Ringo Starr cancels North Carolina show over anti-LGBT law

Ringo Starr has cancelled a concert in North Carolina in protest over the state’s recently-passed anti-LGBT law.

The former Beatle joins Bruce Springsteen in refusing to perform in the state. Springsteen cancelled a Greensboro concert in protest “against prejudice and bigotry” in NC.

The state law, known as HB2 or the “bathroom law”, was passed in March following an executive order from the state’s governor Pat McCrory. It overturns city ordinances which protected the right of transgender people to use the restroom of their choosing, and instead requires people to use public bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to their biological sex.

Some North Carolina cities had passed local laws to ensure that trans people could use bathrooms for the gender they identify with. HB2 nullifies those local laws, and decrees that public institutions must display signs saying the facilities are to be used only based on biological sex.

Furthermore, towns can no longer prevent business from discriminating against customers based on gender identity or sexual orientation. HB2 has been described as the most “anti-LGBT” legislation in the US.

Starr was due to perform at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre on 18 June. The cancellation was announced in a post on the drummer’s Facebook page:

Ringo Starr Cancels His June 18th All Starr Tour Show
at Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, NC
in Opposition of HB2

4pm EST, Wednesday, April 13, 2016 – Ringo Starr has canceled 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.”

Last updated: 26 August 2016
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