This transgender singer has explained why she has decided to perform in North Carolina
The transgender lead singer of Against Me! has explained why the band will play a show next month in North Carolina.
Laura Jane Grace said the band would play in North Carolina despite its anti-LGBT religious freedom law HB2, saying the concert would be a “form of protest” against the new bill.
She told BuzzFeed: “I’m going to create an event around the show as a form of protest to say that despite whatever stupid laws they enact, trans people are not going to be scared.”
“They are not going to go away,” added the singer who came out as trans in 2012.
The band is set to play on 15 May in Durham, North Carolina.
She reflected specifically on HB2, saying: “I think the real danger with HB2 is that it creates a target on transgender people specifically.”
“When you feel targeted as a trans person, the natural inclination is to go into hiding. But visibility is more important than ever; to go there and have the platform of a stage to stand on and speak your mind and represent yourself.”
Grace also commended stars like Ringo Starr and Bruce Springsteen who have cancelled gigs in the state over HB2.
She said: “Bryan Adams and Bruce Springsteen aren’t transgender… For them to say, ‘I think this bill is messed up and I’m not going to go here and be part of the state,’ that seems like the effort of an ally, which is really commendable.”
The band will allow LGBT rights organisations to set up stalls at their show in Durham.
She Tweeted late in March that she was “eager to play North Carolina ’cause of the bill.”
“This is all kind of happening in the moment,” she said. “I’m doing what I can do and I’ll make the most of going to North Carolina.”
The punk singer came out as trans in 2012, continuing to perform with the band following her transition.
Against Me! later recorded album Transgender Dysphoria Blues based on Laura Jane Grace’s transition, which was widely acclaimed in the trans community.
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Springsteen was even accused of using “bully tactics” for cancelling the concert by one of the state’s Representatives.
But dozens of celebrities and hundreds of fans came to the defence of Springsteen, commending him for taking a stand.