Ringo Starr has cancelled his upcoming show in North Carolina over the anti-LGBT “Bathroom Bill”, the third major concert scrapped in the US South over discrimination concerns.
The former Beatles' drummer has made the decision not to play his planned gig on June 18 at the Koka Booth Amphitheater in protest over the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act, which decides which toilet a transgender person can use.
A statement on the venue's website reads: “Ringo Starr cancels his North Carolina performance in opposition to the passing of HB2. Like Bruce Springsteen and other fellow artists, Ringo stands with those fighting against the bigotry of HB2.
“Ringo states, 'I'm sorry to disappoint my fans in the area, but we need to take a stand against this hatred. Spread peace and love.' This law opens the door to discrimination everywhere by limiting anti-discrimination laws against people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
“Ringo adds, 'How sad that they feel that this group of people cannot be defended.' He asks that we all support organizations that are fighting to overturn this law in whatever way we can.
“As Canned Heat sang, 'let's work together,' and The Beatles said, 'all you need is love (sic).'“
Ringo follows in the footsteps of Bruce Springsteen who recently axed his gig in Greensboro to show his “solidarity” in the fight against prejudice of “LGBT citizens”.
He said: “North Carolina has just passed HB2, which the media are referring to as the “Bathroom Bill”. HB2 - known officially as the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act - dictates which bathrooms transgender people are permitted to use.”
“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. 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. 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 (sic).”
Canadian singer Bryan Adams recently cancelled a show in Mississippi to protest a new state law that will let people with religious objections deny services to same-sex couples.
Bang Showbiz and IOL