Bruce Springsteen Cancels North Carolina Show to Protest New State Law
Bruce Springsteen has canceled a scheduled performance on Sunday (April 10) at Greensboro, N.C., in protest over a new state law that he says "attacks the rights of LGBT citizens."
The North Carolina legislature passed the law, widely referred to as HB2, back in March to reverse a local ordinance in Charlotte that extended some rights to those who are gay or transgender – specifically granting them the right to use public restrooms based on their gender identity. The measure also struck down similar ordinances that granted other protections throughout the state.
UPDATE: A North Carolina congressman, Republican Mark Walker, said the boycott was "disappointing." "Bruce is known to be on the radical left and he’s got every right to be so," he said. "But I consider this a bully tactic. It’s like when a kid gets upset and says he’s going to take his ball and go home."
"No other group of North Carolinians faces such a burden," Springsteen said in an official statement. "To my mind, it’s an attempt by people who cannot stand the progress our country has made in recognizing the human rights of all of our citizens to overturn that progress. Right now, there are many groups, businesses, and individuals in North Carolina working to oppose and overcome these negative developments. Taking all of this into account, I feel that this is a time for me and the band to show solidarity for those freedom fighters."
Tickets for Springsteen's scheduled Greensboro show will be refunded at the point of purchase. His tour was scheduled to continue into Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania next. At least one major corporation has already mounted a similar protest, as PayPal rolled back plans for a multi-million dollar North Carolina expansion.
"Some things are more important than a rock show and this fight against prejudice and bigotry – which is happening as I write – is one of them," Springsteen added. "It is the strongest means I have for raising my voice in opposition to those who continue to push us backwards instead of forwards."
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