Neil Young lashed out at President Trump in a scathing open letter released Tuesday on the heels of the acclaimed Canadian-born musician obtaining U.S. citizenship last month.
Published on Mr. Young’s website, the missive harshly criticizes Mr. Trump before concluding with an endorsement of Sen. Bernard Sanders, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate.
The strongly worded letter also slams Mr. Trump for continuing to use one of Mr. Young’s songs at his reelection campaign rallies in spite of the musician’s repeated complaints.
Mr. Young, 74, has repeatedly spoken out against Mr. Trump since literally the start of the president’s election campaign in 2015.
The “Heart of Gold” singer was unable to cast a ballot for president in 2016, however, having only just recently becoming a U.S. citizen and being granted the right to vote.
Fully embracing his newfound dual-citizenship status, Mr. Young laid into Mr. Trump throughout the brief letter he released this week.
“You are a disgrace to my country,” Mr. Young’s letter begins.
“The United States of America, my country, is not a green on one of your branded golf courses that you can ride around on and damage so that other players cannot shoot straight,” Mr. Young wrote.
Mr. Young subsequently proceeded to rehash complaints about his music being used against this wishes at Mr. Trump’s recent reelection campaign rallies.
“Every time ‘Keep on Rockin’ in the Free World’ or one of my songs is played at your rallies, I hope you hear my voice,” Mr. Young wrote. “Remember it is the voice of a tax-paying U.S. citizen who does not support you. Me.”
The open letter ends with Mr. Young explaining his support for Mr. Sanders, a Vermont independent among the front-runners seeking the Democratic nomination to run against Mr. Trump.
“One of your opponents has the answers I like,” he wrote. “He is aiming at preserving our children’s future directly. He is not popular with the democratic establishment because unlike all the other candidates, he is not pandering to the industries accelerating Earth’s Climate Disaster, the end of the world as we know it. He is truly fighting for the USA. His initials are BS. Not his policies.
“We are going to vote you out and Make America Great Again,” he added.
Neither the White House nor Mr. Trump’s reelection campaign immediately answered messages seeking their reaction to the musician’s remarks.
Mr. Young’s “Rockin in’ the Free World” was played as Mr. Trump descended a Trump Tower elevator moments before declaring his candidacy in June 2015, prompting the singer to issue a statement within hours objecting to its usage.
Several other artists have subsequently complained about having their music played at Trump rallies, including Guns N’ Roses, Aerosmith and R.E.M., among others.
• Andrew Blake can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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