Chris Stapleton Won't Let Hate and Evil Run His Life

Reacts to Route 91 Harvest Music Festival Massacre

Chris Stapleton, a 2017 CMT Artist of the Year, visited CMT Radio this week. And when Cody Alan asked for his thoughts on Sunday's (Oct. 1) massacre at the Route 91 Harvest music festival, Stapleton responded with one question.

"Where does someone go in their mind to do these unthinkable things? I don't understand it," Stapleton said. "You want to look for reasons or some explanation even, and I don't know that there is one. There's a certain amount of innocence that gets lost from it when these things happen."

Stapleton added that he will not let fear and hate affect the way he lives his life.

"I'm not saying not to be afraid and not be terrified of things like that, but... I want to step out there with a certain degree of defiance against things like that and not let fear and hate and just evil run my decisions and how I carry myself," he said. "If we do that, then we're letting that win and rule us and that's exactly what people who would commit heinous acts like that would want. Personally, I can't give in to that. I can't do it."

A special CMT Hot 20 Countdown, airing Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 7-8) at 9 a.m. ET will have full coverage of the Route 91 Harvest music festival. The 2017 CMT Artists of the Year special airs live from Nashville on Oct. 18.

CMT's philanthropic initiative CMT One Country is supporting the Red Cross in the wake of this mass shooting. Our hearts are with everyone affected by the tragedy. If you are trying to locate loved ones, please call the Red Cross hotline: 1-866-535-5654.

If you are in Nevada and would like to donate blood, please go to to find out where to give.

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