A host on ‘The View’ called Macon ‘racist.’ Here’s how the city’s mayor responded

August 6, 2023
1 min read

Central Georgia Focus’s Ask Mayor Miller is a monthly interview series produced by the nonprofit Macon Newsroom and the Center for Collaborative Journalism at Mercer University. Civic Journalism Senior Fellow Liz Fabian, who covers Macon-Bibb County government entities, hosts the show.

In the July edition of the program, Macon Mayor Lester Miller talked about tax rollbacks, new speed cameras and courthouse changes for the city of nearly 160,000. He also shared his thoughts about the controversy over Macon native Jason Aldean’s controversial No. 1 summer hit, “Try That In A Small Town.”

The song came under fire for its lyrics about guns and a music video featuring a Tennessee courthouse which had been the location of a Black teen’s lynching in 1927. Aldean did not write the song but has defended it despite the pushback which flared on the July 20 episode of ABC TV show The View, when panelist Sunny Hostin called Aldean’s hometown of Macon “one of the most racist places in this country.

While Miller said he didn’t really have any thoughts about the song itself, he stood up for his city.

We continue to have the most diverse community that I see around, and that’s our strength,” Miller said. “And I think we’re going to continue to do that. So, we’re proud of everybody that comes out of Macon. And certainly sometimes they’re going to have challenges, but it’s something we can overcome. And right now, I think Macon is in an upward trajectory, and we don’t let people in in New York and other places tell us what kind of people we are here in Macon.”

Macon’s ABC and Fox affiliate TV station WGXA-TV reported that residents of the city agreed with their mayor. The city’s population is 53% Black, 39% white and 3.6% Hispanic. Macon-Bibb County leans Democratic, with 61% of voters choosing Joe Biden for President in the 2020 election. 

The city made national headlines earlier this summer when a small group of neo-Nazi protestors from Florida stood in front of Macon’s 164-year-old synagogue and hundreds of Maconites filled the steps to the temple doors in a show of support for the Jewish community.

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