It was the Spring of '16, but Bryan Adams won't be serenading fans in Mississippi with his string of hits.
The Canadian singer cancelled a performance in Biloxi, saying he can't “in good conscience” perform in a state where “certain people are being denied their civil rights due to their sexual orientation.”
He's referring of course to a new state law effective 1 July that will allow businesses and religious groups to deny service to gay couples. Yes, Adams' most massive hit, may be set in the summer of '69 and you'd think such thinking was spawned from that era - not this one.
At a time when so many countries are making huge progressive strides when it comes to gender equality and LGBTQ rights, it's disheartening to see some parts of the U.S. openly legislating prejudice and discrimination.
But even artists who are not political beasts hold so much power. By cancelling shows and boycotting certain venues, the likes of Adams and Bruce Springsteen are making a bold statement. (The Boss also recently pulled out of a gig in in Greensboro, North Carolina, for a similar reason.)
Of course Adams and Springsteen are rock legends so set, financially speaking, they can afford to play when and where they want. Unlike other performers, they can afford to put their conscience above their paycheque.
Backers of the Mississippi law claim it's there to protect the rights and values of Christians. But I would argue that actively discriminating against human beings is hardly in line with Christian values. I doubt very much even Pope Francis could get behind that with a clear conscience.
Bryan, I may not love your music, but I do love that you have the balls to stand up for what you believe is right. Rock on!
Image Source: WikiCommons