In the ’50s and ’60s, the civil rights movement sought to end discrimination against African-Americans, and as a result, there’s certainly much less of it than there was back then, with all sane individuals realizing that judging a person solely by the color of their skin is unfair. That battle is being fought now for the LGBT community, and great strides are being made on that front. Same-sex marriage is legal in the United States, Caitlyn Jenner is one of the most visible people in the trans community, and being gay isn’t viewed as a defect by some like it was even 20 years. That’s not to say that it’s an easy fight, but bands including Slipknot and Korn guitarist Brian “Head” Welch are speaking up in support of the community.
Earlier this week, Slipknot played Charlotte, North Carolina. That wouldn’t have been a big deal before this year, but that was before the HB2 bill was passed in North Carolina. That’s the law that stated that individuals could only use the restroom and changing facility that corresponds with the sex on their birth certificate. The discriminatory bill has led to many artists, including Bruce Springsteen, to cancel their concerts in North Carolina in protest, and the NBA moved their All-Star game from Charlotte as a result. On Monday, the day before their show there, the band made a statement speaking out against the bill:
When we started this tour, we had reservations about playing in North Carolina because of a law recently passed there called HB2. The law halts the rights of LGBTQ people, doesn’t allow for cities to pass a living wage for the working class. We believe that regardless of who you are, or what you believe in this country- and in our own metal community- that everyone should be given access to equal opportunities they need to succeed. This law flies in the face of those values.We believe that regardless of who you are, or who you love, you shouldn’t have to face hatred at home or in your community. Our fans in North Carolina deserve better, so we decided not to cancel. We don’t care where you pee- just please flush. It’s pretty simple, really.We’ve decided to partner with Equality NC, the LGBTQ advocacy group leading the fight against this hateful bill. You can talk to Equality NC at our show about how to get involved, and get registered to vote in NC. That way we won’t have to talk about this the next time we come back there. We’re coming to North Carolina to show our fans that they can make the difference needed to repeal this law and return their state to a place that welcomes everyone and values differences.
It can’t be easy to live as a trans or gay person, but it’s encouraging that some of the biggest bands in metal are standing up for some of their fans’ right to live how they want.