Music

In Defense of Willie Nelson

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Think green!

In January country music legend Willie Nelson rolled into Kenansville, North Carolina to play a show at the Duplin County Events Center. But after the cops got a whiff of his famously marijuana-friendly tour bus, the show did not go on. There is an upside, however. As The Jacksonville Daily News reports, thanks to the harsh bust, Willie and Family now have an unlikely new champion: State Sen. Charlie Albertson, who just cut a song defending the outlaw singer. As The Jacksonville Daily News writes:

"It just looks like a special effort was made to go on that bus and cite them with marijuana," said state Sen. Charlie Albertson, D-Duplin.

The song, called "Leave the Man Alone," refers to the Jan. 28 citations issued to six members of Nelson's band on either possession of marijuana or possession of non-tax-paid alcohol….

In the song, Albertson said that the law heard that "the outlaw was in town" and "took turns sniffing" around Nelson's bus.

"It was over before it started," the song says, referring to the concert. "The law had busted Willie's band."

Albertson sings that the event hurt the reputation of Duplin County. "Why don't they leave the man alone? Let him write and sing his songs," the song concludes.

Why indeed. After all, Willie is one of Reason's 35 heroes of freedom:

One of the great crossover artists in popular music, the Texas legend pulled off a Martin Luther King Jr.-like achievement by uniting hippies and rednecks in a single audience. An inadvertent hero to tax resisters everywhere, Nelson brought the battle against puritanism to the very roof of the Carter White House, where he famously smoked dope to relieve his—and our—national malaise.