Gun-owning country star Eric Church just railed against the NRA. He's 100% right.

Eric Church can be two things at once.

The 41-year-old country star is a proud gun owner and a "Second Amendment guy." He's also an American who's deeply concerned with the gun lobby's grip over our politics.

Those things aren't mutually exclusively, he wants you to know.

Photo via Eric Church/Instagram.


In a new interview with Rolling Stone, Church got real about America's loose gun laws and why the National Rifle Association (NRA) is largely to blame. "I don’t understand why we have to fear a group [like the NRA]," he told the magazine. "It’s asinine."

A national tragedy last October — one that hit especially close to home for Church — further cemented the musician's belief that something needs to change.

Church performed at the 2017 Route 91 Harvest music festival in Las Vegas two days before the event became the scene of the worst mass shooting in modern American history.

Mourners attend a vigil after the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas. Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images.

Despite the horrors of the crime — 58 people were killed and hundreds more injured — no significant gun control measure passed through Congress or made it to the president's desk to help prevent further massacres.

The NRA, of course, has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into Washington in order to kill any such bill from becoming law.

"People come to see you play, then all of a sudden they die?" Church said, noting how terrified he'd been at the thought of his own fans caught up in the gunfire. "That is not an emotion that I was prepared to deal with. It wrecked me in a lot of ways."

“I’m a Second Amendment guy,” noted the musician, who owns several guns. "That’s in the Constitution, it’s people’s right, and I don’t believe it’s negotiable."

"But nobody should have that many guns and that much ammunition and we don’t know about it," Church continued, astounded by the weapons the Vegas killer had at his disposal.

Photo by David Becker/Getty Images.

The NRA certainly has blood on its hands, if you ask Church.

“I blame the lobbyists. And the biggest in the gun world is the NRA,” he said.

He continued:

"I don’t care who you are – you shouldn’t have that kind of power over elected officials. To me it’s cut-and-dried: The gun-show [loophole] would not exist if it weren’t for the NRA, so at this point in time, if I was an NRA member, I would think I had more of a problem than the solution. I would question myself real hard about what I wanted to be in the next three, four, five years."

Photo via Eric Church/Instagram.

As an ardent Second Amendment supporter who also wants better gun laws, Church may seem unique. He's really not.

Nearly all Americans believe in improving the background check system that keeps guns out of the hands of people who shouldn't own them, including a whopping 97% of Americans who live in households with guns.

Most Americans agree it's too easy to buy a gun. Most Americans want to close the gun-show loophole. Most Americans want to ban bump stocks.

These aren't radical ideas by politicians hellbent on taking your guns away. They're simple solutions to keep us all safer. And speaking out about them matters more to Church than staying silent to avoid ruffling feathers.

"I don’t care," Church said, acknowledging his outspokenness could lose him fans. "Right’s right and wrong’s wrong."

Pexels
True
Amazon

Shopping sustainably is increasingly important given the severity of the climate crisis, but sometimes it's hard to know where to turn. Thankfully, Amazon is making it a little easier to browse thousands of products that have one or more of 19 sustainability certifications that help preserve the natural world.

The online retailer recently announced Climate Pledge Friendly, a program to make it easier for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products. To determine the sustainability of a product, the program partnered with third-party certifications, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and independent labs.

With a selection of items spanning grocery, household, fashion, beauty, and personal electronics, you'll be able to shop more sustainably not just for the holiday season, but throughout the year for your essentials, as well.

You can browse all of the Climate Pledge Friendly products here, labeled with an icon and which certification(s) they meet. To get you on your way to shopping more sustainably, we've rounded up eight of our favorite Climate Pledge Friendly-products that will make great gifts all year long.

Amazon

Jack Wolfskin Women's North York Coat

Give the gift of warmth and style with this coat, available in a variety of colors. Sustainability is built into all Jack Wolfskin products and each item comes with a code that lets you trace back to its origins and understand how it was made.

Bluesign: Bluesign products are responsibly manufactured by using safer chemicals and fewer resources, including less energy, in production.


Amazon

Amazon All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen)

For the tech-obsessed. This Alexa smart speaker, which comes in a sleek, compact design, lets you voice control your entertainment and your smart home as well as connect with others.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.


Amazon

Burt's Bees Family Jammies Matching Holiday Organic Cotton Pajamas

Get into the holiday spirit with these fun matching PJs for the whole family. Perfect for pictures that even Fido can get in on.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

Naturistick 5-Pack Lip Balm Gift Set

With 100% natural ingredients that are gentle on ultra-sensitive lips, this gift is a great gift for the whole family.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.


Amazon

Arus Women's GOTS Certified Organic Cotton Hooded Full Length Turkish Bathrobe

For those who love to lounge around, this full-length organic cotton bathrobe is the way to go. Available in five different colors, it has comfortable cuffed sleeves, a hood, pockets, and adjustable belt.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Vegetable Based Soap

This luxe soap, made with moisturizing shea butter and scented with verbena, is perfect for the self-care obsessed.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.

Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Sweater-Knit Fleece Long-Sleeve Bomber

For the fashionable men in your life, this fashion-forward knit bomber is an excellent choice. The sweater material keeps it cozy and warm, while the bomber jacket-cut, zip front, and rib-trim neck make it look elevated.

Recycled Claim Standard 100: Products with this certification use materials made from at least 95% recycled content.

Amazon

All-new Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote

Make it even easier to access your favorite movies and shows this holiday season. The new Fire TV Stick lets you use your voice to search across apps. Plus it controls the power and volume on your TV, so you'll never need to leave the couch! Except for snacks.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.

True

If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.