Tim McGraw is defending his decision to headline a concert in Hartford, Connecticut, this summer to benefit a Sandy Hook group, responding to critics who call it a “gun control fundraiser.”
Gun rights advocates took to Facebook and Twitter, calling the country singer a hypocrite for appearing in the event that will benefit Sandy Hook Promise, which seeks to protect children from gun violence.
Opening act Billy Currington withdrew and said on his Facebook page he's “never been one to take on controversial issues.”
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In December 2012, 20 first-graders and six educators were shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.
"I do feel strongly about honoring and supporting the Sandy Hook community and will be making a donation to a local organization," Currington added.
McGraw said in a statement to The Washington Post on Thursday that he supports gun ownership, but it requires education and safety. He said the concert is intended to help the community.
McGraw will perform the concert for Sandy Hook Promise at the XFINITY Theatre in Hartford on July 17.