a collaboration with Billy Strings. In the bluegrass tune that Combs framed as being apolitical, he and Strings sing about the ever-widening ideological divide in America.
"We're all so far, so far apart now / It's as deep as it is wide / We're about to fall apart now / If we can't reach the other side / We gotta find a way across the great divide," he sings in the chorus.
Although the song preaches unity, Combs landed in controversy from multiple parties after its release. Soon after, Margo Price shared photos of Combs with Confederate flag imagery. One photo was a screen capture from a 2015 music video, and another was a snap apparently showing a Confederate flag sticker on Combs' guitar.
Combs addressed the photos and apologized for his actions at 2021's Country Radio Seminar in Nashville.
"I am now aware how painful that image can be to someone else," he shared. "And no matter what I thought at the time, I would never want to be associated with something that brings so much hurt to someone else."
Not only did the Confederate flag images hurl Combs into hot water, but he says some people were upset about the overall message of "The Great Divide." Beyond that, Combs tells the New York Times that some fans were disappointed that he apologized for his past usage of the flag.
"There were fans that were upset that I apologized and fans that were glad I did," Combs says. "That was a tough time. Before it was all roses, then this thing happens and it's like, 'Hey man, you're a racist.' I've never been that political of a dude, but someone telling me I'm racist was a big problem for me, because I'm not racist."
Overall, Combs says his goal is to "stand up" for what is right, but it's also to bring people together and make others happy through music.
"I'm a guy that derives a lot of my happiness from making sure other people are happy," he says. "That's the nature of my job."