HB2: The Entertainment Industry Strikes Back
The entertainment industry has power, and they are using it to take a stand against HB2. While most performers are using their influence to speak against it, others still continue to cancel concerts to boycott the bill. Book tour stops are being cancelled in local businesses and film production companies are threatening to halt future projects in North Carolina, which will all result in hard-working NC citizens losing jobs.
Some film production companies already shooting or scouting for a location in North Carolina are angry over the law, threatening to boycott the state from future film projects, though the two local projects, "Dirty Dancing" and "Three Billboards" are moving along with production.
Stirring up the local scene, author Sherman Alexie announced cancellation of all North Carolina book tour stops, directly affecting Asheville's Malaprop's Bookstore and Cafe. Bruce Springsteen pulled out of his Greensboro concert with only two days to spare — giving the HB2 cancellation threats a high-profile face.
Next came Ringo Starr, Cirque du Soleil, Pearl Jam, Nick Jonas and Demi Lovato.
With hundreds of musicians and performers still coming through the state on daily, those protesting the law by canceling shows or donating concert proceeds to LGBT causes are among the vocal minority — though that's not to say those in the entertainment industry aren't disclosing their opinions on stage, from either side of the issue.
In early April, Jimmy Buffett, who had shows coming up in Raleigh and Charlotte, wrote on his blog that he would be sticking to schedule: "These shows were booked and sold out long before the governor signed that stupid law," Buffett wrote. "I am not going to let stupidity or bigotry trump fun for my loyal fans this year. We will be playing in Raleigh and Charlotte next week."
Needless to say, HB2 continues to hurt the people more than the lawmakers that created it.