Maren Morris Might Skip the CMA Awards Over Aldean Feud: ‘I Don’t Feel Comfortable Going’
Maren Morris is among the nominees for one of the most important awards at the upcoming 2022 CMA Awards, but she's not sure she's going to be in attendance.
In a new interview, the Grammy-winning country and pop artist says she doesn't feel "comfortable" going due to a recent, very public back-and-forth exchange with Jason Aldean's wife, Brittany, over gender-affirming care for transgender youth.
Morris' most recent album, Humble Quest, is nominated for Album of the Year in 2022, but Morris tells the Los Angeles Times that she's on the fence about attending the awards ceremony in November, where she's likely to run into the Aldeans.
"Honestly, I haven’t decided if I’m gonna go," Morris states. "I’m very honored that my record is nominated. But I don’t know if I feel [at] home there right now. So many people I love will be in that room, and maybe I’ll make a game-time decision and go. But as of right now, I don’t feel comfortable going."
Morris' public feud with Brittany Aldean began over comments the social influencer posted during an Aug. 23 Instagram Reel that showed her putting on her makeup.
"I'd really like to thank my parents for not changing my gender when I went through my tomboy phase," Aldean wrote, adding, "I love this girly life."
A number of social media users denounced those remarks as transphobic, including Cassadee Pope, who responded to Aldean's words indirectly online. Morris then weighed in in the comments below, referring to Aldean as "Insurrection Barbie" without naming her.
The fiery exchange escalated from there, with celebrities including Candace Owens, RaeLynn and Brandi Carlile showing up to voice support for one side or the other.
Brittany Aldean later responded to Pope via Instagram Stories, writing about protecting children and equating gender-affirming care with "genital mutilation." That led to Aldean granting Tucker Carlson an interview on Fox News, during which he labeled Morris a "lunatic" and opined that he hoped she left country music. Morris later shared a humorous screenshot that aired during the segment:
Morris turned to Twitter on Sept. 2 to reveal a new line of shirts that she was offering, with the proceeds slated to go to supporting transgender youth through the Trans Lifeline and the GLAAD Transgender Media Program. Each shirt features the caption, "Maren Morris: Lunatic Country Music Person." The shirts also include the phone number for the Peer Support & Crisis Hotline for trans youth at 877-565-8860.
The following day, on Sept. 3, Morris revealed the new line of shirts had already raised $100,000.
Morris tells the Times she doesn't feel particularly upset at the notion of not attending the 2022 CMAs.
"I think I was more sad going last year," she shares. "Some nights are fun. Others I’m just crawling out of my skin. I’m not good at those events because I’m awkward. But this time I kind of feel peaceful at the notion of not going."
The 2022 CMA Awards are set to air Nov. 9 on ABC. Nominees and performers are to be announced in the coming weeks. Luke Bryan and NFL quarterback Peyton Manning are set to host the 2022 CMA Awards.