LGBT

Bruce Springsteen Cancels North Carolina Show Over Anti-LGBT Law

The Boss won't tolerate HB2

Apr 08, 2016 at 5:41 PM ET

Opposition has been mounting to North Carolina’s House Bill 2, a law that removes anti-discrimination protections for the LGBT community and requires trans people to use the bathroom of the gender on their birth certificate. The latest person to speak out? None other than The Boss himself. Bruce Springsteen announced on Friday that he’s canceled his Sunday show in Greensboro.

In a statement on his website, Springsteen writes:

As you, my fans, know I’m scheduled to play in Greensboro, North Carolina this Sunday. As we also know, North Carolina has just passed HB2, which the media are referring to as the “bathroom” law. HB2 — known officially as the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act — dictates which bathrooms transgender people are permitted to use. Just as important, the law also attacks the rights of LGBT citizens to sue when their human rights are violated in the workplace. No other group of North Carolinians faces such a burden. 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. As a result, and with deepest apologies to our dedicated fans in Greensboro, we have canceled our show scheduled for Sunday, April 10th. 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. It is the strongest means I have for raising my voice in opposition to those who continue to push us backwards instead of forwards.

Springsteen now stands in company with a number of businesses and individuals who have condemned HB2. Just this week, PayPal canceled a planned expansion in North Carolina. A letter from CEOs of major companies that urges Governor Pat McCrory to repeal the law is now 120 signatures strong. It includes heads of companies from Facebook to Apple to Bank of America, all three of which have major presences in North Carolina. The film and TV industry has voiced concern too. Studios with projects slated for the Tar Heel state have said they’ll reconsider if HB2 stands.

As for Springsteen? He might be the most high profile musician to boycott North Carolina so far, but he probably won’t be the last.