Citing anti-LGBT law HB 1523, Singer-Songwriter Bryan Adams has cancelled his concert scheduled to take place in Mississippi on April 14th.
“I find it incomprehensible that LGBT citizens are being discriminated against in the state of Mississippi. I cannot in good conscience perform in a State where certain people are being denied their civil rights due to their sexual orientation,” Adams said in statements posted on his website, Facebook, and Instagram.
HB 1523 is one of the most wide-ranging anti-LGBT bills signed into law this year. The bill, also known as the “Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act,” explicitly allows for the discrimination against LGBT individuals in myriad ways as long as the discriminator is acting based on “sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions” that marriage “is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman.”
The law also attacks the rights of transgender individuals without even the flimsy justification of religious freedom afforded to the bill’s provisions against same-sex couples. The bill defines gender as determined at birth, stating, “Male (man) or female (woman) refer to an individual’s immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics at time of birth.”
The law also allows for employers and educators to manage access to sex-specific facilities, such as bathrooms and fitting rooms, in accordance with this definition.
Like many others, Bryan Adams has sought to protest the injustice of anti-LGBT laws by refusing to bring his business to the states that enact them.
“Using my voice I stand in solidarity with all my LGBT friends to repeal this extremely discriminatory bill. Hopefully Mississippi will right itself and I can come back and perform for all of my many fans. I look forward to that day,” the singer-songwriter wrote.
While one must applaud Adams’ convictions, you can’t help but hope that someday states’ actions will be guided not by economic considerations, but by the recognition that human rights must be protected and respected regardless of some people’s preexisting prejudices.
Featured image: Prateek Gupta (Flickr)