The 1975 singer Matt Healy kisses man in defiance of Dubai’s anti-LGBT laws
The 1975 frontman Matt Healy kissed fan during the band’s gig in Dubai, in protest at the region’s strict anti-LGBT+ laws.
The band were performing their first – and possibly last – gig in the United Arab Emirates when a man in the audience shouted: “Marry me.”
A video shared on social media shows Healy climbing into the crowd to greet the fan, before asking if he would like a kiss.
To the crowd’s delight, he then locked lips with the fan.
The 1975 ‘don’t think’ they’ll return to Dubai
After the gig Healy tweeted: “I don’t think we’ll be allowed back due to my behaviour but know that I love you.”
He added that given the chance, he “wouldn’t have done anything differently.”
Fans were quick to praise him, with one writing: “You really made such a powerful statement that could have changed a young queer person’s entire perspective on who they are in such a hateful world.”
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Another added: “Please never stop doing it. Never stop going around and saying what you believe in and standing up for us and preaching love and making us so so so so so proud.”
The band has a history of supporting the LGBT+ community, and in June 2018 made a substantial (but undisclosed) donation towards a planned LGBT+ centre in London.
Homosexuality illegal in Dubai
It’s possible that the kiss could have broken the UAE’s strict anti-LGBT+ laws.
Same-sex relations between men are outlawed under the state’s penal code. Depending on the interpretation, the maximum punishment is either 10 years or the death penalty.
While the penal code specifically mentions the act of sodomy, a British man was arrested in October 2017 after touching another man’s hip.
Jamie Harron said he touched the man in order to avoid spilling a drink on him.
He was later sentenced to three months in prison for public indecency, but was exonerated a day later by special order of the UAE prime minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum.